Wolford wins two of three events and is runner-up at a third on Viking Cues' Q City 9-Ball Tour
Skip Maloney
Mar. 13, 2019
It was a busy weekend in Roanoke, VA. The Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball paid a visit to a new venue on their schedule – Wolf’s Den Billiards in Roanoke, owned by the Wolford family. In what brings a new degree of clarity to the phrase ‘home room,’ Shane Wolford won two out of the three events held over the weekend of March 9-10; the 53-entrant, handicapped Amateur event and a 10-entrant Open event. He was runner-up in the 17-entrant One Pocket event, which was held in the same location, but not specifically run by the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour.
 
The venue hadn’t just opened its doors when the tournament got underway. It was still plugging in the lights. According to tour director Herman Parker, when he arrived at the location on Saturday morning to begin registering players, the lights over the tables he was going to be using hadn’t even been hung. The situation was rectified by the time the registration process had been concluded and tournament play commenced.
 
In fact, Shane Wolford actually won only one of the three events, as defined by playing in an event final and winning that final match. He and Derek Leonard ended up splitting the top two payouts in the Amateur event, because when it came time for the finals of that event, Wolford was playing in the hot seat of the Open event, which he went on to win.
 
Former two-time junior champion Zach Hampton (14 and under, 2012/18 and under 2013) won the One Pocket tournament, downing fellow junior player Wolford 3-0 in the finals, both collecting the only cash prizes; $1050 for Hampton and $525 for Wolford. Wolford added $200 more for his actual victory in the Open event, downing James Blackburn 7-5 in the final (Wolford had defeated Blackburn earlier, double hill, in the hot seat match).
 
In the Amateur event, which played out over the two days of the pool room’s opening weekend, Wolford advanced to a winners’ side semifinal against Ron Frank, as Derek Leonard faced Matt Siple. Leonard sent Siple to the loss side 9-3 and turned to face Wolford, who defeated Frank 9-4. Wolford claimed the hot seat 9-6 over Leonard in what proved to be Wolford’s last match of the Amateur event.
 
On the loss side, Siple drew Jason Evans, a recent winner on the tour (Feb.), who’d just eliminated two straight competitors, double hill - Graham Swinson and Trevor Stanley. Frank picked up Jonathan Caldwell, who, like Evans, had eliminated two straight opponents in double hill matches; Frank King and Jonathan Ailstock.
 
Siple and Frank ended Evans’ and Caldwell’s two-match, double hill winning streak and advanced to the quarterfinals; Siple 7-5 over Evans and Frank 9-3 over Caldwell. Siple ended Frank’s run 7-4 in those quarterfinals.
 
Leonard took the last match of the event, the semifinals, 9-5 over Siple and agreed with Wolford to split the top two prizes, while Wolford continued his winning run on the Open event.
 
Tour directors Herman and Angela Parker thanked the Wolford family and their Wolf’s Den Billiards' staff for their hospitality, as well as title sponsor Viking Cues, Bar Pool Tables, Delta 13 Racks, AZ Billiards and Professor Q-Ball. The next stop on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour, scheduled for this weekend (March 16-17), will be hosted by Borderline Billiards in Bristol, TN.