Shea goes undefeated to take her first 2019 JPNEWT title
Skip Maloney
May 1, 2019
(l to r): Friend, King, Hatcher, Wong, Li, Shea, Sidbury & Gyftopoulos
(l to r): Friend, King, Hatcher, Wong, Li, Shea, Sidbury & Gyftopoulos
The top two players on the 2018 J. Pechauer Northeast Women’s Tour, were at it again on the weekend of April 27-28, 2019. Tour director Linda Shea, who finished at the top of last year’s tour rankings went undefeated in this second stop on her tour, while Nicole King, who finished in the second spot in those 2018 tour rankings, finished in the second spot in this event, as well. The $500-added event drew 24 entrants to Markley Billiards in Norristown, PA.
 
In addition to the main event, which was an NAPT Div. 2: Semi-Pro Tournament, the JPNEWT held a Sunday Amateur tournament for players with 4 and under handicaps only. That event drew seven entrants and saw two ‘Jenns’ emerge from the event’s round robin format to collect the top two prizes; Jenn Tully finished in 1st place, with Jenn Sylvester as runner-up.
 
In the main event, Shea advanced through Ada Lio 7-5, Lisa Dougherty 7-1 and Anita Sowers 7-3 to arrive at a winners’ side semifinal match against Eugenia Gyftopoulos. King, in the meantime, was awarded an opening round bye, and then, defeated April Hatcher 7-1 and Noel Rima 7-5 to draw Lai Li in the other winners’ side semifinal.
 
Shea advanced to the hot seat 7-5 over Gyftopoulos, and was joined by King, who’d defeated Li 7-2. Shea claimed the hot seat 7-5 and waited on King’s return.
 
On the loss side, Kia Sidbury was fighting her way back from a first-round, double hill defeat at the hands of Lai Li, and after a first-round, loss-side bye, was in the midst of a four-match winning streak that was about to end. She’d downed Melissa Jenkins, Carol Clark, Noel Rima (double hill) and Suzzie Wong 7-5, to draw Gyftopoulos. Li, in the meantime, picked up Kathy Friend, who after losing double hill to Gyftopoulos on the winners’ side, had shutout Ada Lio and defeated April Hatcher 7-5 to reach her.
 
Gyftopoulos and Sidbury locked up in a double hill fight (Sidbury’s 4th) for advancement to the quarterfinals and Gyftopoulos was the one to advance. She was joined in the quarterfinals by Friend, who earned her rematch against Gyftopoulos by handing Li her second straight loss 7-5.
 
Friend went a step further, defeating Gyftopoulos 7-1 in those quarterfinals, before having her own four-match, loss-side winning streak brought to an end by King, who defeated her 7-2 in the semifinals.
 
The wait didn’t seem to do much harm to Shea in the finals. She bettered her score in the hot seat match by two racks, completing her undefeated run with a second victory over King; this time 7-3.
 
Shea thanked the ownership and staff at Markley Billiards, as well as sponsors J. Pechauer Custom Cues, Coins of the Realm, angle aim Art (Britanya E Rapp), The Turtle Rack Combo (Mezzusa.com), Baltimore City Cues and Billy Ray Bunn Cue Repair. The next stop on the JPNEWT, scheduled for May 18-19, will be hosted by First Break Bar & Grill in Sterling, VA.