Pao and Shea battle it out for event victory and top spot on JPNEWT
Skip Maloney
Oct. 14, 2019
Caroline Pao (Erwin Dionisio)
Caroline Pao (Erwin Dionisio)
Tour director Linda Shea came into the 7th stop on her J. Pechauer Northeast Women’s Tour on October 12-13 as the tour’s top-ranked player, having appeared in all six previous stops on the tour and winning one of them, back in April. Caroline Pao entered the tournament as the tour’s #2-ranked player, having appeared in two previous stops on the tour and winning them both (July and September). When the event that drew a short field of 12 entrants to Eagle Billiards in Dickson City, PA was over, Pao had gone undefeated to chalk up her third win on the tour, but had failed, point-wise, to pass Shea on the tour’s player-standings list.
 
They faced each other twice in the event; once, in a winners’ side semifinal and again, in the finals. Pao had shut out Judie Wilson and given up only a single rack to Denise Mangini when she drew Shea in the winners’ side semifinal. Shea had defeated Carol V. Clark 7-2 and Noel Rima 7-5 to draw Pao. In the meantime, Linda Cheung, who’d been awarded an opening round bye, defeated Suzzie Wong 7-4 to draw Anita Sowers in the other winners’ side semifinal.
 
Pao advanced to the hot seat match by sending Shea to the loss side 7-2. She was joined by Cheung, who downed Sowers, double hill. Pao claimed the hot seat 7-1 over Cheung and waited for Shea to complete her three-match run on the loss side.
 
Shea opened that loss-side run with a rematch against Clark, who, after her defeat versus Shea in the opening round, picked up a bye, then eliminated Wong 7-1 and survived a double hill fight against Melissa Jenkins. Sowers drew a rematch, as well, against Sharon O’Hanlon, whom she’d defeated in the opening round and who’d subsequently defeated Denise Mangini 7-2 and Noel Rima 7-5 to earn the rematch.
 
Shea downed Clark a second time 7-2. She was joined in the quarterfinals by O’Hanlon, who’d eliminated Sowers in their rematch 7-5. Shea completed her loss-side run with a 7-1 victory over O’Hanlon in the quarterfinals and a 7-2 win over Cheung in the semifinals.
 
The two repeated their performance in the winners’ side semifinal. Pao defeated Shea a second time 7-2 to claim the event title.
 
Shea thanked Chris Wilson and his Eagle Billiards staff for their hospitality, as well as title sponsor J. Pechauer Custom Cues, MezzUSA, Baltimore City Cues, Billy Ray Bunn Cue Repair and streaming support from angle aim Art (Britanya E Rapp). The next stop on the JPNEWT, scheduled for the weekend of November 16-17, will be hosted by Triple Nines Bar & Billiards in Elkridge, MD.