Oliviera survives finals challenge from Minichello to win Rack’Em Up Tour stop

It’s been a familiar scene, the finals of the Rack ‘Em Up 9-Ball Tour coming down to a match between Nelson Oliviera and Rich Minichello. In May, Minichello double dipped Oliviera to win the season’s A Division Point standings, and in the first event of the 2011/2012 season, Minichello hung on in the finals to win a double hill battle. On Sunday, November 13, it was Oliviera, hanging on to win after giving up his first match in the opening set of a true double elimination final. The Open, A, B, C event drew 43 entrants to Westgate Billiards in Brockton, MA.

They met first among the winners’ side final eight, when Oliviera advanced to the final four winners with a 6-3 win to face Rick Gatta. Joining Oliviera and Gatta were Anthony Disegna and Kevin Bauccio. Oliviera got into the hot seat match with a 6-2, double hill win over Gatta, and was met by Bauccio, who’d defeated Disegna 4-1. Oliviera shut out Bauccio to get into the hot seat, where he waited for his familiar foe.

Disegna moved over and ran right into Minichello, who, after being sent west by Oliviera, defeated Pete Bowman and Bill Cote, both 6-2. Gatta drew D.J. Hopkins, who’d gotten by Dan Tankerly double hill and Choneyi Tenzin 5-3. Minichello and Hopkins advanced to the quarterfinals; Minichello with a 6-1 win over Disegna and Hopkins, double hill over Gatta. In a straight-up race to 4, Minichello defeated Hopkins and turned to face Bauccio in the semifinals.

Minichello made short work of Bauccio, defeating him 5-1, in a 5-4 race, and turned for a second crack (on this weekend) at Oliviera. He took the opening set 5-4 (Oliviera needing 6), but gave way in the second set 6-3.

Jason D’Angelo’s name was drawn in the first Break and Run contest and took home $28 for the one ball he sank. Mike Santoro followed and failed to sink a ball.