Ryan and Meraglio Shine at Tiger Planet Pool Amateur 8-Ball Season Finale In Sterling

Joey Ryan

Joey Ryan cruised through a tough field undefeated at the Tiger/Planet Pool Amateur 8-Ball Tour Season Finale event this weekend at First Break Cafe in Sterling, VA. Tour points number two, Ed Deska was his first noteable victim, going down in the third round. Ryan sent Deska to the one-loss side 5-3, then did the same to First Break local, Jimmy Endara, before going home at the end of the first day's play to prepare for his morning match against veteran player, Jim McAdams. McAdams offered no resistance in their match and found himself facing Deska on the losers' side after going down 5-0. Ryan then took the hot seat by beating the previous event's winner, Thuan Bui by a margin of 5-3.

On the one-loss side, McAdams disposed of Ed Deska on the hill, and then got the same result against tour points leader, Dave Hunt, who had lost to Michael Moran on Saturday and then fought his way back with solid victories over AJ Keck, Jimmy Endara, Jerry Johnson, and room owner, Anthony Luong. McAdams' experience prevailed over Hunt, but he then got sent home by Bui who wanted revenge against Ryan along with a chance at his second tour victory in a row. In the final, Ryan raced ahead to 4-2, but Bui was not ready to admit defeat and caught up and stayed with Joey all the way, making it hill-hill and a tense final game. Ryan scraped through after Bui failed to hit his last ball from a snooker behind Ryan's eight ball, taking the $700 first prize in the process.

In the ladies' event it was Tina Meraglio who secured the hot seat from a strong field after sending tour points leader Kathleen Lawless to wait on the winner between tournament director, Ceci Strain and 9-Ball Season Finale winner, Amanda Pasko. Strain had earlier beaten tour points number two, Janet Keith in the winners' bracket, who in turn then fell at the hand of Pasko to crush her hopes of catching Lawless on the points list. Pasko ousted Strain, but then lost to a very determined Kathleen Lawless who wanted another shot at Meraglio in the final. The final match went back and forth for a while, and although Lawless played fiercely, a missed eight ball put Meraglio in the driver's seat, ultimately emerging as the day's undisputed winner and proving that her selection to represent the USA against Korea next to Charlie Williams, Johnny Archer and Rodney Morris earlier this year was well-deserved.

Dave Hunt is the year's Amateur 8-Ball Open Division Tour Points winner, while Kathleen Lawless earns the same honor in the Women's Division.

Results and Pay-Outs:

Open Division:

1st - Joey Ryan - $700
2nd - Thuan Bui - $450
3rd - Jim McAdams - $300
4th - Dave Hunt - $200
5/6th - Anthony Luong - $125
5/6th - Ed Deska - $125
7/8th - Dickie Utz - $90
7/8th - Jerry Johnson - $90

Women's Division:

1st - Tina Meraglio - $240
2nd - Kathleen Lawless - $160
3rd - Amanda Pasko - $110
4th - Ceci Strain - $80
5/6th - Gwen Dickert - $60
5/6th - Iris Pegg - $60

The Tiger Planet Pool Tour 2006 Season Opener will take place on Feb 3-4 at Champion Billiards Cafe in Laurel, MD. Dates listed in Inside Pool Magazine for 2006 are erroneous.