Safronov wins his first Tri-State with undefeated performance in Brooklyn

Bob Toomey, Kirill Safronov and Lionell Swanston
Kirill Safronov, who alternates his pool time between the Tri-State and Predator tours, finally broke through on the Tri-State and chalked up a first win on the tour. The $1,000-added event, in competition with the Predator Tour and The New England Pool & Billiard Hall of Fame 9-Ball Open in Providence, RI on the weekend of February 28-March 1, drew a small field to BQE Billiards in Brooklyn, NY on Sunday.
Safronov and Lionell Swanston battled twice for the title; first, for the hot seat and later, in the finals. Safronov sent Noah Vogelman to the loss side 7-2 in one winners' side semifinal, while Swanston dispatched Steve Wade 6-4 in the other. Safronov claimed the hot seat 7-5 over Swanston and waited on his return.
Vogelman and Wade moved over and were eliminated immediately. Vogelman fell 7-5 to Gary Murgia, who'd previously defeated Shinichi Sekine 7-4 and Ramon Feliciano 7-2. Wade was a 6-1 victim to Bob Toomey, who'd survived a double hill fight versus Anthony Cuccheilla and downed John Morrison 6-1.
Toomey advanced to the first money round with an 8-6 win over Murgia in the quarterfinals. Swanston kept him right there with a 6-4 win in the semifinals to earn himself a second shot at Safronov in the hot seat.
Swanston came out gunning in the finals and took an immediate two-rack lead. Though Safronov would reduce that lead to one, a couple of times, Swantson eventually expanded it to three racks at 5-2. Safronov settled in at that point and chalked up five in a row to win it and claim his first Tri-State title.
The next Tri-State event, scheduled for March 7, will be hosted by Gotham City Billiards. Tour representatives thanked the ownership and staff at BQE Billiards, as well as sponsors Ozone Billiards, Sterling-Gaming, Kamui Tips, Ron Vitello, Focus Cases by John Barton, Phil Capelle, BlueBook Publishing, Human Kinetics , and Focus Apparel.