Schmidt wins Pro Players Championship

John Schmidt

John Schmidt has won the Pro Player Championship.

Schmidt bounced back from a 10-4 loss to Corey Deuel and was able to take his revenge in the final match, but it wasn't easy. Schmidt had notable wins over Shawn Putnam and Germany's junior champion Dominic Jentsch, before falling to Deuel on Saturday. After the win over Schmidt, Deuel went on to defeat Oscar Dominguez in a late night Saturday match for the hot-seat.

Schmidt ended his Saturday evening with a 10-5 win over Ralf Souquet to book his place in the final four on Sunday. While Schmidt was ending one German's event, Charlie Bryant was ended another's as he defeated Thorsten Hohmann 10-4. Those matches assured the fans of an unlikely sight, a final four made up of all American players.

Sunday morning started with Schmidt facing Bryant and while Bryant had been playing at a high level all week, he seemed to run out of momentum on Sunday morning. Schmidt took that match 10-5 and went on to face Dominguez in the semi-finals.

Schmidt's match with Dominguez was a battle of experience vs youth, and this battle went to experience as Dominguez seemed to have problems with his nerves and Schmidt took complete advantage for a 10-6 win.

This left Schmidt facing Deuel in the final race to thirteen. Schmidt was still feeling loose from his back-to-back matches, and Deuel needed time to get his arm loose. Before Deuel knew it, he was down 4-1. That was right about the time that Deuel started feeling loose and he quickly tied the match at 7-7. The two players fought back and forth until 10-10, when Deuel won two games to get to the hill at 12-10. From that point on, the match belonged to Schmidt. Schmidt jumped on any mistake by Deuel, and won two games of his own to tie the match at 12-12.

Schmidt had the break in the final rack and jokingly asked if he could have onlooker Shane Van Boening break for him. Deuel declined that offer and left Schmidt to break. He spread the table well, but made nothing on the break. It looked like a fairly elementary table run for Deuel until he overran shape on the 5-ball. His cut attempt appeared to skid on him and the 5-ball hung up in the jaws. The table was wide open and even Schmidt's nerves couldn't keep him away from the finish line as he ran the final balls for the win.

Schmidt earned $20,000 for first place, while Deuel settled for $7,000.

Also completing play on Sunday was the sixteen players ladies event. This event was won by be pre-tournament favorite Allison Fisher who defeated Kim Shaw and Yu-Ram Cha for the $3,000 payday. Cha earned $1,500 for second.