Shaw and Liang go undefeated to win Open-Pro/Amateur stops on Predator Tour


In winning five Open/Pro events on the Predator Tour, dating back to November, Jayson Shaw, in the finals, has taken down Ronnie Alcano, Tony Robles, and Earl Strickland, twice. On the tour's most recent stop, a $500-added Open/Pro event that drew 21 entrants to Steinway Billiards in Astoria, NY on the weekend of April 13-14, his hot seat and finals victim was Mika Immonen. A concurrently-run, $500-added amateur event that drew 74 entrants was won by Tony Liang, who got by Rhio Anne (Annie) Flores twice to claim the amateur title. 

The Iceman and Shaw met first in the battle for the hot seat, once Immonen had sent Sean Morgan west 7-3 and Shaw had downed Jorge Rodriguez 7-4. Shaw got into the hot seat with a 7-4 win over the Iceman and waited on his return.

Morgan moved over to pick up Zion Zvi, who'd ousted Gary O'Callaghan 7-3 and defeated Earl "The Pearl" Strickland (in his home room) 7-5. Rodriguez drew Warren Kiamco, who'd gotten by Tony Robles 7-5 and Keith Adamik 7-3. Morgan survived a double hill struggle against Zvi to move on, but Rodriguez fell to Kiamco 7-2. Kiamco then took the quarterfinal match against Morgan 7-2, before giving way 7-5 to Mika in the semifinals.

The Iceman, who, according to tour director Robles, failed to sink a ball on any of his breaks in the finals, was behind early. Shaw, on the hill at 8-3, missed a shot at the 9-ball and handed Immonen a fourth rack. A 1-10 carom put unlucky rack 13 away early and the fifth Predator title in six months in Shaw's pocket.

Like Shaw, Tony Liang, on the amateur side of the weekend's proceedings, had to get past the same opponent in both the hot seat and finals - Rhio Anne (Annie) Flores. Annie had sent Anna Grintsuk west 7-4 for her first shot against Liang, who'd defeated Dave Shlemperis by the same score. Liang took the hot seat match by the same score, as well, and waited on Annie's return.

On the loss side, Pablo Sanz, who'd been shut out by Yomaylin (Smiley) Feliz, was in the midst of a seven-match, loss-side streak that would carry him all the way to the semifinals. He got by Vincent Rochefort 7-4 and Bob Schlott 7-2 to pick up Shlemperis. Grintsuk drew Feliz, who'd defeated Thomas Rice 7-3 and survived a double hill match versus Meshak Daniel. The battles for the 5th/6th place tie both went double hill. A Feliz/Sanz re-match was avoided when Grintsuk eliminated Feliz, and Sanz downed Shlemperis.

Sanz took the quarterfinal match against Grintsuk 7-4, completing his loss-side winning streak. Flores took him down in the semifinals 7-2. Liang completed his undefeated trip to the winners' circle with a double hill win over Flores in the finals.

1st Jayson Shaw $800
2nd Mika Immonen $500
3rd Warren Kiamco $250
4th Sean Morgan $150

1st Tony Liang $1,000
2nd Rhio Anne Flores $800
3rd Pablo Sanz $600
4th Anna Grintsuk $400
5th Yomaylin Feliz $275
Dave Shlemperis
7th Meshak Daniel $175
Bob Schlott
9th Phil Davis $130
Thomas Rice
Vincent Rochefort
Mike Hertz
13th Kevin Falco $100
Steve Solano