Simonetti goes undefeated to claim first Tri-State title since March 2013

Dennis Kennedy, Scott Simonetti and Brian Russell
Tri-State Tour representatives callEd Scott Simonetti's undefeated run through a field of 32 on Saturday, July 12, "the story of the day," noting that his play "reminded viewers of the Simonetti of old;" a reference, one assumes, to a year like 2010, which saw Simonetti win three stops on the Tri-State and one stop on the Predator Tour (to go along with 'money' finishes in nine other stops on both). The $1,000-added debut event of the Tri-State's 2013-2014 season on July 12 was hosted by Castle Billiards in East Rutherford, NJ.
Following victories over Tri Chau, Dave Ascolese, and Dave Jusis, Simonetti moved into a winners' side semifinal match against Jose Liz Domeneche. Dennis Kennedy, in the meantime, squared off against Ramon Feliciano. Simonetti moved into the hot seat match with an 8-5 win over Domeneche and faced Kennedy, who'd defeated Feliciano 6-5. Kennedy fought tooth and nail to secure a double hill win that left him in the hot seat, awaiting the return of what turned out to be Focused Apparel's Brian Russel.
Russel, who'd been sent to the loss side by Borana "Queen Bee" Andoni, embarked on a seven-match, loss-side winning streak that would take him all the way back to the finals. He got by Chau, Jan Mierzwa, Dave Jusis and Shin Sekine (who'd taken out Andoni for him), to draw Domeneche. Feliciano picked up Frank Sieczka, who'd shut out Robert Jew, and given up only a single rack to Dave Fitzpatrick.
Russel marched on, giving up only a single rack to Domeneche as Feliciano was allowing only a single rack to Sieczka. Russel defeated Feliciano 7-5 in the quarterfinal match that followed, and got a shot at Simonetti in the hot seat with a 7-4 win over Kennedy in the semifinals. Simonetti and Russel opted out of a final match, choosing to split the top prizes, leaving the undefeated Simonetti as the event's official title holder.
Tour representatives thanked the ownership and staff at Castle Billiards, as well as sponsors Sterling-Gaming, Ozone Billiards, Qpod, Heptig Cues, Kamui Tips, Phil Capelle, BlueBook Publishing, and Human Kinetics. The next stop on the Tri-State Tour, to be hosted by the Cue Bar in Bayside, NY, is scheduled for July 19.