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Perrino and Chase go undefeated to win Partners stop on the NE 9-Ball Series

(l to r): TJ Perrino, Brian Chase, Charlie Matarazzo & Rick Gatta

Partners tournaments are not a main item on anyone’s pool calendar menu, although as the industry has begun to notice the increased-interest advantages of team competitions, they may be a harbinger of things to come. The New England 9-Ball Series hosts them fairly regularly, and while they present something of a narrative challenge, as descriptions of the event require lengthy and repetitive use of the double names, which defy any shorthand means of reducing the overall words-per-report average. Its most recent partners tournament (Stop #9 on the tour), held on Sunday, December 9 at Crow’s Nest in Plaistow, NH, drew 64 sets of partners, which, if nothing else, managed to increase the tour’s entrants-per-event average.
The teams of two play with an average FargoRate, which, in the case of the eventual winners – TJ Perrino and Brian Chase – happened to be the highest FargoRate (600) among the event’s final and money-earning 12 teams. The range of competition, as defined by the combined FargoRate, amounted to 150 points, with the lowest team (450; Ben Come and Nelson Perron) being eliminated in the matches that determined the four-way tie for 9th place. As with their singles tournaments, the event was initially broken up into separate upper and lower (ranked) brackets.
Perrino/Chase advanced through the upper bracket to arrive at a winners’ side semifinal match against John Ferreira and Kevin Rodriguez (594). Charlie Matarazzo and Rick Gatta (530), in the meantime, emerging from the lower bracket, squared off against Jason Parker and Jose Concepcion (493). Perrino/Chase survived a double hill match against Ferreira/Rodriguez and advanced to the hot seat match. Matarazzo/Gatta had a slightly easier battle, defeating Parker/Concepcion 4-1. Perrino/Chase downed Matarazzo/Gatta 5-1 (Matarazzo/Gata racing to 4) and waited in the hot seat for their return.
On the loss side, Ferreira/Rodriguez met up with Al McGuane and Michael Mathieu (575), who, most recently in the event’s first money round, had defeated Kerry McAuliffe and Adam Blair 4-1, and then, by the same score, Jeff Provencher and Andrew Burns. Parker/Concepion faced John Collier and Ruben Soto (537), who’d recently shut out Eli Davenport and Bill Phillips, and then got into a double hill fight, which they won 3-2, against Justin Fournier and Matt Lopes.
Ferreira/Rodriguez, no doubt eager to avenge their double hill loss versus Perrino/Chase in the winners’ side semifinals, got right back to work, giving up only two racks over their next 11 games. They first downed McGuane/Mathieu 4-2, as Collier/Soto were busy eliminating Parker/Concepcion 3-1. Ferreira/Rodriguez then shut out Collier/Soto in the quarterfinals and turned to the one obstacle in the way of their hoped-for rematch; Matarazzo and Gatta.
Both teams chalked up four racks in the semifinals. Matarazzo/Gata, however, with the lower FargoRate, were racing to four, and the Ferreira/Rodriguez bid for a shot in the finals came to an end, one game shy. Matarazzo/Gata had managed only a single rack in the hot seat match, but they mounted a more vigorous campaign in the finals. They forced Perrino/Chase (racing to 5) into an eighth deciding game. Perrino/Chase, though, won the deciding game to claim the partners title 5-3.
Tour director Marc Dionne thanked the ownership and staff at Crow’s Nest, along with sponsors Predator Cues, USAPL New England, FargoRate, Bert Kinister, AZBilliards, Inside English, Professor Q-Ball’s National Pool and 3-Cushion News, Delta 13 Racks, MJS Construction, Bob Campbell, Bourgeois Farms and OTLVISE Billiard Mechanics of America. The New England 9-Ball Series will move into the 2019 portion of its current season with a $500-added event (Stop #10), scheduled for Saturday, January 5, and hosted by Legends Sports Bar in Auburn, ME.

Nickerson follows 7th place Joss NE 9-Ball finish with a win on the New England 9-Ball Series

(l to r): Kyle Pepin, Dan Small (Legends owner), Carlton Chagnon & Dillon Nickerson

Recognition as a contender in the world of pool usually begins with a player’s first finish ‘in the money,’ from which it will proceed (hopefully) to higher and higher finishes and larger amounts of money to show for the efforts. To have that first (recorded) payout occur on the Joss Northeast 9-Ball Tour isn’t unheard of, but it’s a significant radar blip on a pool career screen that suggests the player might be someone to watch. Dillon Nickerson finished 7th in the Joss NE 9-Ball’s season opener last month (The Maine Event XI in September) and the radar blip of that finish put his name into the AZBilliards database for the first time. A month later, on the weekend of October 14-15, a slightly stronger blip appeared on Nickerson’s career screen when he navigated his way through a field of 52, on-hand for the third stop on the New England 9-Ball Series, and chalked up his first event title. It should be noted that occasionally, a player’s victory or a number of them might not, for a variety of reasons, show up in the extensive AZBilliards database, because that one or those victories might not have been reported to the site’s administrators. That said, as the blip on the career screen is recorded for posterity, Nickerson has now won a regional tour title, and the money that it represents. The $1,500-added event was hosted by Legends Sports Bar & Grill in Auburn, ME.
At the start of an event, players on The New England 9-Ball Series are divided into two brackets that initially separate higher and lower-ranked players. Without delving too deeply into the minute details, this creates two hot seat matches (winners’ side finals), one each for the initially separate upper and lower brackets. In a single bracket, these two separate hot seat matches would be identified as the two winners’ side semifinals, leading to one hot seat match. So it was, that Nickerson, after being awarded an opening round bye and defeating three opponents faced Al McGuane in this recent event’s upper bracket hot seat match, while Charlton Chagnon (winner of four matches) faced Charles Rosco in the lower bracket’s hot seat match. Nickerson downed McGuane 6-4, as Chagnon sent Rosco to the loss side 5-1. Nickerson claimed the overall event hot seat with a double hill (8-4) win over Chagnon.
On the loss side, McGuane ran into an immediate re-match against Kyle Pepin, whom he had defeated earlier. Pepin’s loss-side trip in the upper bracket amounted to a single match, which he won, over Derick Burnham 8-4. This advanced him to the loss side of a single, merged bracket, where he survived a double hill fight against George Morgan to draw the re-match against McGuane. Rosco picked up Mike Pepin (Kyle Pepin’s uncle), recent winner over Kevin Lank (forfeit) and Josh Edmonds 5-3.
Uncle and nephew Pepin moved on to face each other in the quarterfinals; Nephew Kyle, defeating McGuane, double hill and UncLe Mike, 5-2 over Rosco. Kyle chalked up the quarterfinal win over his uncle 9-2 (Mike racing to 5). Kyle then defeated Chagnon 10-5 in the semifinals to earn a spot in the finals against Nickerson.
Pepin battled Nickerson to a deciding game in the opening set of the true double elimination final and won it to force a second set. Nickerson, though, came back to win the second set 6-5 (Pepin racing to 8) and claim his first recorded tour victory.
Tour director Marc Dionne thanked the ownership and staff at Legends, as well as sponsors Ozone Billiards, Molinari, Bert Kinister, AZBilliards, Inside English, Professor Q-Ball’s National Pool and 3-Cushion News, Delta 13 Racks, MJS Construction, Bob Campbell, Championship Cloth and OTLVISE Billiard Mechanics of America. The next stop (#5) on the New England 9-Ball Series, scheduled for October 21, will be a $500-added event, hosted by Yale Billiards in Wallingford, CT.

Campbell stops loss-side bid by Senna to take NE 9-Ball Series Tour Championships

(l to r): Tyler Campbell & Rich Senna


Tyler Campbell, a C+ player from Portland, ME, picked the New England 9-Ball Series Championships to record his first major win anywhere. He lost only one match, the first set in a true double elimination final against B+ player, Rich Senna. The $10,000-added Tour Championships, held on the weekend of September 9-10, drew 110 entrants to Bo’s Billiards in Warwick, RI.
Campbell advanced to the hot seat match with a 5-2 win over fellow C+ player Bill O’Mara, while Al McGuane sent Campbell’s eventual finals opponent, Senna, to the loss side in a double hill win. Campbell claimed the hot seat 5-5 over McGuane (racing to 7) and waited on Senna’s return.
On the loss side, Senna began his trek back to the finals against Steve Sutton, who’d eliminated Tony Ruzzano 6-4 and Phillip Davis 5-6 (Davis racing to 8). O’Mara drew David Ty, recent winner over Joanne Vienneau, double hill, and Jay Cunningham 5-2.
Omara and Senna went right back to work; O’Mara downing Ty 5-2 and Senna eliminating Sutton, double hill. Senna took the quarterfinal match 8-2 over O’Mara, and spoiled McGuane’s bid for a second shot against Campbell  6-2 in the semifinals.
Campbell kept it close in the opening set of the true double elimination final, forcing a deciding game at the 7-4 mark (Campbell racing to 5, Senna to 8). Senna won it to force a second set, which came within a single game of being a second double hill match. Campbell, though, pulled ahead near the end and won the second set 5-6 to claim his first NE 9-Ball Series victory.
Tour director Marc Dionne thanked the ownership and staff at Bo’s Billiards for their hospitality, as well as sponsors Ozone Billiards, Molinari, Bert Kinister, AZBilliards, Inside English, Professor Q-Ball’s National Pool and 3-Cushion News, Delta 13 racks, Bob Campbell, Championship Cloth, OTLVISE Billiard Mechanics of America.
The opening event of the New England 9-Ball Series’ 2017-2018 season, scheduled for Sunday, September 24, will be hosted by Crow’s Nest in Plaistow, NH.

Kevin Ketz Memorial Comes To Trick Shot Billiards

Players & Fans,

Congratulations to Stop # 11 winners, Zion Zvi ($1,700 main event), Al McGuane ($360 second chance event), Seamus Sweeney ($1,500 Joss cue raffle winner), Jeremy Sossei (entry into the Super Billiards Expo pro event provided by Allen Hopkins for being our 2015/2016 Tour Point Champion) & all of this years New England Pool & Billiard Hall Of Fame Inductees.
Congratulations as well to Stephen Janes of Joss Cues for being named "Cue Maker Of The Year" by the American Cue Makers Association!!!
On March 11 & 12, stop # 12 of The Joss Northeast 9-Ball Tour, the "Northeast 9-Ball Open XXIX" will be at Trick Shot Billiards & Sports Pub in Clifton Park (near Albany) NY. This event will also serve as a memorial and is dedicated to the memory of our recently departed friend Kevin Ketz, who passed away suddenly last December at the very young age of 53. He is missed already.
Our hosts Tim & Julie Berlin deserve many thanks from all of us for their continuing support and having already hosted 2 events this season at their other room, Sharp Shooters Billiards & Sports Pub!!! Thanks again Tim & Julie!! Tim has even arranged to have all of the tables recovered in 860 Simonis (The Cloth Of Champions) just in time for our event! Trick Shot is a full service room with everything needed for a great time of pool and fun anytime. It is complete with a delicious full food menu and a separate full service bar where you can watch all of your favorite teams in action. You could even win a gorgeous, custom, engraved, Joss Cue valued at $1,500 by participating in Trick Shot's cue raffle. Anyone can participate  and you don't have to be present to win! The drawing will be just prior to the final match of the main event on Sunday. This amazing cue that will be given away at Trick Shot can be viewed here: 
For more info about Trick Shot, or to get directions and nearby motel info, please call them directly at 518-383-8771. Or visit their site at
This event at Trick Shot will consist of a $1500 added Saturday and Sunday Main Event (entry Fee $120 for pro level or $70 for non pro level) and a $500 added consolation event on Sunday ($20 Entry Fee) for those non pro level players eliminated from the main event on Saturday.
For those of you coming to play, please arrive on Saturday March 11, BEFORE 11:30 AM, and in proper dress please. Yes, jeans and sneakers are permitted in our billiard parlor events. But please, no T-shirts, tanks, shorts or sweats. Complete tour info can be found on our site  
A reminder that stop # 14 will now be at Hippo's The House Of Billiards on April 8 & 9, 2017, due to the fire at Salt City Billiards. 
Our season finale, the $25,000 Added Turning Stone Classic XXVIII 9-Ball Open, is scheduled for August 31 – September 3, 2017. I am currently accepting entries and strongly suggest that you pay your entry early to avoid being shut out. Entry fee for this prestigious WPA, BCA and Mosconi Cup ranking event is only $150 for Current tour members and only $200 for all others. As you can see, membership has its privileges! If you would like to enter, please contact Mike Zuglan at 518-356-7163 or see me at any of our Joss Northeast 9-Ball Tour regular season events before it is full. Currently we are already about 2/3 full and it is still only March!
Finally, I can't stress enough how important it is for all of you to please frequent your local billiard parlors and utilize the services and products of our most generous sponsors who are the backbone of our sport. These are the ones who keep our sport alive. So get out and play! 
I hope to see you all at Trick Shot. 
Mike Zuglan

The Joss Northeast 9-Ball Tour Is Proudly Sponsored By;

Joss Cues – 
Turning Stone Resort Casino – 
Simonis Cloth – – –

Aramith – 
Billiards Press – 
Heidrich Custom Cues –                 
World Class Cue Care –

Zvi takes two of three against Dupuis to win 8th Annual NE Hall of Fame/Ray Desell Memorial

Joey Dupuis and Zion Zvi

Zion Zvi backed up an undefeated victory at the 10th Annual Empire State Championships last week (Feb. 25-26), with a single-loss win at the 8th Annual New England Pool & Billiards Hall of Fame/Ray Desell Memorial Tournament on the weekend of March 4-5. Zvi faced a former champion of the event, Joe Dupuis, who won it in 2014, three times; once in the hot seat and twice in the double elimination finals. Zvi came back from a loss in the first meeting to double dip Dupuis in the last two. The $2,500-added event, held under the auspices of the Joss Northeast 9-Ball Tour, drew 86 entrants to Snooker's in Providence, RI.
Dupuis got into the hot seat of this event after a dramatic comeback in a winners' side semifinal against RYan Lineham. Down 6-0, and five racks behind when Lineham reached the hill, Dupuis came back to tie, before simultaneously taking his first lead of the match and winning it. Zvi joined him in the hot seat match following a 9-5 victory over Bruce Nagle. Dupuis has something of a reputation for thriving in fast-paced games. "When he's on his game, racing around the table," noted an AZ report from the 5th Annual Hall of Fame victory in 2014, "he's a sight to behold." He recreated that "sight to behold" phenomenon in the battle for the hot seat, as he allowed Zvi only three racks in the battle to win it.
On the loss side at the time, there were still a few potential winners of this event, including Jorge Rodriguez and Tom "Shorty" D'Alfonso. Rodriguez had been sent to the loss side by Dupuis (9-6) and was in the midst of a six-match, loss-side winning streak that would take him as far as Zvi and the semifinals. He and D'Alfonso met up in one of the four 9/12 matches, with Rodriguez winning it 7-1 (this was the first time that the Joss NE Tour arranged for loss-side matches to be races to 7). Rodriguez went on to defeat Rick Sleeper 7-3 to draw Lineham. Nagle picked up Dave Fernandez, who'd defeated Francisco Cabral 7-4 and Mike Minichello 7-3 to reach him.
Rodriguez and Fernandez handed Lineham and Nagle their second straight loss, both 7-4, before locking up in a double hill quarterfinal that eventually sent Rodriguez to face Zvi in the semifinals. Zvi ended Rodriguez' loss-side run 7-5 in those semifinals, and got the shot he was looking for against Dupuis in the hot seat.
They fought tooth and nail to double hill in the opener, before Zvi finished it, forcing a second set. They came within a game of forcing a second double hill encounter. Zvi pulled ahead late to claim the title 9-7.
"How are you feeling about this second straight win?" asked Upstate AL, commentator on the AZBTv stream.
"Like Jayson Shaw," said Zvi, referencing Shaw's victory at this event in 2016. "It's been a crazy week.
"I missed a lot of shots," he acknowledged. "I was grinding it, because I wasn't used to these tables. I couldn't make a ball on the break, and (Dupuis) kept getting the momentum."
A record-breaking number of entrants (33) signed on to a $500-added Second Chance tournament, available to "non-pros eliminated from the main event." Like the main event, the Second Chance finals went two sets. With Al McGuane in the hot seat, John Francisco (who'd been sent to the loss side by McGuane in a winners' side semifinal) took the opening set 3-2. By the same score, McGuane won the second set to claim the title.  Dave Shlemperis, downed by McGuane in the hot seat match 3-1, finished third, when Francisco followed loss-side victories over Brent Boemmels (3-2) and Bob Madenjian 3-1, and defeated him 3-1.
Joss NE 9-Ball Tour director Mike Zuglan thanked Steve Goulding and his Snooker's staff for their hospitality, as well as sponsors Joss Cues, Simonis, Aramith,, Heidrich Custom Cues, AZBilliards, Billiards Press, and Turning Stone Resort and Casino. The next stop on the Joss Northeast 9-Ball Tour, scheduled for March 11-12, will be a $1,500-added event ($500-added to Second Chance) – The Northeast 9-Ball Open XXIX – hosted by Trick Shot Billiards and Sports Pub in Clifton Park, NY. Zuglan also reminded prospective players about the Turning Stone Finale, set for August 31-September 3, which at present is about two-thirds full. Interested players should communicate with Zuglan soon.