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Randall goes undefeated to win ‘599 and lower’ MD State 8-Ball Championships

Chenxu “Frank” Wei and Charlie Randall

It would appear that Fargo Rates of 599 and lower, combined with the game of 8-ball, are a kind of ‘sweet spot’ for attracting competitors to a pool tournament. Those were the parameters of this past weekend’s (Feb. 18-19) MD State 8-Ball Championships, held under the auspices of On the Hill Productions, and a full field of 96 of them showed up. 

Charlie Randall went undefeated through the field to win it. Chenxu “Frank” Wei, who lost his first match and won nine on the loss side to face Randall in the finals, battled to double hill in those finals before Randall claimed the title. Seth Harris went undefeated to the hot seat match and lost to Wei in the semifinals. Fairly impressive for a trio of competitors looking for their first regional tour title. The event drew its 96 entrants to Brews & Cues on the Boulevard in Glen Burnie, MD. 

Harris, though he had to battle to double hill twice on his way to the hot seat match, ended up with a better game-winning percentage when he got there than Randall did. Harris won twice as many games as he lost; 36-18, 66%. The two back-to-back double hill matches (versus Brad Kresge and Bill Bickford) were sandwiched between two matches in which Harris gave up only a single rack (to Robert Hess and William Bracey), his opening match in which he gave up two (to Kevin Ransel) and a winners’ side semifinal in which he gave up four racks to Alex Parker.

Randall, awarded a bye, played one less match and through his first four, had decided on a score of 6-4 to advance. He downed Rob Pistorio, Jeff Spelman, Edward Mejia and Kane Miller by that score and then, in the other winners’ side semifinal, ran into Moe Mozzannar, who battled him to double hill, before Randall prevailed. He arrived at the hot seat match with an aggregate score of 30-21 (58%). He only gave up two racks to Harris and claimed the hot seat.

On the loss side, “Frank” Wei was working on his nine-match, loss-side winning streak that could have been an 11-match streak had Raymond Walters and Andres Ruiz not forfeited out of Wei’s first and third loss-side match. Four of the eight that Wei did play went double hill, including the last two that put him in the finals. He’d recently eliminated Vince Biondo 6-1 and Bill Bickford 6-3 to draw Parker. Moe Mozzannar picked up Danny Hauser, who’d defeated Joseph Sennett 6-2 and Edward Mejia, double hill, to reach him.

Wei downed Parker and Hauser defeated Mozzannar, both 6-2. Wei went on a back-to-back double-hill run, defeating Hauser in the quarterfinals and Harris in the semifinals. He locked up in his third straight double hill battle in the finals against Randall, but Randall had the last word, dropping the final 8-ball and claiming the event title.

On the Hill Productions (Loye Bolyard) thanked the ownership and staff at Brews & Cues On the Boulevard for their hospitality, along with sponsors Alley Kat Cue Sports,, Aramith Balls, Simonis Cloth, TAP Chesapeake Bay Region, Safe Harbor Retirement Planners, along with Bull Carbon, Gina Cunningham, Keller Williams, Integrity and

On The Hill Productions will return to Brews & Cues on the Boulevard on the weekend of March 11-12 for the MD State Women’s 8-Ball Championships.

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Wilkie chalks up his first 2019 win on the Action Pool Tour

Shaun Wilkie

Though he’s in the midst of a fairly good year at the tables – runner-up in Maryland’s 9-Ball Bar Table and State 9-Ball Tournaments, 3rd in that state’s 8-Ball Championships and cash payouts in six other events, including Turning Stone XXXII (9th), the SBE Pro Players Championship (13th) and the US Open 9-Ball Championship (49th) – Shaun Wilkie had yet to record a 2019 win. Until this past weekend, when he went undefeated on the Action Pool Tour; according to our records, his first win on the tour in just over a year. Wilkie came back from a hot seat loss to RJ Carmona to meet and defeat him in the finals. The 10-ball event drew 44 entrants to Breakers Sky Lounge in Herndon, VA on the weekend of September 14-15.
It was Wilkie’s third appearance on APT’s 2019 tour; he finished third at a stop in August and just out of the money at a stop in June. On this weekend, he got by Jim Davis 7-2, shut out Carlton Pelzer, downed Scott Roberts 7-4 and defeated the tour’s #2-ranked competitor, Steve Fleming 7-1 to draw Scott Haas in one of the winners’ side semifinals. RJ Carmona, in the meantime, whose runner-up finish would propel him into third place among the tour’s players, defeated Reymart Lim 7-4, Alex Parker 7-2, Tuan Chau 7-1 and Dave Hunt 7-5 to arrive at his winners’ side semifinal match against Kenny Miller.
Carmona defeated Miller 7-2, while Wilkie was moving into the hot seat match with a shutout over Scott Haas. Carmona claimed the hot seat 7-4 over Wilkie and waited on his return.
Miller moved to the loss side and picked up Larry Kressel, who’d been defeated by Dave Hunt in the second round and was in the midst of a six-match, loss-side winning streak that had included recent wins over the tour’s #1 and #5 competitors, Chris Bruner and Reymart Lim, both 6-3. Haas drew Nilbert Lim, in the midst of a five-match, loss-side winning streak that was about to end.
Haas ended Lim’s streak 6-3, as Kressel extended his with a 6-2 win over Miller. In the quarterfinals that followed, Haas downed Kressel 6-2 for a second shot against Wilkie. It proved to be Kressel’s best finish on the 2019 APT. Wilkie ended Haas’ short loss-side trip 6-2 in the semifinals.
Wilkie completed his first 2019 win on the tour with a 9-7 victory over Carmona in the finals. The victory moved Wilkie up on the APT rankings ladder from outside the top 25 to #14. It elevated Carmona from just outside the top 10 to #3.
A Second Chance event drew 10 players and saw Steve Fleming down Greg Sabins twice 5-4, 6-2 (hot seat and finals) to claim the $100 first-place prize.
Tour directors Kris Wylie and Tiger Baker thanked the ownership and staff at Breakers Sky Lounge for their hospitality, as well as sponsors Predator Cues, Viking Cues, Simonis Cloth, Aramith Balls, Brown’s Mechanical LLC, Kamui, Diamond Billiard Products, Ozone Billiards, CSI, Grant Wylie Photography and George Hammerbacher, Advanced Pool Instructor. The next stop on the Action Pool Tour, scheduled for the weekend of October 12-13, will be the VA State 8-Ball Championships. A Double Point event, it will be hosted by Q Master Billiards in Virginia Beach, VA.

West comes from the loss side to win his second Bob Stocks Memorial title

Kevin West (Grant Wylie Photography)

The annual Bob Stocks Memorial Tournament, held under the auspices of the Action Pool Tour, has developed something of a reputation for crowning new winners every year. Until this most recent, 13th annual tournament, only one competitor, Shaun Wilkie, had ever won it twice. On the weekend of April 13-14, Kevin West became the second. Having won this event in 2017, and after skipping the following year, which saw Zoren James Aranas and Dennis Orcollo battle in the finals, West returned to give it another shot. He was sent to the loss side by Brian Bryant in a winners’ side semifinal and came back after winning three to challenge and defeat Bryant in the finals. The event drew 31 entrants to First Break Café in Sterling, VA.
West was challenged early in this one; his first match, a double hill affair that eventually sent Paul Helms to the loss side. West moved on to defeat former Bob Stock Memorial Champion Brandon Shuff and Scott Roberts, both 9-5, to draw Bryant in one of the winners’ side semifinals. Bryant had defeated Alvin Thomas 9-6, Alex Parker, 9-3 and Paul Swinson 9-4 to meet West. Scott Haas, in the meantime, defeated Ali Gee 9-1, Andrew Manning 9-7 and Graham Swinson 9-3 to draw Chris Bruner in the other winners’ side semifinal.
Bryant sent West west 9-7 and in the hot seat match, faced Haas, who’d defeated Bruner 9-7. Bryant claimed the hot seat 9-5 Haas, and waited on the return of West.
On the loss side, West drew Steve Fleming, the tour’s #4-ranked player on the tour coming into the event, who, after being defeated by Chris Bruner 9-6 in a winners’ side quarterfinal, had defeated Bruce Choyce 7-1 and Brandon Shuff 7-5 to meet West. Bruner picked up Scott Roberts, who’d survived a double hill battle versus Mark Nanashee and eliminated Kirill Rutman to face Bruner.
West and Roberts advanced to the quarterfinals; West, 7-3 over Fleming and Roberts, 7-4 over Bruner, denying West a second shot at him. West took the quarterfinal match 7-5 over Roberts and then, downed Haas 7-4 in the semifinals.
The tightly contested final match between West and Bryant featured the maximum number of games possible in a race-to-11; 21, also known as double hill, but recognized, as well, as a lot of games to play to decide a winner. West dropped the final 9-Ball to claim his second Bob Stocks Memorial title.
Tour directors Kris Wylie and Tiger Baker thanked the ownership and staff at First Break Café, as well as sponsors East Coast Landscaping, Inc., Cue Sports International (CSI), Chix Cabinets Direct, Grant Wylie (professional photographer), Brown’s Mechanical, LLC, and George Hammerbacher Advanced Pool Instructor. The next stop on the APT, will take players “Back to the Beach,” at an event scheduled for the weekend of May 18-19 at Q Master Billiards in Virginia Beach, VA.

Wilkie chalks up second victory on the Action Pool Tour

Shaun Wilkie

It was, in a way, the final that might have happened at the 2017 VA State 10-Ball Championships in February, had it not been for Dennis Orcollo. At that event, the second stop on the 2017 Action Pool Tour (APT), Orcollo was sent to the loss side by Shaun Wilkie in a winners' side semifinal, and immediately picked up Mike Davis, who was in the middle of a six-match, loss-side winning streak. Orcollo shut Davis out, advanced to the finals and claimed the title with a victory over Wilkie.
On the weekend of April 15-16, at the fourth stop on the APT, Wilkie and Davis got the chance they never had to face each other in the earlier tournament. They met twice in this one; once in the hot seat and again, in the finals. Davis took the first one, but Wilkie came back to chalk up a 'deuces wild' victory in the finals. Wilkie claimed his second match against Davis (who was playing in his second APT event of the year), and, following his victory on the tour's second stop, picked up his second APT title of the year. The event drew 70 entrants to Breakers Sky Lounge in Herndon, VA. 
In a concurrently-run Ladies event, which drew a short field of 11 entrants, Nicole King and Tina Malm played twice as well, each looking for their second title on the APT Tour. Malm had taken the season opener in February, and King claimed Stop #3 last month. Like Davis in the Open, Malm claimed the hot seat, but like Wilkie, King came back from the semifinals to defeat Malm in the finals and claim the title. It was the second time in a row on this young APT season that Wilkie and King had won the Open and Ladies titles.
Wilkie got off to a flying start in the Open. After an opening round bye, he played four matches to get into a winners' side semifinal match against Larry Kressel (runner-up to Chris Byers in the Amateur event of the Super Billiards Expo earlier in the month). He'd given up only five racks total in those opening four matches, which included a shutout over Jenny Acot, a single rack each to Steve Ball and Aldrin Manreal, and three against Greg Sabins in a winners' side quarterfinal. Davis, too, opened with a shutout (over Jon Crider) and gave up only six racks in his four-match run to a winners' side semifinal against Alex Parker. Davis gave up three to Jamey Mellott, two to Justin Powers and (obviously picking up some speed) one to Chris Funk.
Wilkie sent Kressel to the loss side 7-3, as Davis was sending Parker over 7-1. In what proved to be their only double hill match, individually or together, Davis claimed the hot seat, and waited for Wilkie to get back.
On the loss side, Kressel drew Matt Krah, who, following a defeat at the hands of Parker, downed Jamey Mellott 6-3, and Jimmy Varia 6-4. Parker picked up Brian Dietzenbach, who'd lost to Kressel, and then defeated Tom Zippler 6-3, before surviving a double hill battle versus Greg Sabins. Kressel eliminated Krah 6-2, and in the quarterfinals, met up with Dietzenbach, who'd ended Parker's weekend 6-4.
Kressel appeared to be a man on a mission in those quarterfinals, and shut Dietzenbach out for a crack at Shaun Wilkie in the semifinals. It turned out to be something of a 'mission impossible' as Wilkie allowed Dietzenbach only two racks in those semifinals for his own second shot against Davis in the hot seat. Now, it was Wilkie who was on a mission. Mission accomplished with a 9-3 win over Davis in the finals.
King wins her second Ladies APT event of the year
Nicole King's second straight Ladies APT victory took five matches to claim, two of them in matches against Tina Malm. King opened with a shutout over Giulletta Dahl, and a 5-2 win over Kristin Horgen, before coming up against Judie Wilson in a winners' side semifinal. Malm played only four matches total. An opening round bye was followed by a 5-1 victory over Deeqa Nur, which set Malm up in a winners' side semifinal against Sharita Green.
King downed Wilson 5-3, while Malm was chalking up a shutout over Green. Malm claimed the hot seat 5-3.
On the loss side, Wilson picked up Nur, who, following her defeat at the hands of Malm, had (after an opening round, loss-side bye) Lai Li 4-1. Green drew Sierra Reams, who'd defeated Tina Scott 4-1 and Melissa Mason, double hill, to reach her.
Nur survived a double hill fight against Wilson, and in the quarterfinals met up with Reams, who'd shut out Green. Nur took the quarterfinals 4-2 over Reams, but was shut out by King in the semifinals. King downed Malm 7-2 in the finals, denying Malm her second APT title to claim it for herself.