Archive Page

Two veteran opponents – Kennedy and Meglino – split top prizes on Sunshine State Pro Am Tour

(l to r): Tommy Kennedy, Scott Rohleder & Anthony Meglino

Though Tommy Kennedy and Anthony Meglino were the last two left standing during the season finale of the Sunshine State Pro Am Tour on December 7-8, they were far from being the only veteran Southeast USA pool players among the 42 entrants. Many of these players sport resumes that date back to the early years of the century. Kennedy, of course, has a resume that began, more or less (not including his life as a road warrior) with his victory over Johnny Archer (twice) in the 1992 US Open 9-Ball Championships and was updated this past weekend with his undefeated run through the Sunshine State Pro Am’s season finale field. Meglino, who finished as runner-up in this event has a history that dates (through AZBilliards) back to 2007, when he finished 5th at a stop on Kennedy’s Southeast Open 9-Ball Tour; Kennedy finished 7th at that event, which was won by Nathan Rose, who finished in the tie for 5th place at this most recent event and concluded the 2019 Sunshine State Pro Am season as its Player of the Year.
This inter-connected, one-big-happy-family, $500-added event drew its 42 entrants to Park Ave. Billiards in Orange Park, FL. Though Kennedy and Meglino were the finalists, at 3 a.m. on Sunday morning, they opted out of a final match, leaving Kennedy, the undefeated occupant of the hot seat, as the official winner.
They did meet in the event, once, in a winners’ side quarterfinal. They battled to double hill before Kennedy prevailed and moved on to face Andrew Pettenger in one of the two winners’ side semifinals. Meanwhile, Scott Rohleder (a relatively new member of this family) survived a double hill, winners’ side quarterfinal fight against Nick Applebee to draw the aforementioned Nathan Rose in the other winners’ side semifinal.
Two double hill matches sent Rose and Pettenger to the loss side, advancing Kennedy and Rohleder to the hot seat match. Kennedy claimed the hot seat 7-3 over Rohleder in what proved to be his last match of the weekend.
On the loss side, Rose ran into another marquee matchup against Meglino, who, after his defeat at the hands of Kennedy had defeated the tour’s top junior player Trenton White 7-5 and David Singleton 7-1. Pettenger drew David Grossman, who, after a second-round loss to Rohleder, set out on a six-match, loss-side winning streak that had most recently included victories over Clint Nichols 7-3 and a double hill win over James Sandaler.
Pettenger put an end to Grossman’s loss-side streak 7-3 and advanced to the quarterfinals. He was joined by Meglino, but not before he and Rose had battled to double hill. Meglino then eliminated Pettenger 7-4 in those quarterfinals.
Meglino appeared to be picking up some speed, after his successful match against Rose. His victory over Pettenger was followed by a 7-2 victory over Rohleder in the semifinals.
He and Kennedy then opted out of the final match. Kennedy went into ‘the books’ as the event’s official winner.
Tour directors Janene Phillips and Bobby Garza thanked Carl Watt and his Park Ave. Billiards staff for their hospitality, as well as title sponsor Predator Cues, Central Florida USA Pool League, Stitch it to me Embroidery, Diamond Products & Cyclop Balls, AZ Billiards & Cue Sports Studios for streaming. The Sunshine State Pro Am Tour will return on February 1, 2020 with a season opener at Stroker’s in Palm Harbor, FL. At that event, they will present the 2019 Player Awards, to include recognition of Nathan Rose as its Player of the Year, Trenton White as its Top Junior and Stephanie Mitchell as Lady of the Year.

Singleton downs Fitch in finals to capture Sunshine State Pro Am Bar Box Championship

(l to r): Andrew Pettenger, David Singleton & Shannon Fitch

David Singleton’s victory at the Sunshine State Pro Am’s Amateur Bar Box Championships on the weekend of November 16-17, was not only his first victory on the tour, it officially made 2019 his best earnings year to date. At two previous stops on the tour, back in January and July, he’d finished in both in the tie for 9th place. He and Brian McBride finished in the tie for 5th place in September at the tour’s 2nd Annual Big Dawg Scotch Doubles Tournament. According to available records, Singleton has only cashed in five events in the past three years; the extent of his known activity at the tables. Shannon Fitch, on the other hand, while also in the midst of his best earnings year to date, has cash-winning records dating back over 20 years, was also looking to chalk up his first victory on the Sunshine State Pro Am Tour. The $2,200-added event drew 84 players to Racks Billiards in Sandford, FL.
It was a five-match march to their first meeting in the hot seat. Singleton followed an opening round bye with victories over Randall McLuckie, Jose Guerro Baez, Christopher Anderson and Bobby Garza (double hill) to draw Jon Gore in one of the winners’ side semifinals. Fitch, also opening with a bye, advanced through Thomas White, Hector Ortiz, Robert Noon and the tour’s #1-ranked competitor going into this event, Nathan Rose, to arrive at a winners’ side semifinal matchup against David Jacobs.
Fitch downed Jacobs 9-5, as Singleton was busy sending Gore to the loss side 9-7. In their first of two, Fitch claimed the hot seat 9-3 and waited for Singleton’s return from the semifinals.
On the loss side, Gore drew Andrew Pettenger, who, after an opening round bye, had lost to Mike Delawder in the second round, and embarked on a seven-match, loss-side winning streak that would take him as far as the semifinals. He’d most recently defeated Nathan Rose 7-6 and Jai Smith 7-5. Jacobs drew Garza, who after his loss to Singleton had eliminated Racks’ owner Pedro Botta 7-2 and Jose Guerro Baez 7-5.
Garza and Jacobs locked up in a double hill fight that eventually sent Jacobs to the quarterfinals. Pettenger joined him after defeating Gore 7-5. Pettenger chalked up the last match of his loss-side streak 7-5 over Jacobs, before Singleton defeated him 6-2 in the semifinals.
For the finals, the race was extended to 11 games. Singleton won it 11-7 to claim the event title and move up significantly, to within the top 10, of the tour’s highest-ranked players.
Tour directors Janene Phillips and Bobby Garza thanked Pedro Botta and his Rack’s staff for their hospitality, as well as title sponsor Predator Cues, Cue Sports Studios (for streaming), Leah Nusbaum Photography, Stitch-It-To-Me Embroidery, Diamond Products, Cyclop Balls, Central Florida USA Pool League and AZBilliards. The next stop on the Sunshine State Pro Am Tour, scheduled for Saturday, December 7, will be hosted by Park Ave. Billiards in Orange Park, FL.

Pettinger and Ellis: Last Men Standing at Felt 9-Ball Knock Out

Andrew “ATM” Pettinger, Jay Hlavachek, Matt Driste and Tony Piazza

The inaugural event of the 2012 Felt Pool Tournament Series was a successful one. On January 21-22, Felt Billiards of Englewood, Colorado hosted the 9-Ball Knock Out, a big table 9-ball tournament with two events, an open two-day main event that started Saturday morning and an A’s & Down event that began Sunday morning. As a fun format, players received the option to “BUY A BYE.” At the time of sign up, the first 16 open players and the first 8 amateur players could purchase a guaranteed bye in the second round which also guaranteed they would not play their first match before noon.

The main event kicked off Saturday morning with a 32-player field and the A’s & Down filled with a full 24-player field with 8 byes.  A handful of A players opted to also try their luck on Saturday. For Mike Ellis of Aurora, that extra table time on Saturday paid off as he cruised through the field on Sunday.

Saturday drew an elite field of players, spanning three different states. Top player Mike Dudack from Casper, Wyoming came to try his luck, along with women’s professional player Anna Kostanian and husband Peter Sucre of Albuquerque, New Mexico. Players flocked from the North and South. Jim Calderon came from Pueblo, as well as Colorado Springs road partners Ruben Silva and Frank Ubaniak. Fans were also treated to appearances by touring professionals Melissa Little “The Viper” and Laura Smith.

The rail was jam packed all weekend with savvy spectators who demanded a good show and were not disappointed. Along with the top-notch live pool, fans and players were entertained between matches with the broadcast of the live streaming from the 14th Annual Derby City Classic that was shown on the big screen in the dining area. This professional event kept away local top players, Mark Haddad and recent transplant Marc Vidal.

Both main event and Sunday event went smoothly, even accommodating for the regular Sunday afternoon 10-ball tournament which started a couple hours late. All three finals wrapped up by Sunday evening. In the main event, it was a race-to-seven, winner-break format, using the Magic Ball Racks. After escaping a couple close calls from James Winter and Matt Driste, Andrew Pettenger “ATM” went undefeated for all the marbles. Driste, the dark horse who’s been out of the scene until recently, came out like gang-busters, defeating Kostanian 7-0, as well as victories over Jay Hlavachek and Greg Romero before facing “ATM” for the a-side finals.

In the end, Hlavachek came back through the b-side but was no match for Piazza who would claim that match 7-0 and advance to the semi-finals. Piazza also escaped a close call earlier against Urbaniak. After defeating Hlavachek, he also took out Driste but would find himself no match for Pettenger. In the final rack, Pettenger was ahead 6-5 and opted to play a safety on the 8 ball which left Piazza a safety in return. Pettenger was now faced with a long, touchy 8 ball. After much deliberation, he fired at it, missing the pocket but banking it two rails into the opposite pocket leaving himself straight in on the 9 ball and that was all she wrote.

As the main event brought many close matches, the A’s & Down saw quite a few lop-sided ones. Ellis bought himself a first round head start but didn’t really need it. Of his three rounds after that, he only gave up three games and went undefeated until Joe Conway came along. When they first met, Ellis took that match 4-0. Conway would make his way back for a rematch. In the first round of the finals, Conway returned the favor with 4-0 of his own. Keeping with the theme, Ellis prevailed in the second set 3-0 for the title.

Dustin Yeager of Aurora and Winfield Hong of Centennial both also made a splash on Sunday with their third and fourth place finishes. Yeager was a last minute wild card when a player dropped out the day before. The A’s & Down field was filled by Thursday night. 

Felt proudly added $700 between the two events and will continue to add even more money to upcoming events. For more information about the 2012 Tournament Series, visit Felt Billiards is located at 101 West Floyd Avenue in Englewood, Colorado and is home to the best weekly tournaments, nightly food and drink specials, and a home away from home for players and spectators alike. Check out for more information and a complete calendar of events.

Special thanks go to our sponsors for this event: Rocky Mountain USA Pool League (, Access Printing in Englewood (, and the Magic Ball Rack courtesy of CueSports International ( Special recognition also goes to Don Posri and Sean Thamrongpradith for their thankless hard work all weekend. Additional sponsorship opportunities are available for the tournament series. Contact Felt for more information.