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Shea wins seven on the loss side, downs Clark in finals to claim her first 2021 title

Carol V. Clark, Nicole Nester, Kia Burwell, April Hatcher, Melissa Jenkins and Linda Haywood Shea

It wasn’t quite enough to catch and overtake Caroline Pao, who’s been sitting atop the J. Pechauer Northeast Women’s Tour standings for months, but she came close. Tour director Linda Shea came into the weekend’s tour stop (July 17-18) nestled into third place behind Pao and Nicole Nester and just ahead of Kia Burwell. Pao didn’t compete on the tour’s 6th stop, which drew 19 entrants to Champion Billiards in Frederick, MD. Shea, though, got by both Nester and Burwell (Burwell, twice), won seven on the loss side and downed Carol V. Clark in the finals to claim her first 2021 event title.

The win put Shea about 15 points behind Pao, who retained her top spot. Nester slipped into third place, with Burwell in fourth place. Carol V. Clark, in the meantime, who came into the event in 8th place, made it to the hot seat and finished as runner-up to Shea, jumped three places to 5th, just behind Burwell. April Hatcher, who battled Clark in the hot seat match and finished in third place, jumped from her entrance spot at #25 to just outside the top 10.

Things started out on the right foot for Shea, but that didn’t last long. She won an opening round, double hill battle versus Burwell, only to be relegated to loss-side competition by ending up on the wrong side of her second straight double hill fight, this one against Nicole Nester. Nester went on to defeat Teri Thomas 7-4 to draw April Hatcher in one of the winners’ side semifinals. After being awarded an opening round bye, Carol V. Clark, in the meantime, downed Lynn Richard and Colleen Shoop, both 7-3, to pick up Melissa Jenkins in the other winners’ side semifinal.

Hatcher guaranteed herself a minimum, third place finish by defeating Nester 7-3 and advancing to the hot seat match. Clark and Jenkins battled to double hill before Clark was able to join Hatcher. Then she and Hatcher engaged in a double hill fight for that hot seat. Clark won it and watched, likely with some sense of foreboding, as Shea kept chalking up loss-side wins that would eventually put her into the finals.

On the loss side, Nester drew a rematch versus Shea, who was four matches into her loss-side streak with an aggregate (loss-side) score of 28-6, that had recently included victories over Shoop 7-2 and Kelly Wyatt 7-1. Jenkins picked up Burwell, who, following her opening round loss to Shea, had begun her own loss-side winning streak. Like Shea, she reached the 5/6 matches with four behind her, including wins over Billie Billing 7-4 and Teri Thomas 7-5.

Shea downed Nester 7-4, while Burwell secured the quarterfinal rematch against her with a double hill win over Jenkins. The quarterfinal rematch between Shea and Burwell shaped up as a nail-biter at the outset, but in the end, Shea pulled out in front by two to win it 7-5. Shea then downed Hatcher 7-3 for a shot at Clark, waiting for her in the hot seat.

It was clear from the outset that neither Shea nor Clark was going to give up easily in their quest to chalk up a first 2021 tour win. Shea jumped out to a quick 2-0 lead, but from that point on, through to the 9th rack, every time Shea tried to extend the lead, Clark came back to narrow that lead to one; 2-0, 2-1, 3-1, 3-2, 4-2, 4-3, 5-3. Shea broke the pattern in the 9th rack to take her first three-game lead, which she quickly extended to four and then, reaching the hill, to five at 8-3. Clark rallied to win the 12th and then, the 13th rack to make it 8-5, but Shea closed it out in rack #14 to claim the event title.

Shea thanked the ownership and staff at Championship Billiards, as well as title sponsor J. Pechauer Custom Cues, Bitzel and Associates PTPA (Physical Therapy), George Hammerbacher (Advanced Pool Instructor) and (for the live stream) Britanya E Rapp of angle aim Art. The next stop on the JPNEWT (#7) August 14-15, will be hosted by Triple Nines in Elkridge, MD.

Shea goes undefeated to win second round of her two-stop battle against Friend on JPNEWT

Kathy Friend, April Hatcher, Carol V. Clark, Linda Shea, Melissa Jenkins, Melissa Mason, Kassandra Bein, and June Prescop

When the J. Pechauer Northeast Women’s Tour got back underway in August, Linda Shea advanced all the way to the hot seat, only to have Kathy Friend, whom she’d sent to the semifinals, come back and defeat her in the final match. This past weekend (Sept. 19-20), the final matchup was the same although Friend’s path to it was significantly different. So was the outcome. Friend won five on the loss side to face Shea in their second final match in a row, but Shea hung on to complete an undefeated run and win her second stop on the shortened 2020 tour. The event drew 20 entrants to First Break Bar & Grill in Sterling, VA.

Following an opening round bye, Shea sent Christie Hurdel 7-5 and Melissa Jenkins 7-4 to the loss side to draw Carol V. Clark in one of the winners’ side semifinals. April Hatcher, in the meantime, had defeated Rumi Brown 7-4 and then gave up only three total racks in 17 games against Ceci Strain (1) and Teri Thomas (2) to face June Prescop in the other winners’ side semifinal. Prescop was responsible for sending Friend to the loss side 7-5 in a winners’ side quarterfinal.

Shea downed Clark 7-5 and in the hot seat match, faced Hatcher, who’d sent Prescop to the loss side 7-4. Shea prevailed to claim the hot seat 7-3 over Hatcher.

On the loss side, Friend opened her trip back to the finals with a 7-3 win over Lai Li and a 7-2 victory over Melissa Mason to draw Clark. Prescop picked up Melissa Jenkins, who, following her defeat at the hands of Shea, had eliminated Ceci Strain 7-5 and Kassandra Bein 7-3. 

Friend and Prescop advanced to their quarterfinal rematch. Friend defeated Clark 7-5 and Prescop just did survive a double hill fight against Jenkins. Friend prevailed 7-3 in the rematch and then went on to down Hatcher 7-5 in the semifinals.

As might have been expected, Shea and Friend locked up in a tight battle that went double hill. Shea dropped the final 9-ball to claim her second 2020 event title on the tour. The win also solidified Shea’s hold on the #1 spot in the tour standings. With Kia Burwell finishing in the tie for 13th, Friend’s second-place finish allowed her to move into the #2 spot. Burwell slipped a single place, down to #3, while Lai Li, who finished in the tie for 9th place, moved down a spot to #4.

Shea thanked the ownership and staff at First Break Bar & Grill, as well as title sponsor J. Pechauer Custom Cues, angle aim Art (Britanya E. Rapp) and Turtle Rack. The next stop on the JPNEWT, scheduled for Oct. 10-11, will be hosted by Eagle Billiards in Dickson City, PA.

Shea goes undefeated to take her first 2019 JPNEWT title

(l to r): Friend, King, Hatcher, Wong, Li, Shea, Sidbury & Gyftopoulos

The top two players on the 2018 J. Pechauer Northeast Women’s Tour, were at it again on the weekend of April 27-28, 2019. Tour director Linda Shea, who finished at the top of last year’s tour rankings went undefeated in this second stop on her tour, while Nicole King, who finished in the second spot in those 2018 tour rankings, finished in the second spot in this event, as well. The $500-added event drew 24 entrants to Markley Billiards in Norristown, PA.
In addition to the main event, which was an NAPT Div. 2: Semi-Pro Tournament, the JPNEWT held a Sunday Amateur tournament for players with 4 and under handicaps only. That event drew seven entrants and saw two ‘Jenns’ emerge from the event’s round robin format to collect the top two prizes; Jenn Tully finished in 1st place, with Jenn Sylvester as runner-up.
In the main event, Shea advanced through Ada Lio 7-5, Lisa Dougherty 7-1 and Anita Sowers 7-3 to arrive at a winners’ side semifinal match against Eugenia Gyftopoulos. King, in the meantime, was awarded an opening round bye, and then, defeated April Hatcher 7-1 and Noel Rima 7-5 to draw Lai Li in the other winners’ side semifinal.
Shea advanced to the hot seat 7-5 over Gyftopoulos, and was joined by King, who’d defeated Li 7-2. Shea claimed the hot seat 7-5 and waited on King’s return.
On the loss side, Kia Sidbury was fighting her way back from a first-round, double hill defeat at the hands of Lai Li, and after a first-round, loss-side bye, was in the midst of a four-match winning streak that was about to end. She’d downed Melissa Jenkins, Carol Clark, Noel Rima (double hill) and Suzzie Wong 7-5, to draw Gyftopoulos. Li, in the meantime, picked up Kathy Friend, who after losing double hill to Gyftopoulos on the winners’ side, had shutout Ada Lio and defeated April Hatcher 7-5 to reach her.
Gyftopoulos and Sidbury locked up in a double hill fight (Sidbury’s 4th) for advancement to the quarterfinals and Gyftopoulos was the one to advance. She was joined in the quarterfinals by Friend, who earned her rematch against Gyftopoulos by handing Li her second straight loss 7-5.
Friend went a step further, defeating Gyftopoulos 7-1 in those quarterfinals, before having her own four-match, loss-side winning streak brought to an end by King, who defeated her 7-2 in the semifinals.
The wait didn’t seem to do much harm to Shea in the finals. She bettered her score in the hot seat match by two racks, completing her undefeated run with a second victory over King; this time 7-3.
Shea thanked the ownership and staff at Markley Billiards, as well as sponsors J. Pechauer Custom Cues, Coins of the Realm, angle aim Art (Britanya E Rapp), The Turtle Rack Combo (, Baltimore City Cues and Billy Ray Bunn Cue Repair. The next stop on the JPNEWT, scheduled for May 18-19, will be hosted by First Break Bar & Grill in Sterling, VA.