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Shea comes from the loss side to take second stop on the J. Pechauer Northeast Women’s Tour

Linda Shea and Jenn Keeney

Regional pool tour rankings are generally based on a point system that takes both performance and participation into account. In 2016, Linda Shea, tour director of the J. Pechauer Northeast Women's Tour (JPNEWT), ended up at the top of the tour's end-of-year rankings, in part because she participated in all 13 stops on the tour, accumulating 1,660 tour points (two wins and among the top four finishers in nine more). By comparison, Karen Corr, who won all three of the tour's events in which she competed last year, finished in eighth place in the tour rankings.
On the weekend of April 29-30, Shea chalked up her first victory of the 2017 JPNEWT season, coming from the loss side to meet and defeat hot seat occupant, Jenn Keeney. The victory moved Shea into the 2017 tour's #1 ranking slot. The event drew a short field of 15 entrants to Markley's Billiards in Norristown, PA.
Shea opened her bid against 2016's #2-ranked player, Kia Sidbury, who, though she failed to chalk up a tour win last year, participated in 12 of the tour's 13 stops, and accumulated the second highest number of total points (835). Shea downed Sidbury in this event's opening round 8-4, before being sent to the loss side by Carol Clark 7-5. Clark advanced to a winners' side semifinal against Keeney, while Sharon O'Hanlon (#3 in 2016) squared off against Boye Lu. Keeny moved into the hot seat match with an 8-6 win over Clark, and was joined by Lu, who'd moved O'Hanlon to the loss side 7-5. By the same score, Keeney sent Lu to the semifinals, and waited on Shea's return.
On the loss side, Shea got by Melissa Jenkins 9-4 and Nicole King 9-6 to pick up O'Hanlon. Elaine Wilson, who'd been sent to the loss side by O'Hanlon, eliminated Suzanne Sellet 7-2 and Kathleen Lawless 7-3 to pick up Clark.
Shea advanced to the quarterfinals with a 9-5 win over O'Hanlon. Clark joined her by squeaking past Wilson in a double hill battle. Shea flexed her muscles in that quarterfinal match, shutting Clark out in their re-match, and then downed Lu in the semifinals 7-5. Shea completed her first title run with a 9-6 victory over Keeney in the extended-race-to-9 finals.
In addition to the second place prize money, Keeney's finish afforded her a paid slot in a North American Pool Tour event, scheduled for August at Shooter's in Grayslake, IL. The next stop on the JPNEWT, scheduled for the weekend of May 20-21, will be hosted by First Break Cafe and Billiards in Sterling, VA.

Jia Li gets by Briana Miller twice to go undefeated on JPNEWT

Jia Li

In only her second appearance on the 2016 J. Pechauer Northeast Women's Tour, Jia Li jumped from 28th place in the tour rankings to a spot among the top 10. She did this with an undefeated run on the tour's seventh stop on the weekend of August 6-7. The $500-added event drew 19 entrants to a new venue on the tour – Level2 Billiards, in Somerdale, NJ.
Two wins, including a 7-1 victory over tour director Linda Shea, who leads the tour's ranking list, put Li into a winners' side semifinal against Jenn Keeney. Three wins put Briana Miller in the other winners' side semifinal versus Boye Lu. Li downed Keeney 7-2 and in the hot seat match, faced Miller, who'd sent Lu to the loss side 7-1. Li took the first of two against Miller 7-4 and waited on her return.
On the loss side, Keeney picked up Meredith Lynch, who'd been sent to the loss side by Miller, survived a double hill match versus Elaine Wilson, and defeated Emily Herpel 7-3. Lu drew Shea, who, following her defeat at the hands of Li, downed Nicole Monaco 7-4 and Nicole Fleming 7-1.
Shea and Lu locked up in a double hill fight that eventually sent Shea to the quarterfinals. She was joined by Lynch, who'd ended Keeney's weekend 7-2. Shea took the quarterfinal match 7-4 over Lynch, who moved up a spot or two in the rankings behind Shea, Karen Corr and Kia Sidbury
Shea now faced Miller in the semifinals. Miller, last seen on the tour playing runner-up to Karen Corr in June, thwarted Shea's attempt for a re-match against Li with a 7-5 win. Li, looking for her first 2016 JPNEWT event title (she'd placed third in a stop back in May), ended any thoughts Miller had about winning her first 2016 JPNEWT stop. They fought to double hill before Li finished to claim the title.

Friend goes undefeated to take Stop 10 on the JPNEWT

Over the last few months, as the J. Pechauer Northeast Women's Tour has been closing in on its final 2015 event (Stop # 11; November 7-8 at Triple Nines in Elkridge, MD), the battle for any individual event title has almost been less significant than the jockeying for position on the tour rankings.  These standings are important because of their significance in determining who, from the tour, will be selected to compete in the WPBA Regional Tour Championship in January. Though the number of women to be selected for that RTC has yet to be determined, the women of the JPNEWT know, as the season draws to a close, that the closer they are to the top, the better their chances. 
Following tour stop # 10, held on the weekend of October 17-18, all ten of the tour's Top 10 players remained in the Top 10, although some of them were in different positions than they'd occupied prior to the event. Kathy Friend, for example, who won the $1,000-added event that drew 19 entrants to Pro Shot Billiards in Dickson City, PA, moved from her #7 slot to #5.
The runner-up, tour director Linda Shea, remained in the #2 spot, as did Karen Corr in the #1 spot, even though she didn't compete in this event (her eight straight wins through September made her #1 tour ranking unapproachable). Nicole Monaco, who finished in the tie for 9th place at this most recent event, maintained her position at #3, although she was joined (tied) by Jia Li, who came in at #4, and finished in the tie for 5th place. Kia Sidbury stayed put in the #6 ranking slot, while Briana Miller, who didn't compete, dropped from #5 to Friend's previous spot at #7. Tina Scott stayed where she was at #9. Kim Whitman, who didn't compete, and Nicole Fleming, who did, switched positions; Whitman dropped from # 8 to #10, while Fleming moved up from #10 to #8.
In addition to its significance in the overall tour rankings, this most recent event was a qualifier for the WPBA Masters Tournament, set for February 3-7 at the Soaring Eagle Casino and Resort in Mt. Pleasant, MI. It was a good time for Friend to return to the JPNEWT winners' circle, where she hasn't been in nine years. The last time she took a JPNEWT title, at Comet Billiards in Parsippany, NJ, on June 25, 2006, was also the first time she took a JPNEWT title.  In that earlier event, she lost her first match and won six on the loss side to meet and defeat hot seat occupant, Barbara Stock.
At this most recent event, Friend opted out of the loss-side run, in favor of the undefeated route, which, after an opening round bye, took her through victories over Tina Scott, Sharon O'Hanlon, and Boye Lu, before meeting up with Linda Shea in a winners' side semifinal. Kia Sidbury, in the meantime, had gotten by Meredith Lynch and Judie Wilson, to pick up Dawn Fox in the other winners' side semifinal. Friend and Shea locked up in a double hill fight, their first of two, before Friend advanced to the hot seat match. She was joined by Sidbury, who sent Fox west 7-1. Friend claimed the hot seat 7-2 over Sidbury and waited in the hot seat for what turned out to be Shea's return.
On the loss side, Shea picked up Jia Li, who'd been defeated by Dawn Fox in the opening round, and embarked on a four-match, loss-side streak that included victories over Judie Wilson 7-5 and Borana Andoni 7-1. Fox drew Nicole Fleming, who'd gotten by Lynch 7-3 and Boye Lu 7-4 to reach her.
Shea eliminated Li 7-3 and in the quarterfinals, met up with Fox, who'd ousted Fleming 7-2. Shea took the quarterfinal match 7-4 over Fox, and then downed Sidbury 7-5, for a second shot at Friend. 
Technically, their second meeting, in the finals, was not a double hill match. Friend took rack #13 to finish ahead of Shea at 7-6, but had Shea, coming from the loss side, won that rack, the match would have been extended to nine games. Friend chalked up the win to claim the title, win $600 and qualify for the WPBA Masters tournament in February. 

Shea finishes strong to take 9th stop on JPNEWT

It looked, in the early going, as if tour director Linda Shea was going to breeze through the field that had signed up to compete in the 9th stop of the J. Pechauer Northeast Women's Tour on the weekend of October 3-4. She gave up a single rack to her first opponent, three to her second and none to her third, before going on a three-match, tough-fight streak that included two double-hill wins to complete an undefeated run which allowed her to claim her first JPNEWT title since last November. The $500-added event drew 23 entrants to Markley Billiards in Norristown, PA.
Shea had to get by Dawn Fox twice to claim the event title; the first time, in a winners' side semifinal, as Jia Li and Meredith Lynch squared off in the other one. Shea navigated the first of her two straight double hill matches to get into the hot seat match against Lynch, who'd defeated Li 7-1. Shea claimed the hot seat over Lynch in her second double hill match, and waited on the return of Fox.
Over on the loss side, Fox, already assured of her best finish on the 2015 tour, picked up Nicole Fleming, who'd been sent west by Lynch in the opening round of play, and was in the midst of a four-match, loss-side streak that included a 7-1 victory over Boye Lu, a 7-3 win over Kia Sidbury and was about to end. Li drew Nicole Monaco, who, like Fleming, had been sent over in the opening round of play (by Shea), and was in the midst of her own five-match, loss-side streak that included victories over Denise Reeve (double hill), and Kathy Friend (7-4) and had one match to go. 
Fox ended Fleming's streak 7-1, while Monaco got by Li 7-5. Fox ended Monaco's streak in the quarterfinal match 7-3, and then defeated Lynch by the same score in the semifinals. Shea, down 4-1 to Fox, came back to win the final 7-5 and claim the title.
The victory allowed Linda Shea to maintain her #2 spot in the 2015 JPNEWT rankings, while Dawn Fox's second-place finish notched her up (from #26) to within striking distance of the tour's top 10 players. Fox had defeated #11, Nicole Fleming, who, as a result of her finish in the tie for fifth place had moved among the top 10. Judie Wilson, who entered the event in the #10 spot, finished in the tie for 13th place, which dropped her out of the 10th spot, but five points ahead of Lynch, who finished third.
The next stop on the JPNEWT, scheduled for October 17-18, and hosted by ProShot Billiards in Dickson City, PA will be a WPBA qualifier for the Soaring Eagle 2016 Masters Tournament at the Soaring Eagle Casino and Resort in Mount Pleasant, MI.