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Ward goes undefeated to win his first Great Southern Billiard Tour stop

Shannon Daulton, Scotty Ward, Daniel Autrey and owner Marty Opyd

Scotty Ward's undefeated, first win on the Great Southern Billiard Tour was almost overshadowed by a 15-year-old competitor named Hunter White, who lost his opening match and won 10 in a row on the losers' side before finishing third. The $1,000-added event drew 70 entrants to Legends Billiards in Inman, SC on the weekend of February 28-March 1.
Ward moved among the winners' side final four and squared off against Matt Bulfin, while Daniel Autrey and Gary Cairnes met up in the other winners' side semifinal. Ward defeated Bulfin 8-4, and in the hot seat match, met up with Autrey, who'd sent Cairnes to the loss side 5-4 (Cairnes racing to 7). Ward and Autrey would end up playing twice; first, in the battle for the hot seat, won by Ward 8-4.
On the loss side, co-owner April Bradley, playing as a "3," was busy becoming the highest female finisher in the event, getting as far as the tie for 17th place; no small feat for a "3" in a field of 70 players. The youngster White, in the midst of his own "no small feat," chalked up loss-side wins number six and seven against David Lowery (6-1) and Ryan Hollingsworth (6-6, Hollingsworth racing to 9) and drew Bulfin. Cairnes picked up Josh Newman, who'd eliminated Brad Stone 9-3 and shut out Zach Baker to reach him. 
Four of the last five matches in the event went double hill. Newman moved into the quarterfinals with a 9-2 victory over Cairnes, while White played the first of his own three straight double hill matches; the first, defeating Bulfin. White then picked up his last victory, defeating Newman in the quarterfinals, double hill.
Autrey ended White's nine-match, loss-side winning streak with a double hill win in the semifinals. Ward then completed his undefeated run and first GSBT win with a double hill second victory over Autrey in the finals.
Tour director Shannon Daulton thanked co-owners Marty Opyd and April Bradley for their hospitality.

Batten goes undefeated to win his first GSBT title, while Stone stops Britt in semifinals

Shannon Daulton, Jeff Batten, Brad Stone and owner Brent Hudgens

As the February 7-8 stop on the Great Southern Billiard Tour wound down to its final 12 players (four on the winners' side, eight on the loss side), the lower handicaps were doing quite well against the more veteran competitors. Two players who only had to win four games to win a match advanced to the hot seat, and in the end, played in the finals, as well. While Jeff Batten defeated Brad Stone twice to capture his first GSBT title, it should be noted that Stone was the one who had to travel to the one-loss side and face Phillip Britt. Britt had to win nine games to win a match and was in the midst of an eight match, loss-side winning streak that Stone brought to an end. The $1,000-added event drew 45 entrants to Shore Thing Billiards in Myrtle Beach, SC.
As GSBT veterans like Britt, Greg Dix and Jeff Abernathy were working on the loss side, Batten and Stone advanced to the winners' side semifinals. Batten met and defeated David Tootle (racing to 6) 4-4, as Stone was busy sending Ray Floyd to the loss side 4-3. Batten claimed the hot seat, and waited on Stone's return, no doubt rooting for him in the semifinals versus Britt.
On the loss side, Tootle was the one who had the misfortune to draw Britt, who'd been defeated in the opening round, and had won six on the loss side already, including a 9-2 win over Paul Durgin and a decidedly tighter 9-6 win over Abernathy. Floyd drew Paul Bailey, who'd defeated Chris Gentile 7-4 and eliminated Dix in a double hill fight. Bailey and Britt advanced to the quarterfinals, handing Floyd and Tootle their second straight loss; Bailey 7-4 over Floyd and Britt 9-4 over Tootle.
Britt then completed his loss-side winning streak with a 9-3 win over Bailey in the quarterfinals. He chalked up six in the semifinals versus Stone, but by then, Stone had won the four games he needed for a second shot at Batten in the hot seat.  The final match was a straight-up race to four that went double hill before Batten prevailed to record his first GSBT victory.
Tour director Shannon Daulton, fresh off his win in the Banks division of the Derby City Classic, thanked the ownership and staff at Shore Thing Billiards for their continuing support. The next stop on the GSBT, scheduled for February 28-March 1, will be hosted by Legends Billiards in Inman, SC. 

Stone, about to become a Marine, takes two out of three vs. Norris to win his first GSBT stop

Shannon Daulton, Brad Stone, Christi Norris and owner Brent Hudgins

It was the first time that either Brad Stone or Christy Norris had appeared in a Great Southern Billiard Tour final. They'd met earlier in a winners' side semifinal, with Stone advancing to the hot seat, and Norris coming back from a three-match sojourn to the losers' bracket. Stone took two out of three against Norris to claim his first GSBT title, approximately three weeks ahead of reporting for duty with the United States Marine Corps. The $800-added event, drew 39 entrants to Shore Thing Billiards in Myrtle Beach, SC on the weekend of December 13-14.
The first of the three meetings between Stone and Norris was a double hill affair that moved Stone into the hot seat match and sent Norris to the losers' bracket. Stone was joined in the winners' side final by Rich Anderson, who'd defeated Zach Courtwright 8-2. Stone defeated the higher-ranked Anderson 4-6 to gain the hot seat and wait on Ms. Norris.
On the loss side, Norris picked up Matt Collins, who'd defeated Brittany Burnett 7-2 and Matt Hall 7-1 to reach her. Courtwright drew Luis Tovar, who'd eliminated Tanya Parsley 5-1, and Tony DeGuzman 5-2.
It was Norris and Courtwright who advanced to the quarterfinals; Norris with a 5-4 victory over Collins, as Courtwright was busy ending Tovar's day 4-2. Norris downed Courtwright in that quarterfinal match 5-2 and went on to defeat Anderson 5-7 in the semifinals.
She defeated Stone 5-2 in the opening set of the true double elimination final. The two battled to double hill in the second set, before Stone prevailed to earn his first GSBT title.

Miller stops loss-side run by US Marine to go undefeated and win his first GSBT stop

Shannon Daulton, Bo Miller, Josh Heeter and Shore Thing Billiards Manager

Bo Miller came into the April 12-13 stop on the Great Southern Billiard Tour playing at the bottom of the amateur rankings. He had to win only three games per match, while other competitors in the $1,000-added event that drew 44 entrants to Shore Thing Billiards in Myrtle Beach, SC had to win as many as nine games per match. Miller went undefeated through the field, and in the process stopped a strong challenge by a 21-year-old US Marine, Josh Heeter, who won nine on the loss side to face him in the finals.
Miller advanced to a winners' side semifinal against Brad Stone, racing to 5, and defeated him, double hill (3-4), to advance to the hot seat match. He faced Matt Collins, who'd sent Dan Woods to the loss side 6-2. Miller won his requisite three games in the winners' side final, with Collins winning only two of the six he needed.
On the loss side, Heeter, with a bye and four matches behind him, defeated Josh Salins 7-4 and Chandler DeGuzman 7-2, to draw Stone. Woods picked up Ricky Boughman, who'd gotten by Phillip Britt 7-7 (Britt racing to 9), and BJ Hucks 7-5, to reach him. Heeter gave up only a single rack to Stone, and Boughman, only two to Woods, advancing them to the quarterfinals.
Heeter chalked up loss-side win # 8 in a 7-3 win over Bougham, and then picked up a second, single-rack-only victory over Collins in the semifinals. Heeter and Miller fought to double hill (2-6) in the finals, but Miller prevailed to chalk up his first victory on the Great Southern Billiard Tour.
Tour director Shannon Daulton thanked the ownership and staff at Shore Thing Billiards for their continuing hospitality, as well as sponsors Nick Varner Cues & Cases, Delta-13, Ozone Billiards, Tiger Products, Andy Gilbert Custom Cues, Lomax Cues, and Universe Clothing. The GSBT will return to Shore Thing Billiards on the weekend of May 10-11, , scheduled for April 12-13, will be hosted by Shore Thing Billiards in Myrtle Beach, SC.