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Stottlemeyer comes from the loss-side to win 2020 MD State 9-Ball Bar Table Championship

Loye Bolyard, Brett Stottlemeyer and Rick Scarlato Jr. (Erwin Dionisio)

With recognizeable and historically successful names among the 103 who signed on to compete in the 2020 Maryland State Bar Table 9-Ball Championships this past weekend (July 25-26), you’d have expected a few ‘fireworks;’ memorable games, epic matchups, and a nail-biting finish. That happened actually, just not among the names one might have expected.

It was won by one of those recognizeable names – Brett Stottlemyer – who came from the loss side to down Oklahoma’s Joe Tomkowski, a lesser known competitor, whose last known cash prize shooting pool occurred in 2013 at a stop on the Midwest 9-Ball Tour, and only two other times before that, in 2011. It should be noted that while Stottlemyer has been a consistent competitor in the Mid-Atlantic region, he hadn’t chalked up a major victory either, since he won the VA State 10-Ball Championship in 2013. Since that time, Stottlemyer found himself in a situation where, as a grandparent, he had to care for three grandchildren. This had a way of curtailing the kind of road experiences that would normally have kept him competing on, as an example, The Action Pool Tour, or anything really outside of his home area.

“We had to go through parenting again,” he explained of his somewhat prolonged absence. “We’d already raised three and (then), we were raising three more.”

Recently, Stottlemeyer has been competing at regular tournaments, hosted by Brews & Cues on the Boulevard, in Glen Burnie, MD, which hosted this most recent MD State Bar Box 9-Ball Championships.

“In the past month and half,” he said, “I beat Shaun Wilkie in the finals of the 9-Ball tournament (at Brews & Cues) and then, I beat him in 8-Ball, too.”

This edition of the MD State Bar Box 9-Ball Championships drew 103 entrants to Brews & Cues.

Brandon Sluzalis, who won last year’s event, did not compete this year, although four other ‘Brandon’s did (Shuff, Vaughn, Rippeon and Kreider). Shaun Wilkie, who was last year’s runner-up, stepped up to the plate and got the fireworks going by shutting out his first three opponents; Shawn Heller, William Pollock and Stefanie Manning. Johnny Archer shut out two of his first four opponents (Zack Strong and Mark Ford), sandwiching-in two victories in which he gave up only five racks; 2 to Brian Jones and 3 to Clint Clayton.

By the time the winners’ side field had whittled down to eight, some of the other more recognizeable competitors had already been moved to the loss side. Brandon Shuff, for example, along with Matt Krah, Brian Dietzenbach, Paul Oh, Del Sim and a few others. By the time the winners’ side was down to four, the eventual winner, Stottlemyer, had joined them. So had Archer.

Wilkie was still alive and in his winners’ side semifinal, facing Dylan Spohr, who finished in the tie for 13th last year. Mr. Tomkowski, in the meantime, squared off against Tony Long, who’d been responsible for sending Archer to the loss side.

By identical 7-5 scores, Spohr downed Wilkie and Tomkowski defeated Long. By yet another 7-5 score (indicative, in most cases, of a ‘fireworks’ type of match), Tomkowski, competing in only his second (recorded) hot seat match, sent Spohr over and claimed the hot seat.

On the loss side, moving into the money rounds, many of the expected ‘fireworks’ dispensers were still in play. Joining them in the 5th money round (competing for 5th/6th), Long and Wilkie ran into a couple of them; Stottlemyer and Shuff. Stottlemyer, in his first loss-side match, had survived a double hill battle against Eric Heiland and then eliminated Paul Oh by shutting him out, which led to him drawing Long. Shuff, playing in his third loss-side match, had defeated Brandon Rippeon 7-1 and then, 7-5, eliminated Matt Krah, who had just defeated Johnny Archer, also 7-5. Shuff picked up Wilkie.

Shuff and Wilkie got into one of the aforementioned ‘epic battles’ in their mutual desire for advancement to the quarterfinals. Shuff won the double hill battle. Stottlemyer joined him after defeating Long 7-2.

Stottlemyer and Shuff would both end up winning five on the loss side. Stottlemyer’s five would put him into the finals. Shuff’s run would end in the quarterfinals in another ‘epic battle’ waged by opponents very familiar with each other. This, too, went double hill before Stottlemyer advanced to tackle Dylan Spohr in the semifinals.

That semifinal match was not nearly as ‘epic’ as the two that had preceded it. Stottlemyer shut Spohr out for his shot against Tomkowski, waiting for him in the hot seat.

It was a true double elimination final, so Stottlemyer had to defeat Tomkowski twice. It was clear from the outset that while Stottlemyer came to the match with far more experience than Tomkowski, Tomkowski wasn’t going to be lying down anytime soon.

Another epic was in the making. Stottlemyer battled and got out in front by 2 and then won the opening set 7-4. The second set was a highly entertaining mixture of good shooting, timely safeties, and in the end, an epic final shot that gave Stottlemyer the win.

“He broke dry, pushed and I gave it back to him,” said Stottlemyer of that final, double hill rack. “He ended up leaving me the 1-ball and then, when I played the 2-ball, I used the 5-ball, which ended up going further than I expected.”

“Once it was sitting there,” he added, “I got position (and dropped) the 3-ball.”

With the 3-ball gone (and the 4-ball already gone), Stottlemeyer looked along the length of a short rail to see the 5-ball nestled up, fairly tightly, against the 9-ball. With a referee watching to assure that the hit was clean, Stottlemyer caromed the cue ball off of the 5-ball. It shifted right, hit the 9-ball and put it in the hole. Stottlemyer was MD State’s 2020 Bar Table 9-Ball champion.

“It was one of the easiest caroms to play,” he said.

Event directors Loye Bolyard and Rick Scarlato, Jr. thanked the ownership and staff at Brews & Cues for their hospitality, as well as sponsors Lucid BallSports (which introduced its new Predator Arena Lights for the tables), AZBilliards.com, Aramith Balls, Mezz Cues, Simonis Cloth, TAP Chesapeake Bay Region, Turtle Racks, Billiard Sports Network (which live-streamed selected matches throughout the weekend) and Break Out Billiard Apparel.

Brandon Shuff Seals the Deal at Maryland State 9-Ball Championship

Brandon Shuff, Loye Bolyard, Shaun Wilkie, Jake Lawson, Kenny Ruttman and Rick Scarlato

In yet another action-packed weekend of competitive pool, Brandon Shuff emerged as the winner of the Maryland State 9-Ball Championship. The event, which is owned and managed by On The Hill Productions, was held at the Champion Billiards Sports Bar in Frederick, MD during the weekend of May 4th-5th. This has been a successful year so far for Brandon. He recently finished 4th in the Barry Behrman Memorial in April and the VA State 10-Ball in February. In this tournament, he sailed through the field and dropped only one set to Shaun Wilkie, who came back from the B-side to try and claim the title. Brandon held firm and was able to lift the trophy in victory.
 
The 82-player field was customarily strong, loaded with such powerhouses as Shaun Wilkie, Kevin West, Brett Stottlemyer, Chip Klein, Del Sim, David Hennessy, Kenny Rutman, Matt Krah, Steve Fleming, Thomas Zippler and Scott Haas to name a few. The ladies were represented by local favorites Bethany Sykes, Eugenia Gyftopoulos, Gwen Townsend, Lai Li, Stefanie Manning and newcomer to the tournament scene, Jenny Mohammed.
 
Not to be left out, the young guns also made their presence felt. Tournament-regulars Dylan Spohr and Coen Bell were there to stir the pot, but the young man who stood head and shoulders above the rest was Justin Martin from Wilmington, NC. He had a very strong finish of fourth place and impressed everyone with his display of fundamentals, technique, and poise. Don't be surprised if he snaps off one of these big events very soon! 
 
The recent champion of the MD State 9-Ball Bar Table Championship, Brandon Sluzalis was also there, but his efforts to repeat were cut short first by Kenny Rutman, then by the straight-shooting Bobby Pacheco. He had to settle for 9th. place.
 
Congratulations to all who finished in the top 24 places this weekend. 
This event owes its success to the following sponsors:
McDermott Cues
Billiard Sports Network
Lights Out Billiard Apparel
Phillippi Custom Cues
TAP Pool League – Chesapeake Region
 
Many thanks to the owner Gary Allen & staff at Champion Billiards for hosting another successful event. The high-quality free stream was provided by Jake Lawson and Josh Setterfield of Billiard Sports Network. Tour directors Rick Scarlato Jr. and Loye Bolyard continue to provide great tournaments with the utmost professionalism and quality.

Brandon Sluzalis sweeps the field at the first Maryland State Bar Table 9-Ball Championship

It was another successful weekend of pool for “On The Hill” Productions. Tour owners Rick Scarlato Jr. and Loye Bolyard decided to have the first event of 2019 at Brews & Cues on The Blvd in Glen Burnie, Maryland. Due to minor size constraints the field was decreased from 128 players to 104, but that did not prevent the world-class players from showing up to steal the show.
 
The event consisted of such top-flight players as James Aranas (PHI), Kristina Tkach (RUS), Del Sim (SCO) and local champions Shaun Wilkie and Brett Stottlemyer to name a few. Little did they know that Brandon Sluzalis, a top-regional player from Bethlehem, PA would be waiting for them. There was also a generous helping of young talent, which is always encouraging for the future of the game. Hailing from Lancaster, PA and Hazleton PA respectively, seventeen-year-old Thomas Haas has been lighting up the tables in almost every event. Eighteen-year-old Dylan Spohr has proven to be a constant threat. Coen Bell from Cambridge, MD is only fourteen, but his game has been improving steadily for the past two years. Not to be outdone, Skylar Hess has been making her opponents nervous at the ripe old age of ten!
 
As with any major event, there was no shortage of surprises. Russian sensation Kristina Tkach finished out of the top 24 places. Delaware champion Kevin West only won his first match before falling first to Shaun Wilkie and then Derick Daya. The usually reliable Tim Tanana went 0-2, which was very unusual for him, and tour director Rick Scarlato Jr. had a surprising finish out of the money. Other top players who did not cash were Rick Molineiro, Scott Haas, John Moody Sr. and Matt Krah. Young Travis Manning, for whom pool is his second passion (bowling is his first) surprised everyone by finishing in the top 24! Travis held his composure and shot well all weekend. Despite having to face the world-class talent of James Aranas (PHI) in the first round (on the Stream Table no less!), Travis bore down and mowed through the field to get in the money.
 
The story of the day, however, belonged to Brandon Sluzalis. A well-known tour grinder, Brandon smoothly played his way into the Hot Seat, defeating Shaun Wilkie, Brett Stottlemyer and James Aranas on the way. The first-round bye had no effect on his demeanor or his momentum, and he calmly dismantled everyone who crossed his path. It was as though he knew the championship was his from the start, and everyone else was simply in his way.
 
Congratulations to all who finished in the top 24 places this weekend. The Maryland State Events have been consistently providing extremely tough competition for modest entry fees with excellent payouts.
 
Many thanks to Anthony Manning and the staff at Brews & Cues for outstanding accommodations, which included the installation of an extra table for the live stream. Thanks as well to the owners of Billiard Sports Network, Jake Lawson and Josh Setterfield for the free high-quality streaming all weekend, with commentary.
 
This event would not have been possible without the work and contributions of the following sponsors:
McDermott Cues
Billiard Sports Network
Lights Out Billiard Apparel
Phillippi Custom Cues
TAP Pool League – Chesapeake Region
 
Tour owners Rick Scarlato Jr. and Loye Bolyard, along with Theresa Scarlato and Beverlee Longstreet-Dillow, worked tirelessly to ensure a smooth, efficient event, with little to no hiccups. The Maryland State Events have cemented their place on the East Coast as one of the premier events to enjoy.

Zippler wins first Action Pool Tour event at season opener; Malm takes Ladies title

Tom Zippler

The Action Pool Tour opened its 2017 season at the Magic 8 Cue Club in Cockeysville, MD on the weekend of Jan. 14-15. It featured the first of a season-long series of ladies tournaments, a new rule governing the calculations for rankings (lowest event score, previously eliminated from calculations, now counted in rankings), and, in the persons of Tom Zippler and Tina Malm, new visitors to the tour's winners' circle. The 40-entrant Open event saw Zippler return from a loss in the hot seat match to defeat its occupant, Brett Stottlemyer, in the finals. In the 7-entrant ladies tournament, Tina Malm did the same thing, downing Lai Li in the finals.
 
Zippler's trip to the finals went through Steve Fleming, Phillip LaPorta, Justin Powers and the eventual winner of the Ladies tournament, Tina Malm, before coming up against Andy Lincoln in a winners' side semifinal. Stottlemyer defeated Mike Slagle, and Bill Woods before almost having his winners' side run derailed by Dave Hunt in a double hill fight. Stottlemyer moved on, though, to defeat Doug Hornsby, before meeting up with Clint Clayton in the other winners' side semifinal.
 
A 7-4 victory by Zippler over Lincoln and a 7-3 win by Stottlemyer over Clayton set the two up for their first of two in the hot seat match. It came within a game of double hill, with Stottlemyer winning 7-5 to claim the hot seat.
 
On the loss side, Clayton picked up Malm, who, following her defeat at the hands of Zippler, had defeated Garrett Waechter 6-3 and Will Moon 6-4. Lincoln drew Trevor Dentz, who'd squeaked by Doug Hornsby 6-5, and defeated Tom Helmstetter 6-2. Lincoln and Malm advanced to the quarterfinals; Lincoln 6-4 over Dentz and Malm, with a shutout over Clayton. 
 
There were a couple of "ifs" on the line in the quarterfinal match that followed. If Malm had defeated Lincoln, she'd have guaranteed herself more prize money in the Open match than she eventually earned winning the Ladies tournament. In addition, if Malm had gone on to face Zippler in a re-match, she might have fared better than Lincoln did in his re-match against Zippler. Lincoln and Malm went double hill in that quarterfinal match before Lincoln advanced. Lincoln was then shut out by Zippler in the semifinal.
 
One can only surmise that the APT veteran Stottlemyer lost a degree of momentum in waiting for the potential newcomer to the winners' circle (Zippler's) return. In any case, Zippler took the final match 9-5 over Stottlemyer to claim the APT season opener title.
 
Tina Malm claimed the Ladies title with a 4-1 record. She downed Judie Wilson 6-2, and just did get by Kia Sidbury, double hill, in a winners' side semifinal, before being defeated by Lai Li, double hill, in the hot seat match. Li had won her two opening matches 6-2, against Jenny Acot and Terri Stovall (in the other winners' side semifinal), before winning the double hill hot seat match against Malm. 
 
On the loss side, Nicole Fleming, after losing her opening match to Sidbury, got by Judie Wilson, and Terri Stovall, to earn herself a re-match against Sidbury in the quarterfinals. Fleming successfully wreaked her vengeance on Sidbury 6-1 to face Malm in the semifinals. Malm downed her 6-3 to get her second shot at Li in the hot seat. Again, one can only surmise that the downtime between hot seat match and finals had its effect on Li. The result was an 8-2 victory by Malm, which earned her the first ladies title of the APT season.

Parks and Parker Win U.S. Amateur Championship Titles

Brian Parks

Champs Advance to Pro Event in 2017

It’s about leaving a legacy. Sure, there’s perks too.  Like a getaway to Tampa, one of the premier vacation destinations in the world.  An all-expenses paid trip to a pro event next year courtesy of the APA.  Oh, and let’s not forget the championship trophy – a combination of marble and bronze that more closely resembles a piece of fine art than something awarded at a tournament.

But winning the U.S. Amateur Championship is all about the title.  It’s about leaving one’s mark on the sport of pool.  It’s about having your name and your accomplishment forever etched in history.  That’s what drove more than 2,000 of North America’s top amateur players to try and qualify.  That’s what brought 128 men and 33 women to Stroker’s in Palm Harbor, Fla., in early November to compete in this year’s U.S. Amateur Championship.
 
Parks Wins Record 4th Title
 
Brian Parks of Bakersfield, Calif., has already left his legacy on the sport.  The three-time U.S. Amateur Champ had little to prove. He’d been there and done that.  
 
That was before a then 68-year-old fellow Californian named Henry Brodt decided to come out of retirement to win his third U.S. Amateur Championship title in 2015 – tying Parks record.  In his post-victory celebration, Brodt playfully “called out” Parks – who’d chosen not to compete last year.  Aware of Brodt’s good-natured ribbing, Parks returned this year, determined not to share his unmatched excellence.  Early on, he showed no rust from his one year hiatus.  He was vintage Parks, going undefeated through the first two days of competition and knocking off some of the top players in the field including Troy Jones, Marvin Guss and Brett Stottlemyer.
 
Then came an unexpected setback – a loss to the up-and-coming James Adams of Brooksville, Fla., a potential heir apparent to the U.S. Amateur Championship throne.  Parks would have to fight his way back through the one-loss bracket, and avenge his earlier round loss to Adams, to advance to the final round.
 
In the final round, Parks would face young Daniel Gambill of Hickory, N.C.  Gambill, another U.S. Amateur Championship regular who’s poised to be part of the event’s next generation of perennial stars.  Gambill had gone undefeated throughout the event and was playing arguably the best pool of his career.
 
The finale began in the 8-Ball set at Parks choosing.  Gambill opened with two quick wins.  Parks regrouped for two wins of his own.  They’d go on to split the next four games and were dead-locked at 4-4 heading into the 9-Ball set.  That’s where Parks shined.  He won seven straight games, giving Gambill few chances at the table.  What moments before looked like it might be a hill-hill nail-biter, was suddenly over faster than anyone expected.  Parks had won 11-4, and secured his fourth U.S. Amateur Championship title.
 
A gracious Gambill was the first to congratulate him, understanding all too well who’d defeated him, and knowing that his time would eventually come.
 
Parks will compete in the 2017 U.S. Open, and his name will once again be added to the Larry Hubbart Trophy of Champions.  Gambill finished as Runner-up, while Adams finished in 3rd Place – it was both players top finish in U.S. Amateur Championship competition.
 
Fernando Vaca of Gaithersburg, Va., finished in 4th Place.  Brett Stottlemyer of Pasadena, Md., and David Singleton of Port Orange, Fla., tied for 5th Place. 
 
[photo id=45563|align=right]Parker Takes Women’s Field By Storm
 
Generally it takes newcomers a few years of U.S. Amateur Championship competition to be in a position to take home the title.  Maybe it’s the combination 8-Ball and 9-Ball format.  Maybe it’s the level of competition.  Whatever it is, it certainly wasn’t the case for Robin Parker of Birmingham, Ala.  After failing to qualify in a Preliminary Round five years ago, Parker not only qualified, she steamrolled this year’s Women’s U.S. Amateur Championship field in just her first appearance.  Parker went undefeated, taking out seasoned veterans like Dee Dee Copeland and former champion Betty Lea.
 
Her most difficult test would come from Jackie Blomlie of Ocala, Fla. Parker sent Blomlie to the one-loss bracket early on the final day of competition, but Blomlie would put herself in position to avenge the loss by ousting Lea for a spot in the final round.
 
In the finals, Blomlie got on the board first with a win in the 8-Ball set, and led 3-1 after four games.  An unfazed Parker would take the next two games, and evened the match 3-3 as the ladies moved into the 9-Ball set.  Blomlie again got on the board first in the 9-Ball set.  Just when it looked as though she might open up the match, Parker rose to the occasion, and reeled off six straight wins for a dominating 9-4 win.
 
The victory secures Parker a spot in a 2017 WPBA pro event, while Blomlie had to settle for a strong Runner-up finish.  Former champion Betty Lea (’06) finished in 3rd Place in her first U.S. Amateur Championship competition in several years.
 
Match coverage, including the finals, of this year’s U.S. Amateur Championship and Women’s U.S. Amateur Championship, can be found on the APA YouTube channel at youtube.com/apaleagues.
 
The entry window for the 2017 U.S. Amateur Championship will open April 1 with the Preliminary Rounds scheduled across North America in mid-September.
 
The 2016 U.S. Amateur Championship was conducted by the APA, and is the only tournament produced by the APA open to both members and non-members.  Preliminary qualifying rounds were held throughout the country in mid-September.
 
As Champions, both Parks and Parker will return next year to defend their coveted titles.
 
The U.S. Amateur Championship is a double elimination tournament that offers the nation’s top amateur players the opportunity to showcase their skills through a combination of 8-Ball and 9-Ball matches, in the only APA event that does not use The Equalizer® handicap system.
 
The APA, based in Lake Saint Louis, Mo., sanctions the world’s largest amateur pool league, with leagues throughout the United States, Canada and Japan.  More than 250,000 members compete in weekly 8-Ball and 9-Ball League play.  The APA is generally recognized as the Governing Body of Amateur Pool, having established the official rules, championships, formats and handicap systems for the sport of amateur billiards.
 
The APA produces three major tournaments each year—the APA World Pool Championships, the APA Poolplayer Championships and the U.S. Amateur Championship—that, together, pay out more than $2 Million in cash and prizes annually!
 
The APA and its championships are sponsored by Aramith, Action Cues and Pool Dawg.
 
For complete coverage of the U.S. Amateur Championship visit http://www.poolplayers.com/usam/.

Foldes goes undefeated at 10th Annual Bob Stocks Memorial

Vilmos Foldes

On the weekend of October 8-9, Hungarian-born, California resident Vilmos Foldes appeared in his first Action Pool Tour (APT) stop at the First Break Cafe, in Sterling, VA – the 10th Annual Bob Stocks Memorial Tournament. He went undefeated through the field of 58, defeating the tour's (at the time) #2-ranked player, Eric Moore, twice, to claim the event title. Foldes' first victory on the tour doesn't move him among the tour's top-ranked players, because the ranking system is derived from accumulated points. Moore, on the other hand, who has appeared in six of the tour's eight stops to date, earned enough points as this most recent event's runner-up to move past the tour's #1-ranked player, Brandon Shuff, who did not compete.
 
 
It was an impressive performance by Foldes, who arrived to compete in a winners' side semifinal against Brian Deska, having given up only one rack in 29 games played. Foldes shut out his first three opponents, before giving up the single rack to Brian Dietzenbach in a winners' side quarterfinal. Moore, in the meantime, arrived at his winners' side semifinal matchup versus Bruce Choyce, having given up 10 racks in 38 games (4, 3, 2 and 1, though not in that order).
 
 
Deska, who, back in March, won nine on the loss side to meet and defeat Shuff and claim his first APT title of the year, and then, a month later, won his second APT title, was defeated by Foldes 7-2. Moore, meanwhile, downed Choyce 7-2 to meet Foldes in the hot seat match.  Foldes claimed the hot seat 7-3 over Moore, and waited in the hot seat, with his 89% win total, for Moore to return.
 
 
On the loss side, Deska picked up Bobby Stovall, who'd fallen to Choyce in a winners' side quarterfinal and then defeated Christopher Wilburn 6-2 and Kenny Miller 6-1. Choyce drew Dietzenbach, who, following his defeat at the hands of Foldes, shut out Pat Carosi and downed Brett Stottlemyer 6-1.
 
 
Almost predictably, two double hill battles ensued, for the right to advance to the quarterfinals. The winners' side semifinalists (Deska and Choyce) were eliminated by the winners' side quarterfinalists, Stovall and Dietzenbach. Dietzenbach then stopped Stovall's run with a shutout in the quarterfinals.
 
 
Moore, though, stopped Dietzenbach's four-match, loss-side streak, which had included two shutouts. Moore earned himself a second shot at Foldes with a 6-3 win over Dietzenbach in the semifinals.
 
 
Moore put up a fight in the finals that saw him chalk up as many racks, as all of Foldes' previous opponents' combined. Foldes claimed his first APT title with a 9-6 win.
 
 
With three events to go, including next month's VA State 8-Ball Championships (Nov. 12-13 at Diamond Billiards in Midlothian, VA), and airfare to the US Bar Table Championships in Las Vegas at stake (both the top and second-ranked player receive entry to all three divisions of that event, and hotel accommodations), Moore is currently in the top-ranked driver's seat, with Brandon Shuff right there beside him.   

Karen Corr becomes first woman to win a stop on the Action Pool Tour

Karen Corr

As the Action Pool Tour's seventh stop advanced to its winners' side semifinals, it became possible that not only could a woman emerge as the event champion, there might be two of them in the finals. Only one, Karen Corr, made it, returning from a loss in the hot seat, meeting and defeating Brett Stottlemyer in the finals and becoming the first woman to win a stop on the Action Pool Tour. The event, held on the weekend of September 10-11, drew 66 entrants to Breakers Sky Lounge in Herndon, VA.
 
Corr's seven-match march to the winners' circle was no walk in the park. Though she'd win her first three by an aggregate score of 21-6, defeating Bryan Proctor (3), Jimmy Coleman (2) and Steve Fleming (1), she won her next two 14-9 against Alan Duty (4) and in a winners' side semifinal, Shaun Wilkie (5), both among the tour's top 10 players. In comparison, Stottlemyer's six-match path to the hot seat began with a double hill scare versus Greg Sabins. Things smoothed out a bit, as Stottlemyer went on to defeat Bruce Gardner (3), Eric Moore (2), Amit Kumar (4), and in the other winners' side semifinal, the other woman in the hunt for a first APT championship, Tina Malm (3). As the hot seat match between Stottlemyer and Corr got underway, it was "Advantage Miss Corr" – 35-15 over Stottlemyer 35-18. That changed to "Advantage Mr. Stottlemyer" as he took the hot seat match 7-5 and waited on Corr's return.
 
On the loss side, Malm had the misfortune of opening her bid to become part of an all-woman final against Corr by running into the Action Pool Tour's #1-ranked player, Brandon Shuff, looking for his fourth trip to an APT final and second win of the season. Shuff had been defeated by Eric Moore (the #3-ranked player on the tour) 7-4 in his opening round, and was in the midst of an eight-match, loss-side winning streak that would take him as far as the quarterfinals. Two of the eight went double hill. Wins #5 and #6 came at the expense of Alan Duty and a successful re-match against Moore, both 6-4 wins. Wilkie, in the meantime, the tour's #2-ranked player, picked up Kenny Miller (who'd end up at the conclusion of this stop as the #4-ranked player on the tour). Miller had been sent to the loss side by Malm in a winners' side quarterfinal, and defeated Will Moon and Danny Mastermaker, both 6-4.
 
Shuff chalked up his last win over Malm 6-2, as Wilkie, by the same score, was eliminated by Miller. Miller advanced one more step, defeating Shuff in the quarterfinals 6-4, before running into the apparently determined Corr in the semifinals. She earned her second shot against Stottlemyer, waiting for her in the hot seat, with a 6-3 win over Miller in those semifinals.
 
Combined, Corr and Stottlemyer had been a part of the seven-stop, APT season only three times. Corr was making her first appearance, while Stottlemyer was making his second (he placed fourth in the opening stop). Corr became the first victorious female on the APT tour with a commanding 9-4 win over Stottlemyer in the finals.

The 2015 Action Pool Tour Champion – Brandon Shuff – wins 2016 season opener

Things were running fairly smoothly for the 2015 Action Pool Tour Champion, Brandon Shuff, during the tour's 2016 season opener on the weekend of January 16-17. Until, that is, Shuff ran into Danny Mastermaker in a winners' side semifinal. Shuff had to shuffle on over to the loss side, where he chalked up three wins (including a rematch versus Mastermaker), and came back to defeat hot seat occupant, Rafael Reyes in the finals. The event drew 54 entrants to Magic 8 Cue Club in Cockeysville, MD.
 
Over his first four games, each of Shuff's opponents added two racks to the number scored against him in the previous round. An opening round shutout over Alan Duty was followed by a 7-2 win over Chris Pyle, which was followed by a 7-4 win over Kenny Miller, which was followed by a double hill, 7-6 win over Brett Stottlemyer. This set him up in a winners' side semifinal against Mastermaker, as Reyes and Shaun Wilkie squared off in the other one.
 
Mastermaker sent Shuff to the loss side 7-2, while Reyes (who, by the way, started out with a double hill win and followed it with a shutout and two 7-4 wins) defeated Wilkie 7-3. Reyes claimed the hot seat in one of those 'almost double hill,' 7-5 battles and waited on the return of Shuff.
 
On the loss side, Shuff picked up Steve Fleming, who'd been sent to the loss side by Wilkie and after shutting out Will Moon, had defeated Randy Thomas 7-2. Wilkie, in the meantime, drew Stottlemyer, who, following his defeat at the hands of Shuff, had defeated Jimmy Varias and Trevor Dentz, both 6-2.
 
Stottlemyer and Shuff advanced to a somewhat familiar quarterfinal matchup, once Stottlemyer had eliminated Wilkie 6-2, and Shuff had downed Fleming 6-4. Shuff then took care of business with Stottlemyer, retiring him 6-4 in the quarterfinals, and turning for a re-match against Mastermaker. 
 
Shuff gave up only a single rack to Mastermaker in the semifinals, and turned to face Reyes in the hot seat. A double hill battle ensued, eventually won by Shuff 9-8 to claim the APT's season opener; step one in a quest to repeat as tour champion.

Abraham knocks Wilkie out of the hot seat at Great Slates Bar Table 9-Ball Championships

Eddie Abraham came back from a defeat in the hot seat match to take down Shaun Wilkie in the finals of the Great Slates Bar Table 9-Ball Championships, held on the weekend of December 5-6. The $500-added event drew 85 entrants to Great Slates in Cambridge, MD.
 
Abraham built up a head of steam in this tournament that saw him win his opening matches by a rack or two, while later matches were chalked up, against arguably tougher opponents, with three or four rack differentials. He won his first three matches by an aggregate score of 21-13. He won his next two, against Brett Stottlemyer and Dan Madden, by an aggregate score of 14-5.
 
Abraham's victory over Madden was in a winners' side semifinal, which put him into the hot seat match against Shaun Wilkie. Wilkie was steady through his opening three (21-8), but then had to navigate his way through two straight double hill matches, first, against Matt Krah, and then, in a winners' side semifinal, against Kenny Rutman. Wilkie was three winning percentage points behind Abraham when he faced him in the hot seat match. Wilkie won it 7-5, although it proved to be his last match win of the weekend.
 
Ruttman and Madden moved over to the loss side to face two of the mid-Atlantic region's toughest competitors; Brett Stottlemyer and former Mosconi Cup team member, Brandon Shuff. Stottlemyer had defeated Adam Kielar 7-3 and R.J. Carmona 7-4 to draw Rutman. Shuff had gotten by FrEd Scott 7-5 and Matt Krah 7-1 to pick up Madden. 
 
Stottlemyer advanced to the quarterfinals 7-4 over Carmona. Shuff joined him with a 7-1 victory over Krah. Shuff ended up in fourth place on the heels of Stottlemyer's 7-5 victory in those quarterfinals. Abraham downed Stottlemyer by the same score in the semifinals. 
 
Abraham moved back for a second shot at Wilkie in the hot seat. Abraham prevailed in the single set, race-to-9 final match to secure the event title.

US Open Day Two: Woodward Tames the Lion

Skyler Woodward

With a tournament as full of top players as the 39th Simonis/Aramith US Open 9-Ball Championship, players are going to have to navigate a veritable minefield of talent to advance. Some of those draws are, of course, tougher than others. With the first round pairing of US Open rookie Skyler Woodward and Filipino veteran "The Lion" Alex Pagulayan, most fans in attendance chalked it up as just a tough draw for the youngster. They were right about it being a tough draw, they just had the wrong victim in mind.

 
Woodward and Pagulayan kept the match close early as they traded leads at 3-2 and 4-3, then Woodward caught a gear. From 4-3 down, Woodward won seven games to stun the veteran and take the hill at 10-4. Pagulayan, never one to stress over a match situation, came back and won four straight to make it a match at 10-8 before the Filipino legend missed a 4-ball and Woodward smoothly ran out the rack for the 11-8 upset of the day.
 
"I never really felt nervous" said Woodward after the match. "I just tried to play the best pool I could play". For those critics who count out Woodward in big events like this because of his perceived bar table specialization, Woodward had some bad news for you. "I grew up on a barbox and that is really all we had, but we just got a 9 foot Diamond and I have been playing on it all that I can". 
 
Tuesday morning play saw the beginnings of player eliminations, and a number of top favorites were in danger of suffering a much shorter event than they had planned. Niels Feijen began the day with a powerful match against Chris Pyle where he made an 11-­0 statement to forget his loss yesterday to Maz Eberle.
 
Raj Hundal sent Chuck Ralston home 11-­7 and Adam Smith did the same to Israel Rota with an identical score. Mike Delawder took out Paul Potier 11­-8 and Imaran Majid ended the run of the only female in the field, Dana Aft, 11-­5. Tony Drago gave a speed shooting exhibition as he defeated Chris Cantrall 11-­0 in only 25 minutes!
 
John Schmidt played very well today and took out local favorite Eric Moore 11­-6.
 
Mosconi Cup hopeful Brandon Shuff, another victim of a very tough draw, suffered his second loss of the event to Rodney Morris 11-5 and will be a spectator for the rest of the week here.
 
Matt Krah won an 11-9 battle with Brett Stottlemyer, while another top youngster Danny Olson sent east coast legend Frankie Hernandez home with a "2 and out" scoreline. 
 
Follow all of the action all week with our online brackets and real time scoring. Select matches are available online as part of Accu-Stats' Pay Per Video video coverage at www.accu-stats.com