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Teenager Hunter White double dips Leonard to win stop on Q City 9-Ball Tour

While early development of natural skills is no guarantee of future success, it certainly doesn't hurt. Sixteen-year-old Hunter White is making a bit of a name for himself on the Q City 9-Ball Tour, where on the weekend of May 21-22, he came back from a loss in the hot seat battle to double dip, Zach Leonard, who'd sent him to the semifinals. Leonard, a two-time former North Carolina Junior 9-Ball Champion (2012-2013) was the winner of the tour's March 5-6 stop in Statesville, NC. This most recent 8-Ball event, a qualifier for the North Carolina 8-Ball Championship in November, drew 43 entrants to the Gate City Billiards Club in Greensboro, NC.
They met first in the hot seat match. Leonard had sent Dalton Messer to the loss side 7-3, as White was busy sending William Smith over 8-2. Leonard claimed the hot seat 7-2 over White and waited on his return.
On the loss side, Messer picked up Blade Best, who'd eliminated William Cloud 5-7 (Cloud racing to 9) and Morgan Sutherland 5-3. Smith drew Bryan Plummer, who'd defeated Dale Lloyd 7-4 and Ryan Hollinsworth 7-5. Best and Plummer handed Messer and Smith their second straight losses; Best 5-1 over Messer and Plummer by forfeit over Smith.
Best downed Plummer in the quarterfinals 5-4 (Plummer racing to 7), before being eliminated by White in the semifinals 8-3.
Leonard took his best shot in the opening set of the true double elimination final, battling to White to double hill, before White prevailed to force the second set. White won that second set to claim the event title.
Tour Director Herman Parker thanked the ownership and staff at the Gate City Billiard Club, as well as sponsors Viking Cues, and Delta-13 Racks. The next stop on the Q City 9-Ball Tour, scheduled for the weekend of May 28-29, will be hosted by Friendly Cues, in Lynchburg, VA.

Fitch and Plummer split top prizes on Q City 9-Ball Tour

Opting out of a finals match for less than obvious reasons (illness, family emergency, work responsibilities, the odd hurricane or two) is generally frowned upon. It's not something that tour directors like to see happen because it has a way of reflecting poorly on the tour. By the same token, most tour directors who've been on their feet running an event all weekend, have a tendency to sympathize with players who, at 2 a.m., just want to call it a day. 
Shannon Fitch and Bryan Plummer, playing on the Q City 9-Ball Tour on Saturday, May 14,  elected to exercise this option, when, as the bell tolled 2, they were to have played a final match. Fitch, as the undefeated occupant of the hot seat, was declared the official winner of the event that had drawn 33 entrants to Buck's Billiards in Raleigh, NC.
It's hard to know who was most affected by the decision; the undefeated opponent in the hot seat (Fitch), or, in this particular case, the opponent who'd won seven on the loss side for a chance at winning the tournament (Plummer)?
With Plummer already at work on the loss side, Fitch advanced to a winners' side semifinal versus Frank Owens. Steve Page and Junior Avery squared off in the other one. Fitch downed Owens 11-2, and in the hot seat match, faced Page, who'd sent Avery over 10-3. Fitch claimed the hot seat over Page 11-7 and for all intents and purposes, his night was over.
On the loss side, Owens picked up JT Ringgold, who'd eliminated Austin Coble and Andy Bowden, both 9-3. It was Avery who drew Plummer, four matches into his seven-match, loss-side winning streak that had most recently included a double hill victory over Richard Howerton, and a 6-4 win over George Crawford.
Plummer moved into the quarterfinals on the heels of a 6-2 win over Avery. Owens joined him by defeating Ringgold 5-7 (Ringgold racing to 9). Plummer took the quarterfinal match over Owens 6-2, and earned himself a shot at the title with a 6-4 victory over Page in the semifinals. 
Plummer and Fitch opted out of the final. Fitch was declared the official title winner.
The next stop on the Q City 9-Ball Tour, scheduled for May 21-22, at the Gate City Billiards Club in Greensboro, NC, will be an 8-ball event that will serve as a qualifier for the North Carolina 8-Ball State Championships.