Archive Page

Bruner still on top of Action Pool Tour standings, claims VA State 8-Ball Championships

(l to r): Chris Bruner & RJ Carmona

Liz Taylor goes undefeated through Ladies field
 
Chris Bruner came into the October 12-13 VA State 8-Ball Championships as the Action Pool Tour’s top player. He went undefeated through a field of 37 at Q Master Billiards in Virginia Beach, VA to claim the event title and maintain his position as #1 on the tour’s player standings list. Eight of the players on the tour’s Top Ten list competed in this year’s event, but so did, among others, Shaun Wilkie (#14) and last year’s runner-up, Mike Davis (#30). Defending champion, Warren Kiamco, did not compete this year. Bruner sent #2, Steve Fleming, to the loss side, and faced #3, RJ Carmona, twice to claim the title.
 
The Ladies event drew a short field of 13 and was won by Liz Taylor, who, along with Jacki Duggan, who finished in 4th place, are the only women among the tour’s Top 20 in player standings. Like Bruner, Taylor went undefeated through the field and had to face the same opponent (Cheryl Pritchard) in both the hot seat and finals.
 
Bruner’s seven-match march to the finish line went through Jose Vega-Hernandez, Travis Southard, Jamie Bess and Fleming to arrive at a winners’ side semifinal match against Eric Moore, who would normally be among the tour’s top players, but was making here only his second appearance on the 2019 tour. Bruner arrived at the winners’ side semifinal, having given up only five total racks (two to Southard and three to Fleming).
 
Carmona got by Kenny Miller (#11), Jason Trigo (#17) and survived a double hill bout versus JT Ringgold (#21) to arrive at his winners’ side semifinal match against Reymart Lim (#5). Three of the four competitors in the winners’ side semifinals had won previous stops on the 2019 tour; Bruner and Lim with two each and Carmona with one.
 
Moore chalked up more racks against Bruner than all of his previous opponents combined. They fought to double hill before Bruner prevailed and advanced to the hot seat match. He was joined by Carmona, who’d sent Lim west 7-3. In their first of two, Bruner claimed the hot seat 7-4 over Carmona.
 
On the loss side, Lim picked up Scott Haas, who’d been defeated by Eric Moore 7-5 in a winners’ side quarterfinal match and gone on to defeat Shaun Wilkie 6-4 and Steve Fleming 6-2. Moore drew Ringgold, who, following his double hill loss to Bruner in a winners’ side quarterfinal, had defeated Tony Montalvo 6-2 and Kenny Miller 6-1.
 
Ringgold downed Moore 6-3 and in the quarterfinals, faced Lim, who’d defeated Haas 6-2. Lim took the quarterfinal match 6-3 over Ringgold.
 
In the semifinals that followed, Carmona gave up only a single rack to Lim and earned himself a second shot against Bruner. In their second meeting, the Bruner and Carmona battled to double hill before Bruner prevailed to deny Carmona his second 2019 tour victory and chalk up his own third win.
 
Taylor downs Pritchard twice to capture Ladies 8-Ball Title
 
Last year’s Ladies’ winner – Bethany Sykes – was ‘in the house’ for this event, though she was sent to the loss side 6-4 in the second round by the eventual winner, Liz Taylor. Sykes then won four on the loss side, before falling to the event’s runner-up, Cheryl Pritchard, in the semifinals.
 
It took Liz Taylor five matches to claim the title. She got by Maria Beckner 6-1 before sending the event’s defending champion, Bethany Sykes to the loss side 6-4. This set Taylor up in a winners’ side semifinal versus Kim Whitman. Awarded a preliminary round bye, Pritchard defeated Kelly Cox 6-3 to arrive at a winners’ side semifinal match against Lisa Uilani Vita.
 
Taylor and Whitman fought to double hill before Taylor prevailed 6-5 and sent Whitman west. Pritchard gave up only a single rack to Vita and joined Taylor in what would be their first of two, battling for the hot seat. Taylor took that first of two 6-3 and waited in the hot seat for Pritchard’s return.
 
On the loss side, Whitman drew Jacki Duggan, who’d lost an earlier battle to Vita and on the loss side, had eliminated Soo Emmett 5-1 and Maria Beckner 5-3. Vita picked up Sykes, who, following her defeat at the hands of Taylor, had defeated Kelly Wyatt 5-3 and Kim McKenna 5-1.
 
Duggan and Sykes advanced to the quarterfinals with 5-3 victories over Whitman and Vita. Sykes followed that with another 5-3 victory, over Duggan, in the quarterfinals.
 
Pritchard ended Sykes’ bid for a second year in the 8-Ball Championship finals with a 5-2 win in the semifinals. Taylor then ended Pritchard’s bid for the event title by shutting her out in the finals.
 
A Second Chance tournament drew 12 entrants and saw Steve Fleming come from the loss side to down hot seat occupant Justin Clark 6-1 in the finals. James Blackburn finished third, with Jimmy Bird in fourth place.
 
Tour directors Kim Wylie and Tiger Baker thanked the ownership and staff at Q Master Billiards, as well as sponsors as well as sponsors Predator Cues, Viking Cues, Simonis Cloth, Aramith Balls, Brown’s Mechanical LLC, Kamui, Diamond Billiard Products, Ozone Billiards, CSI, Grant Wylie Photography and George Hammerbacher, Advanced Pool Instructor. The next stop on the Action Pool Tour, scheduled for the weekend of November 16-17, will be hosted by Diamond Billiards in Midlothian, VA.

Carmona comes back from semifinals to win 7th Annual VA State 10-Ball Championships

(l to r): TD Tiger Baker, Scott Haas & RJ Carmona

Atwell comes back from semifinals to claim her 5th VA State 10-Ball title
 
In the seven-year history of the Virginia State 10-Ball Championships, there have been seven different winners in the event’s Open Division. The most recent winner at the 7th Annual event was RJ Carmona. In that same time frame, there have only been three women who have claimed the title – Tracie Majors (2014), Meredith Lynch (2017) and Janet Atwell, who won the inaugural event in 2013, and claimed the title in successive years, twice; 2015, 2016, 2018, and this past weekend, February 16-17, 2019. Both competitors at this year’s championships, held under the auspices of the Action Pool Tour and hosted by Diamond Billiards in Midlothian, VA, made it to their respective hot seat matches, and lost. They both came back to meet and defeat their hot seat opponent and claim the event title.
 
The Open division of the annual event drew 48 entrants, and only one former champion (Eric Moore, 2016). The Women’s Championship drew 15 entrants, including four-time and defending champion, Atwell. The Open event drew 9 of the top 10 finishers from the APT season opener in January, including that event’s winner (Reymart Lim).
 
Carmona opened his bid for the 2019 title with a shutout over Christopher Wilburn and then, battled to double hill against Del Sim before advancing. He downed Reymart Lim 8-6 and met up with Scott Roberts in a winners’ side semifinal. Carmona’s hot seat and finals opponent, Scott Haas, got by Danny Mastermaker, double hill, in the opening round and went on to defeat Shane Buchanan 8-5, before getting locked up in a second double hill battle against David Hairfield. Haas won that one to advance to a winners’ side semifinal against Brian Bryant.
 
Haas got into the hot seat match with an 8-4 win over Bryant. Carmona joined him after sending Roberts to the loss side 8-2. Haas claimed the hot seat 8-5 over Carmona and waited on his return.
 
On the loss side, Bryant picked up APT veteran/pro player Brandon Shuff, who’d lost a second- round match to Reymart Lim (double hill) and was in the midst of a seven-match, loss-side winning streak that would take him as far as the quarterfinals. He’d most recently eliminated Shorty Davis 7-3 and winner of the APT season opener, Reymart Lim 7-2. Scott Roberts drew Chris Bruner, who’d lost his second-round match to John Newton, and like Shuff, was on an extended loss-side streak (eight matches) that would take him to the seminfinals. He’d most recently defeated David Hairfield 7-5 and Danny Mastermaker 7-4.
 
Shuff and Bruner advanced to the quarterfinals with seven loss-side wins each, once Shuff had eliminated Bryant 7-5 and Bruner had defeated Roberts 7-3. Bruner broke the loss-side match tie with a 7-5 win over Shuff and with some momentum on his side, battled to double hill against Carmona in the semifinals. Carmona, though, finished it for a second shot at Haas in the hot seat.
 
Whatever happened in the Carmona/Haas finals, Reymart Lim was going to retain his top spot on the tour’s (two event) points-leader board, and RJ Carmona would hold on to his #2 spot. Haas, competing in his first 2019 APT stop, would enter the points-leader board at either #18, if he won, or #20, if he lost. Carmona completed his 2019 VA State 10-Ball Championship run with a 10-8 victory over Haas.
 
Atwell goes 3-1 to claim her fifth VA State 10-Ball Ladies title
 
It’s never easy, but short fields make for short runs to event titles. Janet Atwell played four matches and won three of them to claim her fifth VA State 10-Ball title. It was her first appearance on the APT in 2019 and her victory allowed her to enter the tour’s points-leader board at #83 (points are awarded based on a player’s finish and a formula related to the total number of entrants).
 
Atwell was awarded an opening round bye and then defeated Buffy Jolie 7-4 to arrive at a winners’ side semifinal against Marianne Merrill. Liz Taylor, in the meantime, got by Cheryl Pritchard 7-2 and Tina Castillo 7-4 to arrive at her winners’ side semifinal match against Linda Shea (tour director of the J. Pechauer Northeast Women’s Tour).
 
Atwell and Taylor advanced to the hot seat match with identical 7-4 victories over Merrill and Shea. Taylor claimed the hot seat in a double hill win.
 
On the loss side, Shea picked up Lisa Cossette, who’d defeated Kim McKenna and Nicole King, both 6-4, to reach her. Merrill drew Cheryl Sporleder, who’d defeated Dorothy Strater 6-1 and Bethany Sykes 6-4. Shea and Sporleder advanced to the quarterfinals, having given up only three racks between them in 15 games; Shea gave up two to Cossette and Sporleder gave up one to Merrill.
 
Shea gave up none at all to Sporleder in those quarterfinals, only to get locked up in what was most likely a predictable double hill fight between her and Atwell in the semifinals. Atwell prevailed and then in the finals rematch, downed Taylor 8-2 to claim the VA State 10-Ball Ladies title.
 
A Second Chance tournament drew 18 entrants. Greg Sabins and Robert Farmer worked their way through the field and battled in both the hot seat and finals. Farmer claimed the hot seat in a double hill fight, but Sabins came back from a shutout over Graham Swinson in the semifinals to shut Farmer out in the finals and claim the Second Chance top prize of $160. Farmer took home $100 as runner-up. Swinson finished third ($75), Cheryl Sporleder finished in fourth place ($50). Jamie Bess and Andrew Stephan each took home $30 for the 5th place tie.
 
Tour directors Kris Wylie and Tiger Baker thanked the ownership and staff at Diamond Billiards, as well as sponsors Diamond Billiard Products, Viking Cues, Predator, Tiger, Kamui Tips, Ozone Billiards, Simonis Cloth, and George Hammerbacher Advanced Pool Instructor. The next stop on the 2019 Action Pool Tour, scheduled for March 23-24, will be the East Coast Landscaping Bar Box Bash and will be hosted by Peninsula Billiards in Newport News, VA.

Lim wins seven on the loss side to meet, defeat Moore and win Action Pool Tour’s season finale

Malm and Townsend finish 1st & 2nd for third straight time in Women’s event
 
It’s been a good year for Reymart Lim; his best recorded earnings year since he started showing up on the AZBilliards’ database, four years ago. He began the year in February by finishing fourth in the 2017 VA State 10-Ball Championships, behind Dennis Orcollo, Shaun Wilkie and Larry Kressel. Since that time, he’s cashed in nine other events, including victories on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour, and the North Carolina State 10-Ball Open. Only once, all year, has he been outside of an event’s top 10 finishers. The exception was the 42nd Annual US Open 9-Ball Championships, at which he finished in the tie for 25th. There were only seven US players among the Open’s top 25 finishers – Lim, Earl Strickland (also in the tie for 25th), Skyler Woodward, Justin Bergman, Shane Van Boening (all 13th), Billy Thorpe (9th), and Corey Deuel (7th).
 
Good company, to say the least. On the weekend of December 9-10, Lim added a victory on the Action Pool Tour to his resumé and had to win seven on the loss side to do it. He challenged and defeated hot seat occupant, Eric Moore in the finals. It was the APT’s season finale and it drew 35 entrants to Q Master Billiards in Virginia Beach, VA. A concurrently-run Women’s event drew a very short field of six entrants and saw Tina Malm and Gwen Townsend finish 1st & 2nd, respectively, for the third straight time on the tour.
 
In the women’s event, a preliminary, two-match round of play advanced Malm and Meredith Lynch to the winners’ side semifinals. Malm had defeated Soo Emmett 7-2 to draw Townsend. Lynch had sent Donisha Riddick to the loss side 7-1 and picked up Cheryl Pritchard. Malm and Townsend battled to double hill, before Townsend finished it to advance to the hot seat match. She was joined by Pritchard, who’d defeated Lynch 7-5. Townsend successfully fought a second double hill match and sat in the hot seat, awaiting Malm’s return from a three-match trip on the loss side.
 
On the loss side, Malm downed Riddick 7-2, advancing to meet Lynch, who’d defeated Emmett 7-1. Malm and Lynch came within a game of double hill, before Malm advanced to the semifinals 7-5. Malm then downed Pritchard 7-1 for a second shot at Townsend in the hot seat. The race was extended to 9, and Malm needed 16 of the match’s potential 17 games to close it out. She did so, 9-7, to chalk up her third straight victory on the tour (7th overall). It was also Townsend’s third straight finish as runner-up (to go along with a victory in May). The two finished 1st and 2nd in the tour’s rankings for the year.
 
In the Open event (in which Malm participated, as well, going two-and-out), Lim won his opening-round match against Brad Hedges 9-3, and was then sent to the loss side by Tuan Chau 9-6. Chau advanced to meet Eric Moore, who defeated him, double hill, and then advanced to a winners’ side semifinal against Kenny Miller. JT Ringgold, having defeated Mac Harrell, Michael Hughes, and Greg Sabins, advanced to meet Chris Wilburn, who entered (and finished) the tournament as the tour’s #2-ranked player (Shaun Wilkie, who did not compete, remained in the #1 slot).
 
Moore downed Miller 9-6, as Ringgold defeated Wilburn 9-3. Moore and Ringgold locked up in a double hill fight for possession of the hot seat and Moore claimed it.
 
On the loss side, Lim opened his trek back to the finals with victories over Jose Vega-Hernandez (7-1), Joshua Padron (7-2), Greg Sabins (7-2), and Mac Harrell (7-4), to draw Miller. Wilburn picked up the man who’d sent Lim to the loss side, Tuan Chau, who’d recently defeated Michael Hughes 7-2 and Nilbert Lim (no relation, though a friend, to Reymart) 7-4.
 
Chau defeated Wilburn, as Reymart Lim was busy eliminating Harrell, both 7-4. Lim wreaked his vengeance on Chau 7-2 in the quarterfinals, and went on to down Ringgold 7-5 in the semifinals. Lim took command of the finals, and finished it at 11-5 to claim the event title.
 
Tour director Ozzy Reynolds thanked the ownership and staff at Q Master Billiards for their hospitality and sponsorship, along with Cue Sports International, Predator, Ozone Billiards and George Hammerbach. The event, as the season finale, also ended the mega-battle for tour rankings in the male and Open divisions. Leading the way in the Open Division was Shaun Wilkie, who earned airfare, hotel and entry fee to the 2018 US Open 10-Ball Championships. Chris Wilburn, who finished second, earned hotel and entry fee to the same event.
 
Tina Malm, who finished at the top of the women’s rankings, received hotel accommodations and entry fee to the 2018 BCAPL World Championships in July. Unless a female finishes at the top of the tour’s Open rankings, Malm became the APT’s last separate female tour champion, because the APT will no longer offer separate tournaments for a female division of the tour.

Moore chalks up first win on the 2017 Action Pool Tour

Chris Futrell and Eric Moore

Malm wins Ladies event
 
Eric Moore, the 2016 VA State 10-Ball and 8-Ball Champion, finished the 2016 Action Pool Tour (APT) as its top player, capping that feat with an undefeated run at the Tour Championships last December. Until this past weekend (June 17-18), he'd appeared in only two APT stops this year, finishing 7th in March, and, in February, finishing 13th in defense of his VA State 10-Ball title, which was claimed by Dennis Orcollo. Moore also finished fourth in the inaugural Barry Behrman Memorial Spring Open. At this most recent 10-Ball event, the sixth stop on the APT, he went undefeated through a field of 48 at Q Master Billiards in Virginia Beach, VA.
 
In a concurrently-run Ladies event, Tina Malm worked her way, undefeated, through a short field of eight to claim that title. It was Malm's second win on this year's inaugural series of Ladies tournaments, having won the season opener in January. Malm also appeared in the Open event, finishing in the tie for 33rd. In a ranking system that rewards a combination of performance and participation, Judie Wilson, who's appeared in all six of the Ladies tournaments, remains atop the APT's list of female competitors.
 
Moore's run in the Open event began with back-to-back shutouts versus Tina Malm and Toby McGovern, before Chris Futrell, his eventual opponent in the finals, gave him a double-hill run for his money in the third round. Moore survived, advancing to defeat Shaun Wilkie (currently at #3 in the tour rankings) 7-3, which set him up in a winners' side semifinal against Mike Davis. Chuck Sampson, in the meantime, met up with Nilbert Lim in the other winners' side semifinal.
 
Moore survived his second double hill fight, downing Davis, and advanced to the hot seat match versus Sampson, who'd sent Lim to the loss side 7-3. Moore claimed his first hot seat since the Tour Championships and waited there for Futrell to finish his seven-match, loss-side winning streak.
 
Over on the loss side, it was Davis who ran into Futrell, four matches into his loss-side streak, which began with a 6-4 win over the APT's top-ranked player, Christopher Wilburn, and was followed by a shutout over Steve Freeman, and 6-3 wins over TJ Moore and Steve Fleming. Lim picked up Greg Sabins, who'd defeated Mat LeMire 6-2 and (significantly) eliminated Shaun Wilkie 6-3.
 
Futrell defeated Davis 6-3, while Sabins and Lim locked up in a double hill fight that eventually advanced Sabins. Futrell took the quarterfinal match that followed 6-4, and completed his loss-side run by giving up only a single rack to Sampson.
 
The 'finals' re-match was on. The result would do little to change the relative tour rankings of the two opponents (Moore, entering the tournament at #29 and Futrell a few spots above him at #23), but in keeping with their first, double hill meeting, the two played 15 of a possible 17 games. Moore completed his undefeated run 9-6 to claim the title.
 
Malm downs Duggan twice to claim Ladies title
 
Tina Malm's four-match, undefeated run in the Ladies event went through Jacki Duggan twice. They met first in the second round (which was the winners' side semifinal) and fought to double hill, before Malm prevailed. Cheryl Pritchard, in the meantime, having shut out Nicole King, faced Gwen Townsend in the other winners' side semifinal and defeated her 6-4. Malm claimed the hot seat with a 6-2 win over Pritchard and waited on Duggan's return.
 
On the loss side, Duggan picked up Nicole King, who'd just survived a double hill battle against Wilson. Townsend drew Meredith Lynch, who'd defeated Cabatit 6-4 to reach her. By identical 6-4 scores, Duggan and Townsend advanced to the quarterfinals over King and Lynch.
 
Over the next 15 games, encompassing the quarter and semifinals, Duggan gave up only three racks; two to Townsend in the quarterfinals, and one to Pritchard in the semifinals. Malm ended Duggan's short, three-match, loss-side run with an 8-3 win in the finals.
 

Rice Crowned at The Palace

Ashley Rice

The WPBA Tiger SMART Tour staged the 5th Annual WPBA South Carolina State 9-Ball Championship May 20-21, 2017 at Palace Billiards in Greenville, SC.  Many thanks to owner, Mike Sijon, for opening his room to host the event.  Palace Billiards is a new venue for Tiger SMART and it is safe to say, will be a permanent venue for the tour.  Sijon commented, “The girls are terrific; so well dressed and congenial.”
 
Format was two, six person, round robins, race to seven, with the top two finishers of each bracket playing a single elimination semi-final and race to nine final.  Five rounds of group play began and was completed on Saturday.  Bracket one results were: Ashley Rice 4-0; Tiffany Stidham 2-2 with a games won/games lost record of 25-20; Marianne Merrill 2-2/21-18; Cheryl Pritchard 2-2/21-23; and Audra Mozee 0-4.  Bracket two results were: Belinda Calhoun 3-1/24-18; Debbie Teichert 3-1/24-22; Lisa Cossette 2-2/23-21; Betty Lea 2-2/22-21; and Julie Stephens 0-4.
 
On Sunday, the semi-finals were played by Debbie Teichert, who was having a fantastic tournament with her only loss in group play was to Calhoun and who has shown tremendous improvement over the past year and up and coming future star, Ashley Rice.  Rice continued her unbeaten streak for a trip to the finals.  The other semi-final was contested by Tiffany Stidham, back from child birth and Belinda Calhoun. At 5-6 Stidham played a great safety on the seven-ball.  Calhoun kicks in the seven and had a shot on the nine for the win.
 
Rice played solid, was consistent, and took advantage of her opportunities, always a winning formula as evidenced by her 9-3 victory and a perfect 6-0 record for the weekend.   Congratulations to Ashley Rice for a stellar performance the entire tournament.  Rice not only captured the title but has won the opportunity to play in the next WPBA Pro event.
 
Many thanks to Tiger SMARTs sponsors:  Tiger Products, Ozone Billiards, Simonis, Aramith, and Quick-Clean for helping to make dreams come true.
 

Wilkie goes undefeated to claim his first 2017 Action Pool Tour title; King claims Ladies title

Shaun Wilkie

After being edged out by Dennis Orcollo in the 2017 VA State 10-Ball Championships last month (Feb.), Shaun Wilkie returned to the tables with a vengeance and went undefeated at the March 11-12 stop on the Action Pool Tour. On his trip to the hot seat (racing to 8), only one of his six opponents (Reymart Lim) got within two racks of him, giving him a win percentage to that point of 77% (48-14). Only his opponent in the finals (racing to 10), Chris Futrell, got as close as three racks, knocking his overall percentage down to 73% (58-21). The event drew 54 entrants to Q Master Billiards in Virginia Beach, VA. 
 
In a concurrently-run Ladies event, Nicole King came back from a double hill loss to Barbara Yeager in the battle for the hot seat to defeat her in the finals and claim the title. The ladies' event drew eight entrants to the same location.
 
In the main event, Wilkie faced four opponents to get into a winners' side semifinal against Reymart Lim. He shut out two of those four opponents (Jose Vega-Hernandez and Troy Simmons), after giving up two racks to Nilbert Lim (no relation to Reymart) and sandwiching an 8-3 win over Corey Bress into the middle. Futrell, in the meantime, found himself facing Bill Duggan in the other winners' side semifinal.
 
Reymart Lim chalked up more racks against Wilkie in their winners' side semifinal (six) than all of Wilkie's previous opponents combined, but it wasn't enough. By the same score, 8-6, Duggan sent Futrell to the loss side. Wilkie sent Duggan west 8-3 to claim the hot seat.
 
On the loss side, Futrell picked up Brian Dietzenbach, who, after being defeated by Reymart Lim in his first match, arrived at the 5/6 matches on the heels of a six-match, loss-side winning streak, including a shutout victory over Troy Simmons and a 7-2 win over Eric Moore. Reymart Lim drew RJ Carmona, who'd been sent west by Futrell in a winners' side quarterfinal. Carmona got by Corey Bress 7-4 and just did defeat Nilbert Lim 7-6. 
 
Carmona completed back-to-back victories over the Lims with a 7-5 victory over Reymart. In the quarterfinals, he faced Futrell, who'd ended Dietzenbach's loss-side winning streak 7-1. Futrell then eliminated Carmona 7-5 to face Duggan a second time in the semifinals. Futrell gave up only two racks to earn a second shot against Wilkie. Wilkie completed his undefeated run with a 10-7 victory over Futrell in the finals.
 
In the Ladies' event, five of the 14 total matches played went to double hill. Three of those five were played by Nicole King, who won two of them. She played back-to-back double hill matches to get into the finals. Following a 6-4 victory over Cheryl Pritchard, King defeated Daisy Lim, double hill, in one winners' side semifinal, as  Barbara Yeager was busy downing Gwen Townsend 6-4. Yeager claimed the hot seat, double hill over King and waited for her to return.
 
On the loss side, Lim picked up Meredith Lynch, who, following a defeat at the hands of Yeager in the opening round, had survived a double hill match against Jacki Duggan to draw Lim. Townsend drew Judie Wilson, who'd eliminated Pritchard, double hill.
 
Lim and Townsend advanced to the quarterfinals, having given up only a single rack between them against Lynch and Wilson (Wilson chalked up the solo rack, against Townsend). Townsend then defeated Lim 6-3 in the quarterfinals before being defeated in a double hill match by King in the semifinals. King came back and downed Yeager 8-4 in the finals to claim the event title.

Orcollo claims VA State 10-Ball Championship title

Dennis Orcollo

Lynch claims Women's title

 

Only two of the four finalists on-hand for the Open and Ladies' 2016 VA State 10-Ball Championships made it to the 2017 Championships, held on the weekend of February 11-12. In 2016, Janet Atwell and Jacki Duggan chalked up their second straight winner/runner-up (Atwell/Duggan) titles, and though Duggan competed in this year's event, finishing in the tie for 7th place, Atwell didn't play. Eric Moore and Brandon Shuff battled in the 2016 finals, and though Moore competed, finishing in the tie for 13th place, Shuff didn't play this year.

 
Instead, the respective 2017 Open and Ladies' titles went to Dennis Orcollo and Meredith Lynch
The Open event drew 60 entrants, while the Ladies' event drew 14, both to Diamond Billiards in Midlothian, VA.
 
Orcollo and the 2015 VA State 10-Ball Champion, Shaun Wilkie, battled twice in this year's event. Wilkie won their first match (one of the winners' side semifinals), and Orcollo won their second, in the finals.
 
Orcollo's position as the #3-ranked player in the world, may have led some to believe that he'd cut through this field like a hot knife through warm butter, but 'butter' fought back a bit in this event. Through his opening four matches, Orcollo was giving up between three and four racks per match; four each to Max Schlothauer and Jarrod Clowery, and three each to Chris Bruner and Reymart Lim. Orcollo was still a 'hot knife,' but his opponents in this event were doing a good imitation of butter just out of the refrigerator. In the winners' side semifinals, the 'hot knife' ran into some fresh-out-of-the-freezer butter, in the person of Shaun Wilkie, who defeated him 8-4 to get into the hot seat match. Wilkie was joined by Larry Kressel, who'd sent John Newton to the loss side 8-3 in their winners' side semifinal. Wilkie claimed the hot seat 8-4 over Kressel, and waited (the butter approaching room temperature) for the return of the 'hot knife.'
 
On the loss side, Orcollo picked up Mike Davis, who'd been defeated by Bobby Stovall in the second round and was in the midst of a six-match, loss-side winning streak that would take him just as far as Orcollo. Newton drew Reymart Lim, who'd gotten by Chris Futrell 6-2, and Sean Sporleder 6-4 to reach him. 
 
Orcollo cut through Davis without giving up a single rack, and in the quarterfinals, faced Lim, who'd given up only one rack to Newton. In the quarterfinals and semifinals, Lim and then, Kressel, put up back-to-back, three-racks-against fights, but were eliminated, sending Orcollo back for a re-match against Wilkie. 
 
It wasn't looking good for the 'knife' in the early going of the finals, as Wilkie took a 5-2 lead. Orcollo, though won eight of the next nine games to claim the event title.
 
Lynch goes undefeated to claim VA State Ladies' 10-Ball title
 
[photo id=45763|align=right]It took Meredith Lynch just five matches to claim the 2017 VA State Ladies' Championship title. She got into the hot seat with an aggregate score of 24-11. Once by Sierra Reams and Lisa Cossette, she faced Bethany Sykes in a winners' side semifinal, as Cheryl Pritchard squared off against Nicole Fleming. Lynch downed Sykes 6-3, and in the hot seat match, in their first of two, faced Pritchard, who'd sent Fleming west 6-4. Lynch gave up four of the 11 racks she'd given up to gain the hot seat by defeating Pritchard 6-4.
 
On the loss side, Sykes picked up Tina Malm (winner of the APT's Ladies' season opener in January), who'd been defeated by Cossette in the opening round, and gotten by Sierra Reams 5-3, Melissa Mason 5-2, and last year's runner-up, Jacki Duggan, double hill, to reach her. Fleming drew Daisy Lim, who, like Malm, had lost an opening round match (to Fleming 6-1) and downed Terry Stovall, double hill; Cossette 5-3, and Gwen Townsend, double hill to earn a re-match against Fleming.
 
Sykes and Fleming advanced to the quarterfinals; Sykes 5-2 over Malm, and Fleming 5-3 over Lim, a second time. Three straight double hill battles marked the end of the Ladies' event. Fleming downed Sykes in the quarterfinals, and then, Pritchard eliminated Fleming in the semifinals. Pritchard put up a double hill fight in her second match against Lynch, but Lynch hung on to win 8-7.

Mancuso Wins WPBA Georgia State 9-Ball Championship

Belinda Calhoun and Nikki Banish Mancuso

Rack and Grill II was the host site for the WPBA Georgia State 9-Ball Championship.  Owner, Kris Kuneman was celebrating his 70th Birthday on July 16 with family and friends while the women were celebrating the competition. Tiger SMART wishes Chris the happiest of Birthdays.
 
Tiger SMART was thrilled to see Nikki Benish Mancuso return to the arena having been away from the game since 2000.  Nikki’s entourage, Father Ray Benish, husband Joe Mancuso and eleven year old son, Cameron were also her training team and showed what a good team they were. Nikki was consistently a top 16 ranked player while she was on the tour.
 
After losing 4-7 to Calhoun in the first round, Nikki tore through the loser’s bracket with wins over Krystal Kelson 7-4; Christi Steele 7-6; Marianne Merrill 7-6; Cheryl Pritchard 7-1; and Buffy Jolie 7-1 to get to the final match against Calhoun.  Nikki was in dead punch and ran, going away 9-4 for the title. Congratulations to Nikki Mancuso for her WPBA Georgia State 9-Ball Championship.
 
Congratulations to all the players and to Buffy Jolie – 3rd; Cheryl Pritchard – 4th; Tiffany Stidham 5-6; Marianne Merrill 5-6; Lisa Cossette – 7-8; and Christi Steele – 7-8.
 
Tiger SMART would like to acknowledge Tiger Products, Simonis, Aramith, Quick-Clean, and Ozone Billiards for their continued support of our phenomenal sport.

Atwell successfully defends VA State 10-Ball title against Jacki Duggan

Ozzy Reynolds (APT Owner), Jacki Duggan, Janet Atwell and Raymond Walters (APT Tour Director)

For the second year in a row, the Women's VA State 10-Ball Championships came down to Janet Atwell and Jacki Duggan squaring off in both the hot seat match and the finals. And also for the second year, Atwell won both matches to claim that title. The 2016 event drew 18 entrants to Diamond Billiards in Midlothian, VA, on the weekend of February 13-14.
 
In her first 34 games, over five matches, Atwell chalked up an aggregate score of 30-4. She'd shut out Kristine Wylie (opening round), and given up only a single rack to Nicole Monaco (third round). In between, Tina Scott, who finished third in 2015, managed to take three against her in the second round.  Atwell chalked up her third shutout against Buffy Jolie in a winners' side semifinal.
 
Duggan, in the meantime, was awarded an opening round bye, before being challenged, double hill, by Sierra Reams. Duggan advanced to defeat Kia Sidbury and in the other winners' side semifinal, Judie Wilson, both 7-2. Atwell added a fourth shutout, over Duggan, to claim the hot seat. Atwell had also shut Duggan out in the 2015 hot seat match.
 
On the loss side, Buffy Jolie picked up Meredith Lynch, who'd gotten by Cheryl Pritchard 5-3 and survived a double hill fight over Sidbury. Wilson drew Nicole Monaco, who, after her defeat at the hands of Atwell on the winners' side, had defeated Nicole King 5-3 and Kassandra Bein 5-2. 
 
Monaco defeaTed Wilson, as Jolie eliminated Lynch, both 5-2. It was Lynch's second straight finish in the tie for fifth place, while Wilson improved from 21st in 2015 to fifth this year. 
 
Monaco defeated Jolie 5-2 in the quarterfinals, but ran into a very determined Duggan, who gave up only a single rack to her in the semifinals. Atwell, though, proved to be equally determined. Though Duggan would improve on her 2015 performance in the finals against Atwell (1-9), Atwell prevailed in 2016, 8-3, to claim her second straight VA State 10-Ball Championship.

Mazon chalks up a second undefeated win on the Action Pool Tour; the VA State 8-Ball Championships

Jundel Mazon and Brandon Shuff

Whitman comes from the loss side to capture Women's title

 

Jundel Mazon of the Philippines has been among the top 10 finishers in 10 events this year, including a stop on the Q City 9-Ball Tour (2nd), the NC State 8-Ball Championships (3rd), the Gotham City Classic (7th), the US Open 9-Ball Championships, the 4th Annual Steinway Classic, the Houston Open and 42nd Annual Texas Open (all 9th), but he has only won twice, both times on the Action Pool Tour. In September, he defeated Brandon Shuff in the finals to take the APT's seventh tour stop. On the weekend of November 14-15, he defeated Shuff a second time in the finals to take the tour's ninth stop and become the second player to win the VA State 8-Ball Championships, which drew 36 entrants to Diamond Billiards in Midlothian, VA.

 
In a concurrently-run Women's event, Kim Whitman won three on the loss side to meet and defeat Barbara Yeager in the finals to become the second VA State 8-Ball Women's champion. The Women's event drew nine entrants. 
 
Mazon's path through the 36-entrant field avoided a confrontation versus the event's defending champion, Mike Davis, who was sent to the loss side by Danny Green in the third round, and eliminated by Nilbert Lim in the matches that determined the tie for seventh. Following a bye and a second round shutout over Luther Pickerall, Mazon did have to face the APT's top-ranked player, Shaun Wilkie (runner-up to Davis in 2013) in a match that went double hill, before advancing Mazon to a match versus Green. He defeated Green to face Larry Kressel in a winners' side semifinal. Shuff, in the meantime (third in 2013), faced Reymart Lim.
 
Mazon downed Kressel 7-5, as Shuff was sending Lim over 7-3. In their first of two, Mazon defeated Shuff 7-2 and sat in the hot seat, waiting for him to get back.
 
On the loss side, Kressel picked up Nilbert Lim, who'd just eliminated Cary Dunn and Davis, both 6-4. Reymart Lim ran into Danny Green, who'd defeated Brian Dietzenbach and Shannon Fitch, also both 6-4. Lim battled to double hill before being ousted by Green, who, in the quarterfinals, met Kressel, who'd shut Lim out. Green and Kressel battled to double hill before Green advanced for a shot against Shuff in the semifinals. 
 
Shuff took the semifinal match versus Green 6-2 and got a second shot at Mazon in the hot seat. To no avail, as Mazon took the extended, single race 9-2 to capture the VA State 8-Ball Championships title.
 
In the Women's event, unattended by the 2013 winner and runner-up (Cheryl Pritchard and Jackie Rivera) Kim Whitman and Barbara Yeager battled twice for the title; once in a winners' side semifinal and again, in the finals, in two very different kinds of matches. The small field dictated that a single match put both of them into the winners' side semifinals; Whitman had defeated Sierra Reams 6-4 and Yeager had shut out Soo Emmett. Sheri Bruner and Jacki Duggan, in the meantime, squared off in the other winners' side semifinal.
 
Duggan advanced to the hot seat match with a 6-2 victory over Bruner, and was met by Yeager, who'd shut Whitman out. Yeager claimed the hot seat 6-3 over Duggan and waited for what turned out to be the fateful, and quite different second match against Whitman.
 
On the loss side, Bruner picked up Reams, who'd defeated Emmett 5-2. Whitman drew Nicole Fleming, who'd eliminated Tina Scott 5-3. Bruner and Whitman advanced to quarterfinals; Bruner 5-2 over Reams and Whitman 5-3 over Fleming. Whitman gave up only a single rack to Bruner in the quarterfinals, and completely shut out Duggan in the semifinals. In sharp contrast to their meeting in the hot seat match, Yeager and Whitman fought to double hill before Whitman prevailed to take the Women's title.