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Yapp wins 9-ball and 10-ball events at $10K-added, 3rd Annual Meucci Classic

Silviana Lu and Aloysius Yapp

Silviana Lu wins Ladies 9-ball

Yep, Yapp won ‘em both. And his girlfriend, Silviana Lu won the other one. 

The 3rd Annual Meucci Classic at Racks Billiards Sports Bar & Grill in Sanford, FL this past weekend (Nov. 10-13) gave Singapore’s Aloysius Yapp his third and fourth 2022 event victory, which added to his already-best (recorded with us) earnings year since we recorded his first two cash winnings in September of 2012, a week apart; a 17th place finish at the Party Poker World Cup of Pool in Quezon City in the Philippines (won by Mika Immonen) and a week+ later, a 33rd place finish at the China Open in Shanghai (won by Dennis Orcollo). 

So, the Meucci Classic was nowhere near his first rodeo. By the same token, Yapp’s presence outside of a fairly consistent group of world-travelling pool professionals had him flying under a lot of the US pool-playing radar until he showed up in the finals of the 2021 US Open 9-Ball Championships in Atlantic City and battled in the finals (unsuccessfully) against Carlo Biado. He became a much more consistently-present figure for the rest of the year, with appearances in (among others) the American 14:1 Straight Pool Championships (9th), the International 9-Ball Open (17th), the International Open’s Big Foot 10-Ball (3rd behind Joshua Filler and Mika Immonen) and a win on the Predator US Pro Billiard Series in Battle Creek, Michigan.

He’s cashed in 19 events this year, winning four of them, runner-up in two and 3rd in three. He won this year’s Michigan Open and the Sandcastle Open before heading to the eastern shores of Virginia where he finished 9th at this year’s International Open 9-Ball tournament and was 3rd for the second time at the Big Foot 10-Ball event; this time, behind the juggernaut known as Fedor Gorst and Joshua Filler. He shuffled off to Sanford, FL last weekend, where he went undefeated through seven opponents, downing Austria’s Max Lechner twice; double hill in the hot seat match and 9-5 in the finals of the $4,000-added, 121-entrant 9-Ball tournament.

Left in the good-company dust (among others) were Austria’s Wiktor Zielinski, Poland’s Mieszko Fortunski, Germany’s Moritz Neuhausen, Finland’s Mika Immonen, Austria’s Mario He, Greece’s Alex Kazakis and Estonia’s Denis Grabe. Lithuania’s Pijus Labutis finished the tournament with the distinction of having won the most consecutive matches, 10 of them on the loss side, before he was stopped by Lechner in the semifinals. Leading the American charge for the title was BJ Ussery, Jr., who finished 4th; an outstanding finish for the South/mid-Atlantic competitor. Also in the US lineup were local stalwarts Anthony Meglino, Donny Mills, Mike Delawder, Raymond Linares, Bobby Garza and 1992’s US Open 9-Ball Champion, Tommy Kennedy.

The 3rd Annual Meucci Classic’s $5,000-added, 63-entrant 10-Ball Tournament was a different story. Same ending, just a different story. The 10-Ball battles preceded and overlapped the 9-Ball battles, so Yapp availed himself of the six-opponent practice opportunity, with an extra ball in the game, and went undefeated. He got by Poland’s Konrad Juszczyszyn and two Americans, George Saunders and Alan Rolon Rosado, to advance to the 16-player, single-elimination phase of the event. Yapp was joined in the winners’ side advancement by Wiktor Zielinski, Bosnia/Herzegovina’s Sanjin Pehlivanovich, Dmitri Loukatos, Taipei’s Jung Lin Chan and Jeffrey DeLuna. BJ Ussery, Jr., who’d go on to finish fourth in the 9-Ball competition, advanced, as did Donny Mills. Joining them from the loss side were Adam Wheeler, Max Lechner, Pijus Labutis (who would not get the most consecutive win prize in this event), Jani Uski, Mika Immonen, Mario He, David Singleton and Denis Grabe.

Ussery would engage in the only double hill battle of the single-elimination’s first round, against Jani Uski, and it would knock him out of the 10-Ball competition. Three of the four quarterfinal matches went double hill; Immonen over Uski, Yapp over Labutis, and Grabe over Lechner. Zielinski downed Pehlivanovic 11-5.

Zielinski ‘iced’ the Iceman, allowing him only a single rack in one of the semifinal matches, while Yapp was a little busier, eliminating Grabe 11-7. Yapp claimed the 10-Ball title with a stingy 11-3 victory over Zielinski.

Indonesia’s Silviana Lu goes undefeated, winning 81% of her 37 games to claim Ladies title

In this, her first year as a cash-winning player in our AZBilliards database, Indonesia’s Silviana Lu has cashed in only two events. She finished in a tie for 5th place at the Asian Pool Federation’s 9-Ball Open, Women’s Division in August. A month later, she finished in the tie for 9th place at the WPBA’s Michigan Open. Her boyfriend, Singapore’s Aloysius Yapp finished in the tie for 17th in the former event and won the latter.

She has recorded her first event victory with us as a result of going undefeated through a field of 27 entrants in the $1,000-added Ladies 9-Ball event. And she did so by defeating her six opponents with an 81% game-winning average (30-7), shutting out half of them and not allowing any of them to chalk up more than three against her; Nicolle Cuellar, who has Florida-area tour victories and cash finishes going back 10 years to the former Flamingo Tour.

Note to competitors looking to take advantage of the increased amount of money being offered at Scotch Doubles events across the country: In addition to the Fillers (Joshua and Pia) and the Fedor Gorst/Kristina Tkach pairing, you might want to watch out for the Yapp/Lu partnership.

Lu’s trip to the winners’ circle went through Marge Soash (0), Cuellar (3), Palmoa Santana (1) and Jessica Human (1) to arrive at the hot seat match versus Jennifer Berzinski to whom she gave up two racks to claim the seat. Adriana Villar, who lost her opening match to Cuellar and won eight on the loss side (shutting out three and surviving a double hill match against Helene Caukin), challenged Lu in the finals. Lu shut her out to claim the event title.

In addition to the 218 participants in the three events (with some duplication), tour representatives thanked title sponsor Meucci Cues, the ownership and staff at Rack’s for their hospitality, Outsville, JB Cases, Carlos Sanchez productions, Fort Worth Billiards Superstore and Clutch Shot Billiards Apparel.

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From the loss side, Rodriguez chalks up first Sunshine State Pro Am Tour victory in three years

Mike DeLawder, Trenton White and Ricardo Joel Rodriguez

Barnes goes undefeated to claim concurrently-run Ladies event

One did it the hard way, while the other opted for the shorter, arguably more difficult easy way. Ricardo Rodriguez, looking for his first win on the Sunshine State ProAm Tour in three years, lost his third winners’ side match at this past weekend’s (Oct. 8-9) tour stop He then won seven straight on the loss side before downing Trenton White in the finals to claim the event title. Jessica Barnes took the shorter route in the concurrently-run Ladies event, winning five in a row and downing Nicole Cuellar twice to claim the ladies’ title.

The $1,500 added main event drew 60 entrants to Brewlands Bar & Billiards North in Lakeland, FL. The $500-added Ladies event drew 16 entrants to the same location.

Rodriguez’ path took him past Marcos Bielostozky and George Saunders, both 7-5, before he ran into a double hill match versus Desi Derado that he lost. Mike DeLawder and Trenton White, in the meantime, worked their way forward toward their hot seat match; White advancing through Mike Xiarhos, Jr., Leon Micco, Dale Stanley and Konnor McFayden to arrive at a winners’ side semifinal against Robert Noon, while DeLawder sent Anthony Cruz, co-tour-director Bobby Garza, and both Manuel Montas and John Souders (both double hill) to the loss side to draw Ameet Kukadia in the other winners’ side semifinal.

DeLawder came within a game of being forced into his third straight double hill fight, but just did edge out in front near the end to defeat Kukadia 7-5. White joined him in the hot seat match after surviving his double hill struggle against Noon. White shut Delawder out to claim the hot seat.

On the loss side, it was Kukadia who drew the finals-bound Rodriguez, who’d just eliminated junior competitors Kaylee McIntosh 7-2 and Konnor McFayden 7-4. Noon picked up David Singleton, who’d defeated John Souders 7-3 and survived a double hill match versus Garza to reach him.

Rodriguez defeated Kukadia 7-5 and was joined in the quarterfinals by Noon, who’d put Singleton on the wrong side of his second straight double-hill match. Rodriguez took the quarterfinal match 7-5 over Noon and then, by the same score, denied DeLawder his second chance against White.

Rodriguez waste little time. He took the finals against White 9-5 to claim the event title

Nicole Cuellar, Sofia Mast and Jessica Barnes

Barnes gets into a 7-3 groove to the hot seat match

Jessica Barnes seemed to decide that since she had gotten herself into a groove of some kind that she should probably stick with it. She defeated her first three opponents on her way to the Ladies win by the same 7-3 score, defeating co-tour-director Janene Phillips, Erica Pennington and, in a winners’ side semifinal, the Pink Dagger (aka junior competitor Sofia Mast). Nicole Cuellar, in the meantime, got by Sandra Micco, Cami Becker and in her winners’ side semifinal, Margie Soash 7-1.

Cuellar knocked Barnes out of her 7-3 groove in the hot seat match, but it wasn’t enough. Barnes survived Cuellar’s double hill challenge to claim the hot seat.

On the loss side, Soash picked up and was defeated by Helen Caukin 5-1, as The Pink Dagger drew and eliminated Kaylee McIntosh by the same score. Mast defeated Caukin 5-2 in the quarterfinals, only to have her brief, loss-side run upset by Cuellar’s desire for a rematch against Barnes. Cuellar won that battle 5-1. Barnes downed Cuellar a second time, 9-5, to claim the Ladies title.

Tour directors Janene Phillips and Bobby Garza thanked Larry Wathall and his staff at Brewlands “for taking great care (them) all weekend,” as well as title sponsor Predator Cues, Kamui Brand, Diamond Billiard Products, Jamison Daniels, Stitch It To Me Embroidery, AZBilliards, Dr. V’s Custom Shop and Central Florida Pool League. ‘Shout outs’ were extended to Bobby Garza and Lights Out Streaming for providing great stream and commentary, along with Jimmy Antonietta, Rob McLaren, Mike D and George Saunders for their commentating and  Adam Hanas for helping run the boards. 

In light of the fact that the tour had a junior competitor among the final three in both of this past weekend’s events (Trenton White and Sofia Mast) and because, like so many others,  who enjoy watching these young competitors succeed in their early pool careers, Phillips and Garza thanked Asia Cy for donating an entry fee to a junior lady, Leah Holler and wished to make mention of two local individuals who are “doing great things for the junior competitors’ –  Danielle Fee with Shooting for the Stars and Eddie Altman with Junior Billiards Scholarship Fund. If you’d like to help support a junior program, reach out to either of these organizations.

The next and final stop of the year for the Sunshine State ProAm Tour, scheduled for the weekend of Nov. 26-27 and hosted by Racks Billiards in Sanford, FL will feature two events; a $1,000-added Open One Pocket event and a $2,500-added Open 9-Ball Bar Box Championship. 

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Linares and Seaver Sisters Win in Bradenton

David Singleton, Raymond Linares and Lee Heuwagen

Livingston’s Billiards in Bradenton Florida was the place to be on July 23rd if you wanted to watch top level pool as the Sunshine State Predator Pro/Am Pool Tour held a 44 player open event as well as a 23 player open ladies event. 

When all of the balls had been pocketed early Sunday morning, it was Raymond Linares standing undefeated in the open event. Linares had wins over Juan Trevino, Dawson Kleist, Alec Saputo, Randal McLuckie and Desi Derado to get to the hot-seat match, where he had to face David Singleton. 

Singleton took advantage of a first round bye, and then defeated Joseph Holler, Justin McNulty, Will Smith and Donny Mills. 

Linares took the hot-seat with a 7-3 win over Singleton. 

On the one loss side, Lee Heuwagen was on a tear. Heuwagen had lost his first match of the day to Mike Mathieu 7-3, but wasn’t going to let that stop him. Heuwagen won six straight on the one loss side, without allowing an opponent to even get to the hill against him. That winning streak was only slowed down when Donny Mills got to hill-hill before Heuwagen sent him home in 4th place. Heuwagen then made quick work of Singleton in the semi-final match 5-1. 

The final match was an extended race to 9 that didn’t get started until early Sunday morning. Heuwagen looked to have things well under control as he raced to an early lead, but Linares fought back to win the match 9-7. 

Vanessa and Jeannie Seaver with Kimberly Housman

While the open event was crowning its champion, the Open Ladies Event came down to a sisterly split between Jeannie and Vanessa Seaver. Both players went undefeated until they faced each other for the hot-seat. Jeannie won that match 7-1, but Vanessa was right back in the finals after a 5-2 win over Kimberly Housman in the semi-finals. Instead of duking it out one more time in the finals, the Seaver sisters agreed to split first and second place. 

Tour operators sent out their thanks to Livingston Billiards owners Jesse and Teresa Marlow, as well as tour sponsors Predator Group, Kamui Brand, Diamond Billiard Products, Stitch It To Me Embroidery, Central Florida USA Pool League and Jamison Daniels. 

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De Luna, Meglino and ‘déjà vu all over again’ on Sunshine State Predator Pro Am Tour

Anthony Meglino, CJ Wiley, Jeffrey De Luna and David Singleton

You’d think, given the sample size (nation-wide players and events, over a lot of time) that it would be a lot more common. Two competitors going back-to-back as winner and runner-up at successive stops on a pool tour. But as it actually happens? Rare.

Jeffrey De Luna and Anthony Meglino repeated their winner/runner-up scene from the last weekend in February on the last weekend in March on the Sunshine State Predator Pro Am Tour. De Luna went undefeated in February, having downed Meglino in the hot seat match and finals. He went just as undefeated this past weekend (March 27-28) and for the second time, downed Meglino in the hot seat and finals. And if Meglino hadn’t stepped up his game a bit in the finals of this last one (winning two more games) they’d have gone back-to-back and finished with identical scores in the final two matches. The $750-added (plus $370 raffle) event drew 61 entrants to Boulevard Billiards in Ocala, FL.

De Luna’s path to the hot seat this time around went through Jodi Rubin, Francisco Serrano, Benjie Estor and CJ Wiley (who Meglino played and defeated in both events), to arrive at a winners’ side semifinal against David Singleton. Meglino got by Jay Stock, Cody Ingle, Don Kreischer and John Francisco to arrive at his winners’ semifinal matchup against co-tour director, Bobby Garza.

De Luna got into the hot seat match 7-4 over Singleton. Meglino joined him with a 7-2 win over Garza. And for the second time in a row, De Luna claimed the hot seat 7-3.

On the loss side, Garza picked up CJ Wiley, who’d lost to De Luna 7-3 in a winners’ side quarterfinal. Wiley then defeated Jon Gore 5-2 and survived a double hill fight versus Les Duffy to face Garza. Singleton drew Steve Foster, who’d lost his winners’ side quarterfinal match to Garza 7-1 and defeated Alec Saputo and Jason Richko, both 5-1.

Garza and CJ Wiley locked up in a double hill fight that eventually sent Wiley to the quarterfinals. He was joined by Singleton, who’d eliminated Foster 5-2. Wiley stretched his loss-side trip by one more match, downing Singleton 5-3 in those quarterfinals. Meglino earned his second shot against De Luna in the hot seat with a 5-1 victory over Wiley in the semifinals (Meglino had fought and won a double hill match against Mike Delawder in the February semifinals).

Meglino’s strong showing versus CJ Wiley may have contributed to his picking up a couple of extra games in his second finals versus De Luna in a row. De Luna, though, prevailed a second time and claimed his second straight Sunshine State Predator Pro Am title in a row 9-4. De Luna played five more games than he had in February and lost four of those extra games; winning 51 games total, both times. Meglino played nine games less, total, winning 55 in the Feb. event and only 50 this time around. He lost nine less (42-33). The February event drew more than twice the numbers, thus fewer matchups, overall.

Tour directors Janene Phillips and Bobby Garza thanked Don Kreischer and his staff for their hospitality, as well as title sponsor, Predator Cues.

“We are very grateful to have Predator as our title sponsor,” they wrote. “We look forward to being a part of the best cue maker in the business and can’t wait to see what they are working on next!”

They added further thanks to their other sponsors, Kamui, Diamond Products, Stitch It To Me Embroidery and the Central Florida USA Pool League, as well as giving a “shout out” to Rob McLaren, who’s been their “right hand man for the past few stops.” They also thanked Leah Nusbaum of Leah Nusbaum Photography for photos and her help with the event.

According to Phillips and Garza, the next stop on the Sunshine State Predator Pro Am Tour, scheduled for the weekend of April 24-25, for 600 and under Fargo Rates, has already been sold out. The tour will hold an Open 9-Ball event the following weekend, May 1-2 at Stroker’s Billiards in Palm Harbor, FL.

Rodriguez goes undefeated, chalks up ‘anniversary’ win on the Sunshine State Pro Am Tour

Les Duffy, Jerry Arvelaez & Ricardo Joel Rodriguez

When Ricardo Joel Rodriguez stepped to the tables this past weekend, Oct. 3-4, to compete on the Sunshine State Pro Am Tour, he was looking to repeat his performance on the weekend of Oct. 5-6, 2019, when he won on the same tour, at the same location (Brewlands Bar & Billiards in Lakeland, FL) and collected the same 1st place prize of $1,000. This year’s $1,400-added event on the tour ($1,000 from Brewlands owner, Larry Wathal and $400 from the raffle of a Predator Cue) drew a full field of 64 entrants with 16 players on a waiting list.

Rodriguez had to get by Les Duffy twice to complete his undefeated run. The two had distinctly different trips to the winners’ side semifinal when they met for the first time. Rodriguez, racing to 8, faced four opponents (Jacob Songer, Anthony Fisher, Trenton White and Marcos Bielostozky) and played 50 games, winning 64% of them (32-18). Duffy, racing to 7, faced four opponents, as well (Francisco Serrano, Joselito Martinez, Kyle Fee and Alberto Perez), but only played a total of 34 games. He won 82% of those games (28-6), bolstered by back-to-back shutouts over Fee and Perez. 

In the meantime, Jerry Arvelaez worked his way to the other winners’ side semifinal against David Singleton. Arvelaez’s trip was (statistically) about halfway between Rodriguez and Duffy; four opponents (Micah Daughtery, Monthrep Hongsyok, Jimmy Antonietta & Enrique Gamez), 40 games, a 77% game-winning percentage (31-9) and one shutout, over Antonietta. Singleton, just to complete what turned out to be the event’s top four finishers, got by Nick Lewis, Derek Laprairie, Chris Filippelli and what ended up being the event’s top finishing female, Nicole Cuellar. Singleton rounded out the percentage ‘game’ at 70%; winning 29 of the 41 that had gotten him as far as the winners’ side semifinal. 

The four arrived at the winners’ side semifinals, in game-percentage winning order as 1) Duffy, 2) Arvelaez, 3) Singleton and 4) Rodriguez. Rodriguez would, in two matches, jump four steps to win it, as the other three maintained the relative positions they held going into those winners’ side semifinals.

Singleton downed Arvelaez 8-3, as Rodriguez was busy sending Duffy to the loss side 8-4. Rodriguez claimed the hot seat 7-4 over Arvelaez and waited on Duffy’s return.

On the loss side, Duffy picked up Sam Kantar, who was working on a six-match, loss-side winning streak that was about to end and had recently included victories over Gamez 7-2 and a shutout over Cuellar. Singleton drew Bielostozky, who, following his defeat at the hands of Rodriguez, had survived two straight double hill matches and eliminated Joselito Martinez and Ameet Kukadia.

Singleton and Duffy got right back to winning ‘work.’ Singleton downed Bielostozky 7-2 and in the quarterfinals, faced Duffy, who’d stopped Kantar’s winning streak 7-3. Duffy then dropped Singleton 7-5 in those quarterfinals and left Arvelaez in 3rd place with a 6-4 victory that earned him his second shot against Rodriguez, waiting for him in the hot seat.

Duffy began the final race to 10 with one ‘bead on the wire’ and got out to a lead that at the 7-4 mark, looked fairly grim for Rodriguez. But Rodriguez fought back, winning five of the next six games to bring the match to a double hill, final game. Duffy broke the final rack into what looked like a winning layout. He played to the 5-ball and scratched. Rodriguez took the ball in hand and completed the rack to claim the event title.

Tour directors Janene Phillips and Bobby Garza thanked Larry Wathal and his Brewlands staff, as well as title sponsor The Predator Group, Kamui, Central Florida USA Pool League, Stitch It To Me Embroidery, Diamond Products, and AZBilliards. The next event on the Sunshine State Pro Am Tour, scheduled for the weekend of November 14-15, will be the tour’s Amateur 9-Ball Bar Box Championships, to be hosted by Racks Sports Bar & Billiards, in Sanford, FL.

Two veteran opponents – Kennedy and Meglino – split top prizes on Sunshine State Pro Am Tour

(l to r): Tommy Kennedy, Scott Rohleder & Anthony Meglino

Though Tommy Kennedy and Anthony Meglino were the last two left standing during the season finale of the Sunshine State Pro Am Tour on December 7-8, they were far from being the only veteran Southeast USA pool players among the 42 entrants. Many of these players sport resumes that date back to the early years of the century. Kennedy, of course, has a resume that began, more or less (not including his life as a road warrior) with his victory over Johnny Archer (twice) in the 1992 US Open 9-Ball Championships and was updated this past weekend with his undefeated run through the Sunshine State Pro Am’s season finale field. Meglino, who finished as runner-up in this event has a history that dates (through AZBilliards) back to 2007, when he finished 5th at a stop on Kennedy’s Southeast Open 9-Ball Tour; Kennedy finished 7th at that event, which was won by Nathan Rose, who finished in the tie for 5th place at this most recent event and concluded the 2019 Sunshine State Pro Am season as its Player of the Year.
 
This inter-connected, one-big-happy-family, $500-added event drew its 42 entrants to Park Ave. Billiards in Orange Park, FL. Though Kennedy and Meglino were the finalists, at 3 a.m. on Sunday morning, they opted out of a final match, leaving Kennedy, the undefeated occupant of the hot seat, as the official winner.
 
They did meet in the event, once, in a winners’ side quarterfinal. They battled to double hill before Kennedy prevailed and moved on to face Andrew Pettenger in one of the two winners’ side semifinals. Meanwhile, Scott Rohleder (a relatively new member of this family) survived a double hill, winners’ side quarterfinal fight against Nick Applebee to draw the aforementioned Nathan Rose in the other winners’ side semifinal.
 
Two double hill matches sent Rose and Pettenger to the loss side, advancing Kennedy and Rohleder to the hot seat match. Kennedy claimed the hot seat 7-3 over Rohleder in what proved to be his last match of the weekend.
 
On the loss side, Rose ran into another marquee matchup against Meglino, who, after his defeat at the hands of Kennedy had defeated the tour’s top junior player Trenton White 7-5 and David Singleton 7-1. Pettenger drew David Grossman, who, after a second-round loss to Rohleder, set out on a six-match, loss-side winning streak that had most recently included victories over Clint Nichols 7-3 and a double hill win over James Sandaler.
 
Pettenger put an end to Grossman’s loss-side streak 7-3 and advanced to the quarterfinals. He was joined by Meglino, but not before he and Rose had battled to double hill. Meglino then eliminated Pettenger 7-4 in those quarterfinals.
 
Meglino appeared to be picking up some speed, after his successful match against Rose. His victory over Pettenger was followed by a 7-2 victory over Rohleder in the semifinals.
 
He and Kennedy then opted out of the final match. Kennedy went into ‘the books’ as the event’s official winner.
 
Tour directors Janene Phillips and Bobby Garza thanked Carl Watt and his Park Ave. Billiards staff for their hospitality, as well as title sponsor Predator Cues, Central Florida USA Pool League, Stitch it to me Embroidery, Diamond Products & Cyclop Balls, AZ Billiards & Cue Sports Studios for streaming. The Sunshine State Pro Am Tour will return on February 1, 2020 with a season opener at Stroker’s in Palm Harbor, FL. At that event, they will present the 2019 Player Awards, to include recognition of Nathan Rose as its Player of the Year, Trenton White as its Top Junior and Stephanie Mitchell as Lady of the Year.

Singleton downs Fitch in finals to capture Sunshine State Pro Am Bar Box Championship

(l to r): Andrew Pettenger, David Singleton & Shannon Fitch

David Singleton’s victory at the Sunshine State Pro Am’s Amateur Bar Box Championships on the weekend of November 16-17, was not only his first victory on the tour, it officially made 2019 his best earnings year to date. At two previous stops on the tour, back in January and July, he’d finished in both in the tie for 9th place. He and Brian McBride finished in the tie for 5th place in September at the tour’s 2nd Annual Big Dawg Scotch Doubles Tournament. According to available records, Singleton has only cashed in five events in the past three years; the extent of his known activity at the tables. Shannon Fitch, on the other hand, while also in the midst of his best earnings year to date, has cash-winning records dating back over 20 years, was also looking to chalk up his first victory on the Sunshine State Pro Am Tour. The $2,200-added event drew 84 players to Racks Billiards in Sandford, FL.
 
It was a five-match march to their first meeting in the hot seat. Singleton followed an opening round bye with victories over Randall McLuckie, Jose Guerro Baez, Christopher Anderson and Bobby Garza (double hill) to draw Jon Gore in one of the winners’ side semifinals. Fitch, also opening with a bye, advanced through Thomas White, Hector Ortiz, Robert Noon and the tour’s #1-ranked competitor going into this event, Nathan Rose, to arrive at a winners’ side semifinal matchup against David Jacobs.
 
Fitch downed Jacobs 9-5, as Singleton was busy sending Gore to the loss side 9-7. In their first of two, Fitch claimed the hot seat 9-3 and waited for Singleton’s return from the semifinals.
 
On the loss side, Gore drew Andrew Pettenger, who, after an opening round bye, had lost to Mike Delawder in the second round, and embarked on a seven-match, loss-side winning streak that would take him as far as the semifinals. He’d most recently defeated Nathan Rose 7-6 and Jai Smith 7-5. Jacobs drew Garza, who after his loss to Singleton had eliminated Racks’ owner Pedro Botta 7-2 and Jose Guerro Baez 7-5.
 
Garza and Jacobs locked up in a double hill fight that eventually sent Jacobs to the quarterfinals. Pettenger joined him after defeating Gore 7-5. Pettenger chalked up the last match of his loss-side streak 7-5 over Jacobs, before Singleton defeated him 6-2 in the semifinals.
 
For the finals, the race was extended to 11 games. Singleton won it 11-7 to claim the event title and move up significantly, to within the top 10, of the tour’s highest-ranked players.
 
Tour directors Janene Phillips and Bobby Garza thanked Pedro Botta and his Rack’s staff for their hospitality, as well as title sponsor Predator Cues, Cue Sports Studios (for streaming), Leah Nusbaum Photography, Stitch-It-To-Me Embroidery, Diamond Products, Cyclop Balls, Central Florida USA Pool League and AZBilliards. The next stop on the Sunshine State Pro Am Tour, scheduled for Saturday, December 7, will be hosted by Park Ave. Billiards in Orange Park, FL.

Burgos goes undefeated to take Sunshine State Pro Am Tour stop

(l to r): Anthony Meglino, Jose Baez & Julio Burgos

On the weekend of July 13-14, Julio Burgos added a sixth cash payout to his page in the AZBilliards database, dating back to January, 2018. It was his third entry as a tournament winner, having won a stop on the AllOutPool Tour in June of last year, and a stop on the J. Pechauer Southeast Open 9-Ball Tour in January of this year. His third tournament win, an undefeated run through a field of 64 entrants at the $1,300-added, 8-ball Bar Box Open on the Sunshine State Pro Am Tour, was hosted by Racks Billiards and Sports Bar in Sanford, FL.
 
Burgos launched his run to a third tournament win against Mike Delawder, downing him 6-4. He then defeated George Saunders 6-2, Bobby Garza 6-1 and Anthony Meglino 6-3 to draw Nathan Rose in one of the winners’ side semifinals. Jose Guerra Baez, in the meantime, searching for his first tour win took a path to the hot seat that went through Julio Delpozo 6-2, Ameet Kukadia 6-4, and two straight double hill wins, over Milton Strack and David Singleton, to arrive at his winners’ side semifinal match against Ricardo Joel Rodriguez.
 
Burgos and Baez advanced to the hot seat match on the heels of two, double hill matches that sent Rose and Rodriguez to the loss side. It was Burgos’ double hill match of the tournament. It was Baez’ third straight double hill win. Burgos claimed the hot seat with a 6-2 win over Baez and waited on his return.
 
Over on the loss side, Rose picked up Chris Gentile, who’d defeated Chad Rhodes and Bobby Garza, both 4-2, to reach him. Rodriguez drew Meglino, who, following his defeat at the hands of Burgos, had shut out Serafin Serrano and eliminated Kim Dyer, double hill (4-3).
 
Rose and Gentile locked up in a double hill fight that eventually sent Gentile home and Rose to the quarterfinals. Meglino, in the meantime, gave up only a single rack to Rodriguez and joined Rose in the quarterfinals. Meglino took the quarterfinal match 4-2 over Rose, and then had his four-match, loss-side winning streak snapped by Baez 4-1 in the semifinals.
 
With Burgos looking to chalk up his third win of six cash payouts and Baez already at his best finish, to date, and looking for his first major tour win, the finals had a lot at stake for both of them. Burgos completed his undefeated run, downing Baez 8-5 to claim the event title.
 
Tour director Janene Phillips thanked Racks’ owners Anthony Digiacomo and Pedro Botta, as well as Predator Cues, Kamui, Cyclop Balls, USA Pool League, Diamond Products, Stitch It To Me Embroidery, AZ Billiards and Cue Sports Studios (for the event’s live stream). The next stop on the Sunshine State Pro Am Tour, scheduled for the weekend of Sept. 7-8, will be the 2nd Annual Battle of the Billiards Scotch Doubles Tournament, to be hosted by Strokers in Palm Harbor, FL.

Meglino goes undefeated, downing Fisher twice to win Sunshine State Pro Am Tour stop

(l to r): Marvin Llamas, Anthony Meglino & Anthony Fisher

Anthony Meglino appears to be on-target to match and likely exceed his 2018 earnings at the table, which, according to our records, was his best earnings year since he began showing up in our database 12 years ago. He started 2019 out at the Derby City Classic where he cashed in five events; the One Pocket Mini (3rd), the 9-Ball Banks Mini (9th), One Pocket (10th), Banks (59th) and 9-Ball (65th). At a March 9-10 stop on the Sunshine State Pro Am Tour (#3), he went undefeated to claim his first 2019 event title. The $750-added event drew 64 entrants to Boulevard Billiards in Ocala, FL.
 
Meglino had to get by another Anthony, Fisher, twice to claim the title; once, in the hot seat and again, in the finals. Meglino’s route to the winners’ circle went through Robert Batson, David Singleton, and Kyle Bova, before running into Tommy Kennedy in a winners’ side quarterfinal. A double hill match eventually sent Kennedy to the loss side and Meglino on to face Marvin Llamas in a winners’ side semifinal. Fisher, in the meantime, who was looking for his first major event victory, got by Rich Rushton, Gary Hale, James Adams and Dan Waskom, to arrive at the other winners’ side semifinal match against Che Mrvos.
 
Identical 7-4 victories over Llamas and Mrvos moved Meglino and Fisher on to the hot seat match. Meglino claimed the hot seat 7-3 over Fisher and waited on his return.
 
On the loss side, Llamas picked up David Grossman, who’d been defeated in the opening round of play by Justin McNulty and was in the midst of a seven-match, loss-side winning streak that was about to come to an end. He’d most recently eliminated Dan Waskom and Steve Foster, both 5-3 to face Llamas. Mrvos drew Kennedy, who, following his defeat at the hands of Meglino, had defeated Les Duffy 5-2 and shut out Justin McNulty.
 
Mrvos ended Kennedy’s short, loss-side trip 5-2. Llamas joined him in the quarterfinals after a 5-1 victory over Grossman. Llamas took the quarterfinal match 5-3, but had his own modest loss-side streak ended by Fisher in the semifinals 5-2.
 
In their second of two, Meglino picked up the pace against Fisher, just a bit. He’d given up three in the hot seat match and reduced that to two in the finals. He claimed the event title 5-2 in a shortened-by-approaching-dawn (and clocks that moved forward an hour) final match at approximately 4:30 a.m.
 
The top junior finisher in the event was Trenton White (25th). The top lady finisher in the event was Michel Monk (17th).
 
Tour directors Janene Phillips and Bobby Garza thanked Don Kreischer and his Boulevard Billiards staff for their hospitality, as well as sponsors Predator Cues, Cyclop Balls, Kamui, Diamond Products, USAPL, AZBilliards and Stitch It To Me Embroidery, as well as the Live Stream provided by Cue Sports Studios. The next stop on the Sunshine State Pro Am Tour (#4), scheduled for the weekend of May 11-2, will be a $1,000-added event, hosted by Brewlands Bar and Billiards in North Lakeland, FL.

Rose goes undefeated to win his second 2019 Sunshine State Predator Pro Am Tour stop

Trenton White, Nathan Rose & Jason Richko

Nathan Rose took a major step toward making 2019 his best recorded earnings year ever by winning his second straight Sunshine State Predator Pro Am Tour stop on the weekend of January 2-3. In a month, he’s earned half of what he earned in all of his best earnings year to date, 2015. Rose went undefeated through a field of 64, on hand for the $1,500-added event, hosted by Brewlands Bar & Billiards in Tampa, FL.
 
Rose opened his undefeated run with a 7-4 victory over Eric Haggard, followed it with a 7-5 win over David Singleton, and then went on a run of four straight 7-2 wins that ended with him in the hot seat. He defeated Rollie Dixon and Ed Peterson to arrive at a winners’ side semifinal against Bill Bloom. Jason Richko, in the meantime, got by Rhyan Hunter, Kodi Allen, Brian Sudney and junior competitor, Trenton White (who’d come back to haunt Richko later) to arrive at the other winners’ side semifinal against Mitch Keiser.
 
Richko got into the hot seat match 7-5 over Keiser, as Rose was busy chalking up his third straight 7-2 win over Bloom. Rose won his fourth straight 7-2 match, over Richko, which left him in the hot seat, waiting on what turned out to be the return of Trenton White.
 
On the loss side, Bloom ran into White, who, following his defeat at the hands of Richko, had defeated Joseph Hughes 5-1 and Rollie Dixon 5-3. Keiser drew Kyle Bova, who was working on a four-match, loss-side winning streak that had most recently included wins over Ed Peterson 6-1 and Casey Spahr 6-3. White advanced to the quarterfinals 5-2 over Bloom and was met by Keiser, who’d survived a double hill battle against Bova.
 
White and Keiser locked up in a double hill quarterfinal, which eventually advanced White to a rematch versus Richko in the semifinals. White gave up only a single rack to Richko in those semifinals, advancing 5-1 to the finals against Rose.
 
Rose completed his undefeated run with a 9-5 victory over White, who, in addition to his 2nd place payout was awarded the ‘top-finishing junior’ title. Jeannie Seaver and Stephanie Mitchell finished in a tie for the top female finisher. 
 
Tour directors Janene Phillips and Bobby Garza thanked Larry Walthall and his Brewlands staff for their hospitality, as well as title sponsor Predator Cues, Cyclop Balls, Diamond, Kamui, Central Florida USA Pool League, Stitch it to Me Embrodiery and AZBilliards. Streaming was by Cue Sports Studios. The next stop on the Sunshine State Predator Pro Am Tour, scheduled for March 9, will be hosted by Boulevard Billiards in Ocala, FL.