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Lechner’s Win over Van Boening Highlights International Open Day Three

Max Lechner

Wednesday morning at the International 9-Ball Open, began with a round from the one-loss side. Here, the winners stay in the tournament while the losers pack for home. Che-Wei Fu sent David Tickle home 11-5 while Roland Garcia rolled over Frankie Alvarez 11-1. Roberto Gomez defeated Raphael Debreo 11-6 and Naoyuki Oi won over Donny Mills 11-8.  Maxim Dudanets ruined the day for Johnny Archer 11-5 and Tommy Kennedy did the same for Jeremy Jones at 11-4. Albin Ouschan beat Matt Krah 11-3  while Niels Feijen danced over Dario Woodside 11-3. Finally, Billy Thorpe lost a close one to Ta Li Lin 11-9.
The next round was back on the winner’s side and featured Mika Immonen against Shane Van Boening. The famous SVB break wasn’t quite there today, but he still cleared Immonen 11-7. John Schmidt wasted no time in beating Bryan Farah 11-2 as Lee Van Corteza beat Chen-Yu Chang 11-3.
Max Eberle helped his Mosconi Cup hopes by putting down Skyler Woodward 11-6 and Thorsten Hohmann mowed the tall grass by besting Ko Pin-Yi 11-7. Another match worth noting was World #1 Joshua Filler taking down Ruslan Chinakhov 11-9. Filler has gained quite a fan base this week for his honor at the table. He called a foul on himself that no one else saw on Monday and then called himself on an illegal break yesterday. Two very close matches worth noting were Darren Appleton escaping from Kenny Cheng 11-9 while Denis Grade nipped David Alcaide 11-10.
Our third round of the day found Alex Pagulayan in form as he ran over Marco Teutscher 11-3. Ko Ping-Chung got by Kai Lin Hsu 11-9 and Jayson Shaw managed to catch a gear after he and Quac Hoang Duong were tied at 8 and Shaw took control to win 11-8. James Aranas had a great match where he destroyed defending champion Chang Jung-Lin 11-3 and Tommy Kennedy blasted Maxim Dudanets 11-5.
John Morra defeated Petri Makkonen 11-4 and Alex Kazakis continued his fine week taking off Fedor Gorst 11-7. Finally, Justin Martin just slid by Niels Feijen 11-10 and Dennis Orcollo edged Corey Duel 11-10 when Deuel hung the 5 in the corner on his way to clear the final rack.
There were only five matches on the one loss side at 6:30, and the feature match was Aloysius Yapp vs Ko Pin-Yi. Readers might want to remember the name of Aloysius Yapp. The Singapore native has had a great week here in Norfolk. First he beat the younger Ko brother Ko Ping-Han and then tonight on the TV table he had to take on the older Ko, one of the few players who can claim two World Championships in the same year. 
Yapp was not concerned though. He went out and played flawless pool and dominated Pin-Yi throughout the match. He took an early lead and just kept stretching it out farther and farther. In the end he was leading 10-5 when Ko tried to draw for position on the 9 ball and drew his rock into the corner pocket, giving Yapp ball-in-hand on the 9 for the 11-5 victory. Yes, Yapp should be a name in this game for years to come. 
In other matches, Ruslan Chinahov beat Lin Ta-Li 11-4 in a match that wasn’t even that close, and Roberto Gomez lost to Nick Ekonomolous. Gomez had a very vocal cheering section this week, but they had very little opportunity to make any noise as he quietly dropped his match to Ekonomopolous 11-4. 
The 8:30 round eliminated another thirteen players with Chris Melling, John Schmidt, Ralf Souquet, Tommy Kennedy, Petri Makkonen and US young gun Justin Martin all dropping matches. 
The final round of play on Wednesday featured four matches on the winner’s side. While last year’s runner-up Ko Ping-Chung was beating BCA Hall of Famer Alex Pagulayan on the feature table, Austria’s Max Lechner and Shane Van Boening were putting on a show on one of the outer tables. Lechner had already gotten the attention of the crowd in Norfolk with his 11-4 opening match win over Skyler Woodward. The fan’s hadn’t seen anything yet though. Lechner held an early 2-0 lead over Van Boening when he ran six straight racks for an 8-0 lead. He extended that lead to 9-0, before Shane started doing what he does. Van Boening started creeping back into the match and although Lechner had opportunities at the table, he wasn’t able to capitalize on them. Nine racks later, the score was tied at 9-9 and every eyeball in the room was glued to this match. Van Boening took the hill first at 10-9, but Lechner dug down deep and took control of his nerves to tie the score at 10-10 with him breaking. The break turned out to be very important as Lechner broke the balls and watched along with the standing room only crowd as the 9-ball made a beeline to the corner pocket, giving Lechner the 11-10 win. 
Lechner now joins Ko, Dennis Orcollo and Jayson Shaw in the final eight on the winner’s side. The other four players in that round will be determined Thursday morning. 

Aranas comes back from semifinals to down Woodward and win Beasley Custom Cues 9-Ball Open

James Aranas

The finals of the 2019 Beasley Custom Cues 9-Ball Open, held on the first weekend of June, was a rematch between the two finalists at the late January/early February 9-Ball division of the Derby City Classic in Indiana – the USA’s Skyler Woodward and Zoren “James” Aranas from the Philippines. At that earlier event, Woodward more or less swept the table (pun intended), winning not only the 9-Ball event (in which Aranas was runner-up) and the Bank Pool Ring Game, but he was the Classic’s Master of the Table winner, as well. Aranas came to the Beasley 9-Ball Open with a few impressive items on his 2019 resume, as well, including the runner-up finish in Indiana, a victory at the Pro Players Championship of the Super Billiards Expo in April, a victory at the Barry Behrmann Memorial and most recently, a 3rd place finish at the 9th Annual George “Ginky” Sansouci Memorial on Memorial Day weekend. That 3rd place finish necessitated the combined talents of Alex Kazakis in the hot seat match and Jayson Shaw in the semifinals to eliminate Aranas.

On the weekend of May 30-June 2, Aranas fell to Woodward in the hot seat match, but came back from the semifinals to defeat him twice and claim the Beasley Custom Cues 9-Ball Open title. Though more were expected and no one could argue with the overall quality of the field, the $10,000-added event drew 66 entrants to Brass Tap & Billiards in Raleigh, NC.

Aranas had much the rougher road on his way to the hot seat match against Woodward. Case in point: his opening round match against fellow countryman Dennis Orcollo, which went double hill before Aranas prevailed. He followed up with wins over David Tickle 9-4, and a somewhat surprising shutout over Dmitris Loukatos (who, like Aranas, had been knocked out of the Ginky Memorial by Jayson Shaw). In a winners’ side quarterfinal, Aranas defeated Brad Shearer 9-7 to draw (as if things weren’t tough enough) Francisco Bustamante in a winners’ side semifinal.

While pool does indeed operate with an “any given Sunday” kind of rule, meaning that at the highest levels of competition, almost anyone can be competitive and upset a generally stronger opponent, Woodward’s path to the hot seat match was, on paper at least, considerably less hazardous, and as the scores demonstrate, handled as might have been expected. He opened with a 9-1 victory over Michael Yingling, and followed with victories over Donald Williams 9-3, and Andrew Bruce 9-1, before running into arguably his toughest opponent to that point in a winners’ side quarterfinal – Omar Alshaheen. Again, the score told the story. Woodward prevailed 9-6 to draw Keith Bennett in the other winners’ side semifinal.

As Aranas was busy defeating 784-Fargo-rated Bustamante 9-4, Woodward appeared to be a little less busy, handing the 566-Fargo-rated Keith Bennett a shutout (an uncharacteristic match for Bennett). Going into the hot seat match, Woodward had won 80% of the games he’d played (45-11). Aranas, on the other hand, won 45 of his 68 games for a 66% winning percentage. Their averages both went down at the end of the hot seat match. Woodward, sporting the lower Fargo Rate (788) downed the higher Fargo-rated Aranas (803) 9-4 to claim the hot seat.

Over on the loss side, while there were quite a few recognizable names still standing as the bracket came down to its final eight, there were a few names missing, as well. Among them were Alex Kazakis, who lost to countryman Dmitris Loukatos to finish in the tie for 13th place. Home town (Raleigh, NC) favorite, 14-year-old Joey Tate, who is the reigning 14-and-under Junior National Champion got knocked out of the running by Dennis Orcollo and finished in the tie for 17th. Tony Chohan was missing at the end, as well, having been defeated on the winners’ side of the bracket by Mike Davis and falling in his second loss-side match to Orcollo.

Coming off the winners’ side semifinal, Keith Bennett picked up Mike Davis, who’d eliminated Brad Shearer 7-2 and Brandon Shuff 7-5 to reach him. Bustamante drew Omar Alshaheen, who’d finished Orcollo’s weekend 7-4 and eliminated Roberto Gomez 7-5.

“Busty” and Alshaheen fought a predictable double hill match before “Busty” prevailed to advance to the quarterfinals. Davis joined him after winning his fifth loss-side match, a 7-4 win over Bennett.

Bustamante made short work of Davis, eliminating him 7-3 in those quarterfinals. Aranas, though, very much ‘in stroke’ at this point, defeated Bustamante 7-4 in the semifinals and earned his re-match against Woodward in the hot seat.

Aranas dropped his overall winning percentage to 59% in the finals. He did so by defeating Woodward 13-10 to capture the 2019 Beasley Custom Cues 9-Ball Open title.

Tour director Jon Brown thanked the ownership and staff at Brass Tap & Billiards, as well as title sponsor Beasley Custom Cues, Simonis Cloth, JB Cases, Aramith, and Outsville Accu-Rack. Selected matches of the event were live streamed throughout the weekend by Ray “Big Truck” Hansen and his PoolActionTV staff.

Tickle and Potts split prizes on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour

(l to r): David Tickle & Jason Potts

Though Tickle and Potts may sound like characters in a Disney movie, they are, in fact, two veterans of the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour. David Tickle, who was runner-up to Jason Evans at a stop in February, has been away from the tables for a while; his best recorded earnings year being 2015, when he won two stops on the tour and finished 4th and 5th in two others. While still looking for his first win on the tour, Jason Potts did finish 4th in the 2018 Tour Championships and was runner-up to Taz Holliday in the tour’s 2017 Bar Box Championships.
Though scheduled to meet twice, they met only once during the May 4-5 stop on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour, which drew 40 entrants to Gate City Billiards Club in Greensboro, NC. They both advanced to the winners’ side semifinals, where Tickle met and defeated Michael Wyatt 9-2, and Potts sent Alex Valencia to the loss side 7-3. In what proved to be the one and only match between the two, Tickle claimed the hot seat 9-4.
On the loss side, Wyatt and Valencia landed in the first money round of the event. Valencia picked up Brian Overman, who’d defeated Daniel Jones 7-3 and Brian Francis 7-5 to reach him. Of particular interest to Tickle watching from the hot seat was Wyatt’s first opponent on the loss side, Jeff Abernathy, who’d been sent to the loss side by Tickle in the third round and was in the midst of a six-match, loss-side winning streak. He’d most recently defeated Tim Nelson 9-2 and Jason Evans 9-7.
 Abernathy leap-frogged into the quarterfinals when Wyatt was unable to show up for his Sunday match. He was joined by Valencia, who’d eliminated Overman 6-3.
Abernathy gave up only a single rack to Valencia in those quarterfinals and was a single match away from a re-match against Tickle in the hot seat. With Abernathy racing to 9, though, Potts put up a fight and won the semifinal match 7-7. Potts and Tickle opted out of the final, leaving Tickle, as hot seat occupant, the official winner.
Tour directors Herman and Angela Parker thanked the ownership and staff at Gate City Billiards Club, as well as title sponsor Viking Cues, Bar Pool Tables, Delta 13 Racks, AZ Billiards and Professor Q-Ball. The next stop on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour, scheduled for this weekend (May 11-12), will be a $1,000-added event, hosted by Steakhorse Restaurant & Billiards in Spartanburg, SC. 

Evans wins two final double hill matches to go undefeated on Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour

Jason Evans

If, at first, you don’t succeed. . .
Jason Evans (entrant #172 in our database of nearly 20,000 pool players) had been bringing home cash from pool tournaments for almost 20 years, but according to our records (containing information only on events reported to us), had yet to win a major tournament. Until this past weekend, February 16-17, when he went undefeated through a field of 41 on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour. Evans and David Tickle battled twice in this event, hosted by Gate City Billiards Club in Greensboro, NC. Both matches, for the hot seat and finals, in straight-up races to 9, went double hill.
Their first meetup followed Tickle’s defeat of Shaun Apple 9-2 in one of the winners’ side semifinals and Evans’ 9-1 victory over Brad Smith in the other one. Evans took the first of his two double hill wins over Tickle and claimed (again, according to available records) his first hot seat.
On the loss side, Apple picked up Jerry Stone, who’d defeated Scott Johnson 6-5 (Johnson racing to 7) and Michael Moore 6-4. Smith drew Gate City Billiards Club owner, Don Liebes, who’d recently defeated Harry Florence, double hill, and Geoff Grayson 6-3.
Apple and Smith advanced to the quarterfinals; Apple 5-4 over Stone (racing to 6) and Smith, by shutout, over Liebes. Smith gave up only a single rack to Apple to take the quarterfinal match 6-1.
Tickle gave up only two to Smith in the semifinals to earn his rematch against Evans in the finals. A second double hill match ensued, with the same result. Evans claimed his first major title.
Tour directors Herman and Angela Parker thanked Don Liebes and his Gate City Billiards Club staff for their hospitality, as well as title sponsor Viking Cues, Bar Pool Tables, Delta 13 Racks, AZ Billiards and Professor Q-Ball. The next stop on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour, scheduled for this weekend (Feb. 23-24), will be dedicated to the memory of tour veteran Chris Walsh, who passed away recently. The event is expected to be the first Chris Walsh Memorial of many to come. The event will be hosted by Walsh’s home room, Randolph Billiards in Hickory, NC, where he won a stop on the tour in February 2017. Money will be raised at this event in support of Walsh’s family.

Fowler wins second of true double final to claim his first Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball title

On the weekend of August 20-21 on the Viking Cues' Q City 9-Ball Tour, it was a 'two out of three' battle of the Billys; Fowler and Carroll. Billy Fowler made it to the hot seat, lost the first match of the true double elimination finals to Billy Carroll, and took the second to claim the title. The $500-added event drew 48 entrants to Cue Time in Spartanburg, SC.
Billys Fowler and Carroll almost faced off in the hot seat match. Fowler defeated David Tickle 7-5 in one winners' side semifinal, but Scott Ward sent Carroll to the loss side 7-5 in the other one. Fowler claimed the hot seat 7-5 and waited on Carroll's return.
On the loss side, Carroll picked up 16-year-old Hunter White, who'd defeated Taz Holliday 8-5 and long-time veteran player and renowned cue maker Mike Gulyassy, double hill. Tickle drew Dayne Miller, who'd gotten by J.R. Poste and Jason Blackwell, both 6-3.
Carroll and Miller advanced to the quarterfinals with six racks each over White and Tickle,  who were both racing to 8. Carroll downed White 6-6, while Miller eliminated Tickle 6-5. Carroll took the quarterfinal match 6-2, ending a seven-match, loss-side winning streak by Miller, who'd been defeated in the opening round of play.
Carroll moved on and denied Ward a second crack at Fowler by defeating him in the semifinals 6-4. Carroll parlayed a bit of that semifinal momentum into the opening set of the true double elimination final to win that by the same score. Fowler, though, came back in the second set, and gave up only two racks in claiming his first Viking Cues' Q City 9-Ball title.
Tour director Herman Parker thanked the ownership and staff at Cue Time, as well as title sponsor Viking Cues, Delta-13 racks, and Ruthless Billiards Apparel. The next stop on the Viking Cues' Q City 9-Ball Tour, scheduled for August 27-28, will be hosted by Smokin' Cue in  Charlotte, NC. 

Williams takes two out of three versus Cloud to win stop on Q City 9-Ball Tour

Clear dominance in the hot seat match for William Cloud turned into relative dominance for Josh Williams in a two-set final that earned him the event title. The occasion was the August 13-14 stop on the Q City 9-Ball Tour, which drew 36 entrants to the Gate City Billiards Club in Greensboro, NC.
Cloud sent Mike McPherson to the loss side 8-4 in one winners' side semifinal, as Williams sent Jonathan Ailstock over 5-3 in the other one. In the hot seat match, Cloud gave up only two racks to Williams (racing to 5), which proved to be his last winning set.
On the loss side, McPherson picked up Brad Barton, who'd defeated Chad Weachter 6-3, and David Tickle, double hill, to reach him. Ailstock drew Gate City Billiards owner Don Liebes, who'd eliminated John Sanders 5-4 (Sanders racing to 8), and Anthony Mabe 5-5 (Mabe racing to 7).
McPherson gave up a single rack to Barton and advanced to the quarterfinals. Liebes joined him after defeating Ailstock 5-4 (Ailstock racing to 6). A second straight 7-1 set for McPherson put him a single match away from a re-match versus Cloud. Williams spoiled that party in the semifinals with a 5-3 win that gave him the re-match against Cloud.
The total game score over the two-set final was Williams 10, and Cloud 9. Williams took the opening set 5-4, and then, allowed Cloud one more rack, before chalking up the second set 5-5 and claiming the event title.
Tour director Herman Parker thanked Don Liebes and his staff at the Gateway Billiard Club, as well as title sponsor Viking Cues, Delta-13 racks, and Ruthless Billiards Apparel. The next stop on the Q City 9-Ball Tour, scheduled for August 20-21, will be a $500-added event, hosted by Cue Time in Spartanburg, SC.

Tickle and Blackburn split top prizes in a Q City 9-Ball stop

David Tickle and James Blackburn allowed the single match that they played against each other to stand as the result of a Q City 9-Ball Tour stop, on November 14. The two opted out of playing a final, leaving Tickle, in the hot seat, as the winner of the event that drew 38 entrants to the Gate City Billiard Club in Raleigh, NC.
Tickle had sent Dylan Letchworth to the loss side 8-2 in a winners' side semifinal, while Blackburn was busy sending 13-year-old Peter Abantangelo over 8-3. Tickle claimed the hot seat 8-4 over Blackburn.
On the loss side, Letchworth picked up George Crawford, who'd gotten by Colin Hall 8-3 and Bobby Clinton 8-1. Abantangelo drew Jay Calhoun (husband to Belinda Calhoun), who'd defeated Zach Leonard 6-5 and Josh Williams 6-2. Crawford and Calhoun handed Letchworth and Abatangelo their second straight loss. Letchworth forfeited his match, while Calhoun downed Abantangelo 6-3.
With Crawford racing to 8, Calhoun took the quarterfinal 6-5. Blackburn ended Calhoun's run 8-4 in the semifinals. At this juncture, Tickle and Blackburn opted out of the final match and split the top two prizes.
The next stop on the Q City 9-Ball Tour, scheduled for Saturday, November 21, will be hosted by Buck's Billiards in Raleigh, NC.

Hollinsworth and Tickle claim double header titles on Q City 9-Ball Tour

The Q City 9-Ball Tour held a double header weekend; commencing with a Saturday, September 19 event that drew 59 entrants, and concluding with a $300-added event that drew 37, which actually began on Saturday night and finished up on Sunday, September 20. Neither event saw a final match, as all four competitors opted out of a final and split the money. The top prize in both events included qualification for a North Carolina 8-ball Championship, scheduled for November. The events were hosted by Chandler's Chalk and Cue in Statesville, NC. 
Ryan Hollinsworth went undefeated in the Saturday opener, and finished in the tie for fifth in the Sunday event. David Tickle, who finished in fourth place on Saturday, was defeated in the hot seat match of Sunday's event, and returned from the semifinals to face Colin Hall. The match didn't occur. Tickle and Hall split the top two prizes, and while the undefeated Hall would normally have been declared the winner, Hall deferred to give Tickle the qualification prize to November's 8-Ball championship.
On Saturday, Hollinsworth  advanced to a winners' side semifinal against Matt Shaw, while Terry Ringgold met up with Scott Lewis. With Lewis racing to 10, Ringgold defeated Lewis 4-7, as Hollinsworth was downing Shaw 7-4. Hollinsworth claimed the hot seat, and for all intents and purposes, the event title with his 7-3 win over Ringgold.
Lewis and Shaw moved to the loss side and were immediately handed their second straight loss. Lewis fell to David Tickle 8-7. Shaw ran into Brian Bryant, whom he'd sent to the loss side in an earlier round. Bryant faced and defeated Shaw 8-3 while in the midst of a seven-match, loss-side run that would propel him into the finals. Bryant moved on to defeat Tickle 8-4 in the quarterfinals and punctuated what proved to be his final match by shutting out Ringgold in the semifinals. He and Hollinsworth opted out of the final and split $1,330.
On Sunday, Colin Hall and Tickle would have met twice had they opted to play a final match, but they met only once, in the battle for the hot seat. Hall had sent Johnny Walker to the loss side 6-5, as Tickle was defeating Hollinsworth 8-5. Hall claimed the hot seat with a 6-2 win over Tickle.
Like Shaw and Lewis in Saturday's event, Walker and Hollinsworth moved to the loss side and were immediately defeated for the second straight time; Walker, 8-3, by Mike Bumgarner, and Hollinsworth 6-3 by Jamie Fells. Fells eliminated Bumgarner 6-4 in the quarterfinals, but was himself eliminated 8-4 by Tickle in the semifinals. Tickle and Hall split the top two prizes, amounting to $880.
The next stop on the Q City 9-Ball Tour, scheduled for Saturday, September 26, will be hosted by Breaktime Billiards in Winston-Salem, NC. 

Frank double dips Clinton to win 4th of July weekend stop on Q City 9-Ball Tour

Trey Frank took two out of three matches against Bobby Clinton to win a July 4th weekend stop on the Q City 9-Ball Tour. The handicapped, 9-ball event drew 38 entrants to the Gate City Billiard Club in Greensboro, NC.
They met first in the battle for the hot seat. Frank had defeated Norris Brady 6-9 (Brady racing to 11), as Clinton was sending Brent Kyles to the loss side 7-3. Clinton took the first of three against Frank 7-3 and waited in the hot seat for him to get back.
On the loss side, Norris Brady ran into David Tickle, who'd defeated Scott Largen 8-2 and Austin Sawyer 8-4 to reach him. Kyles drew Jerry Varnado, recent winner over Mike Davis 8-10 (Davis racing to 13), and Mike Bumgarner 8-5. Brady and Kyles advanced to the quarterfinals; Brady 11-6 over Tickle and Kyles 8-4 over Varnado.
Brady then eliminated Kyles 11-4 for a second shot at Frank in the semifinals. Frank stepped up his game in his second meeting versus Brady, allowing him only five racks of the 11 he would have needed to win, while scoring six to earn himself a second, and, as it turned out, third shot against Clinton in the hot seat.
Frank downed Clinton in both sets of the true double elimination final. Both times, they battled to double hill, which, with Frank racing to 6 and Clinton racing to 7, was a deadlock at 5-6. Frank closed it out 6-6 both times to claim the event title.