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Busanich wins second straight on Garden State Pool Tour

Shawn Jackson, Rick Miller and Dinko Bushanich

When last we checked in on the pool life and times of one Dinko Busanich, he’d gone undefeated on the Garden State Pool Tour, winning his first (recorded) event in the New York City Tri-State area in eight years. Now, a month later, on Saturday, August 6, he’s chalked up his second regional area tour win; again, on the Garden State Pool Tour and again, going undefeated to claim the event title. The event drew 27 entrants to Rockaway Billiards in Rockaway, NJ.

This time, Busanich faced an opponent who was looking for his first regional tour win in five years, Shawn Jackson. Like Busanich, Jackson’s last win came on the Tri-State Tour, at a stop hosted by Amsterdam Billiards, and also like Busanich, Jackson went undefeated the last time he won. Not to be this time for Jackson, as he faced and was defeated twice by Busanich, on his way to a runner-up finish.

After being awarded a bye, Busanich opened up with a 7-5 victory over Juan Pena. He followed that with a win over Rick Miller 6-3, which put him into a winners’ side semifinal versus Rob Wetherhold III. Jackson, in the meantime, without a bye, defeated Nic Torraca 9-2, survived a double hill fight against Ilija Trajceski and sent James Conn to the loss side 6-1 to draw Paul Spaanstra in the other winners’ side semifinal.

Jackson gave up just a single rack to Spaanstra and advanced to the hot seat match. He was joined by Busanich, who’d defeated Wetherhold 7-3. With one ‘bead on the wire’ in a race to 7, Busanich downed Jackson in their first meeting 7-4.

On the loss side, Spaanstra picked up Rick Miller, who’d followed his loss to Busanich with victories over Kevin Rushing 10-2 and a shutout over Frank Rodriguez. Whetherhold drew Conn, who’d followed his loss to Jackson with the elimination of Raymund Paragas 7-1 and Deiby Calderon 10-3, which, as it happened, was a double hill win; Calderon, beginning the match with ‘six on the wire’ in the race to 10.

Conn sent Wetherhold home 8-3 and was joined in the quarterfinals by Miller, who’d defeated Spaanstra 7-5. Miller made it four, loss-side wins in a row with a double hill win over Conn in their straight-up race to 7 quarterfinal.

Miller, though, forfeited out of the semifinals, sending Jackson right back against Busanich, waiting for him in the hot seat. Jackson would have had to reach ‘7’ first to extend the race, but it didn’t happen. They went to double hill, which, with Busanich’s single ‘bead on the wire,’ was 5-6 (Busanich-Jackson). Busanich chalked up the final rack for the win.

Tour director Dave Fitzpatrick thanked the ownership and staff at Rockaway Billiards for their hospitality, as well as sponsors JFlowers Cues & Cases, InthBox, Off the Rail, John Bender Custom Cues, Kamui and Pool-A-Holic. The next stop on the Garden State Pool Tour, a BCD Class, 32-player maximum, 9-ball event, scheduled for Sunday, Aug. 28, will be hosted by Breaker Billiards in Clifton, NJ. 

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Cha double-dips Goberdhan to win 25th Predator Tri-State Invitational

John Leyman, Henry Cha, Dan Cintron, Jason Goberdhan and Todd Fleitman

Since he first began showing up on the tri-state New York area’s payout lists two years ago, Henry Cha has been making steady progress, earning a little more each year since then. He earned more in 2021 than he did in 2020 (which, full disclosure and thanks to Covid, pretty much everybody did) and now, midway through 2022, he’s already surpassed last year’s earnings. He won his first Predator Tri-State Tour stop in back in March and this past weekend, (June 25-26), he chalked up his second Predator Tri-State win, coming from the loss side to down Jason Goberdhan twice in the true double elimination final of the tour’s $3,800-added, 25th Invitational Tournament. The annual event, which signals the end of one tour season and the start of another (in this case, ‘20/’21 to ‘21/’22) drew 63 entrants to Steinway Billiards in Astoria (Queens), NY. 

Cha’s trip went through Lidio Ramirez, Raymond Lee and Julian Tierney to arrive at a winners’ side semifinal versus Mike Pruitt. Goberdhan, in the meantime, downed Nick Persaud, Jay Chiu, Nick Torraca and Anil Dhenraj to face Linda Cheung in the other winners’ side semifinal.

Cha got into the hot seat match with a 7-3 win over Pruitt and was joined by Goberdhan, who sent Cheung to the loss side, double hill. Goberdhan, looking for his first win on the tour since four days before Christmas last year, claimed the hot seat 7-5 in what would prove to be his last win of the weekend.

On the loss side, Jaydev Zaveri, who’d lost his second round, winners’ side match to Tierney and then got by Hunter Sullivan and Basdeo Sookhai in the first money round, got a second shot at Tierney. They battled to double hill before Zaveri advanced to defeat Frank Rodriguez, also double hill, and drew Mike Pruitt, just over from the winners’ side. Chueng arrived on the loss side to draw a rematch against KC Clayton, whom she’d defeated in a winners’ side quarterfinal and who’d gone on to defeat Marc Lamberti 6-4 and Anil Dhenraj 6-3.

Zaveri defeated Pruitt 7-4 and in the quarterfinals, faced Cheung, who’d eliminated Clayton, double hill. Zaveri ended Cheung’s run 9-7 in those quarterfinals. 

Zaveri’s run ended immediately thereafter. Cha defeated him 7-5 for a second and necessary third shot at Goberdhan in the hot seat. Cha took both sets of the true double elimination final 8-5 to claim the Predator Tri-State 25th Invitational Tournament. In addition to the prize money they earned, Cha took home a Predator Cue, while Goberdhan and Zaveri each were awarded a Poison Break Cue. 

Tour representatives thanked the ownership and staff at Steinway Billiards for their hospitality, as well as title sponsor Predator Cues, Ozone Billiards, Sterling-Gaming, Kamui Tips, Phil Capelle, Pool & Billiards, Professor Q Ball, Bender Cues, Paul Dayton Cues, Bloodworth Ball Cleaner, Joe Romer Trophies and Quick Slick. The next stop on the Predator Tri-State Tour scheduled for the Saturday, July 30, will be a $500-added, A-B-C-D 10-ball event, hosted by Clifton Billiards in Clifton, NJ. 

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