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Tate and Ringgold split top prizes on Q City 9-Ball Tour

Joey Tate

Stay tuned, but like a lot of pool tours staring at the spectre of empty-by-government-order bars and/or pool rooms, last weekend’s (March 14) Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour stop may have been its last for a while. The industry, nation-wide, functions on its ability to gather players together for tournaments big and small and with the numbers of what are being called allowable safe groups declining and currently hovering in the 10 or less area, pool tournaments are in serious jeopardy.

At this most recent tournament, junior player Joey Tate (15) and veteran competitor, JT Ringgold battled only once, in a winners’ side semifinal. Tate won that match and though Ringgold won three on the loss side to earn the right to a rematch, they opted out of it. As the undefeated occupant of the hot seat, Tate claimed the event title. The event drew 23 entrants to Mickey Milligan’s in New Bern, NC.

As Ringgold and Tate battled what proved to be the title match in their winners’ side semifinals, Michael Thompson and Ron Sellers battled in the other one. Tate sent Ringgold to the loss side 7-8 (Ringgold racing to 11). Thompson joined Tate in the hot seat match after defeating Sellers 7-3. Tate claimed the hot seat and in effect, the event title 7-5 over Thompson.

On the loss side, Ringgold picked up Ricky Acevedo, who’d defeated Jack Whitfield and Joshua Shultz, both 5-2. Sellers drew Kelly Farrar, who’d recently eliminated Jason Futrell 7-2 and Reene Driskill 7-1.

Ringgold downed Acevedo 11-3 and was joined in the quarterfinals by Sellers, who’d defeated Farrar 5-4 (Farrar racing to 7). Ringgold, picking up some speed in this loss-side campaign shut Sellers out in those quarterfinals.

Thompson applied the brakes to Ringgold’s momentum with a double hill battle in the semifinals. Ringgold won it, though, 11-6 for a second shot against Tate in the hot seat; a shot he didn’t take. He and Tate opted out of the final, split the money and went home.

Tour directors Herman and Angela Parker thanked the ownership and staff at Mickey Milligan’s for their hospitality, as well as title sponsor Viking Cues, Bar Pool Tables, Delta 13 Racks, AZBilliards, and Tickler Pool Ball Washing Machine. The next stop on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour is, well . . . up in the air at this point. The Parkers maintain a presence on Facebook, which can be monitored for ongoing information.

Cooke goes undefeated to win first major regional on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour

Thomas Cooke

Thomas Cooke dodged a few major ‘bullets’ and came back from a hot-seat loss to double dip a junior player in the finals of the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour stop at Mickey Milligan’s in New Bern, NC on the weekend of Sept. 28-29. It was, at least as far as our records indicate, not only Cooke’s first victory on the tour, but his first cash payout at any major event anywhere. The $500-added event drew 20 entrants to Mickey Milligan’s.
 
Among the ‘bullets’ he dodged (did not play) were tour regulars BJ Ussery, Barry Mashburn and Anthony Mabe. Junior competitor and runner-up Josh Shultz was unable to dodge two ‘bullets,’  but fired back and on the winners’ side of the bracket, defeated both Ussery and JT Ringgold (the tour’s most prolific event winner), who, together on the loss side of the bracket, advanced to a marquee matchup in the quarterfinals. Ringgold had his six-match, loss-side streak ended by Cooke in the semifinals.
 
With the tour’s ‘heavy hitters’ already at work on the loss side, Cooke and Shultz advanced to the winners’ side semifinals; Cooke facing Jack Whitfield and Shultz meeting David Givens. Cooke battled Whitfield to a deciding 11th game in their double hill match, before advancing to the hot seat match. Shultz downed Givens 6-2. Shultz took the first of his three versus Cooke 6-3 and waited in the hot seat for him to return.
 
Over on the loss side, Ussery and Ringgold were waiting for Whitfield and Givens, respectively. Ringgold had most recently defeated Reene Driskill and Barry Mashburn, both 11-3, to draw Givens. Ussery had shut out Anthony Mabe and defeated Gerry Shepherd 12-2 to face Whitfield.
 
Ussery and Ringgold advanced to the marquee quarterfinals; Ringgold 11-4 over Givens and Ussery, 12-4 over Whitfield. Ussery was a little ‘off,’ apparently, and when they returned the following day to play that quarterfinal match, Ringgold won it 11-4.
 
Ringgold was apparently not at the top of his game, either, as, racing to 11, he fell 5-5 to Cooke in the semifinals. With Shultz racing to 6 in the finals, Cooke took the opening set 5-4 and won the second set 5-3 to claim the event title.
 
Tour directors Herman and Angela Parker thanked the ownership and staff at Mickey Milligan’s 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 (October 5-6), will be a $1,000-added event, hosted by The Clubhouse in Lynchburg, VA.
 
The Tour is heading into a busy part of its schedule, with a number of high profile events between now and Christmas, beginning with its (9-ft table) Tour Championships on October 26 at Randolph’s Billiards in Hickory, NC. The bar table Tour Championships will be held December 19 at Break & Run Billiards in Chesnee, SC.
 
The month of November will be particularly busy with the tour’s first One Pocket invitational tournament, which has already been sold out. Scheduled for November 16-17, the event will be hosted by Speakeazy Billiards in Sandford, NC. A week later, at the same location, the tour will host the NC State 10-Ball Open, sponsored in part by Doug Beasley Custom Cues. A Scotch Doubles Tournament, scheduled for Thanksgiving Day weekend (Nov. 30-Dec.1) will be hosted by Break & Run Billiards in Chesnee, SC. Tour patrons should monitor the tour’s Facebook pages for further information about these and upcoming tournaments.
 

Chasing dawn, Martin and Whitfield split top prizes on Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour

Justin Martin

With a little less than half of the field still in play, the Saturday, August 3 stop on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour featured a large number of its better players, as defined by their tour ratings. Justin Martin, who races to 10 in his matches, was among the event’s final 12 and went on to win the event, undefeated*. Also present among the final 12 were BJ Ussery (racing to 12 in his matches) and JT Ringgold (racing to 11). The $250-added event drew 29 entrants to Mickey Milligan’s Billiards in New Bern, NC.
 
Martin was to have faced Jack Whitfield twice in this one, but did so only once. Martin got into the hot seat match following a 10-5 victory over Danny Farren in one of the winners’ side semifinals. Whitfield joined him after a 7-5 win over Junior Avery in the other one. In what proved to be the title match, battling for the hot seat, Martin gave up only a single rack, downing Whitfield 10-1.
 
Farren and Avery moved to the loss side of the bracket and faced Ringgold and Travis Guerra, respectively, for advancement to the first money round. Ringgold eliminated Farren 11-6, as Guerra downed Avery 6-4.
 
The first money round match, the quarterfinals, came within a game of going double hill. It was Ringgold who fell a rack short of forcing a deciding game, and Guerra advanced 6-9.
 
In what proved to be the event’s final match, Whitfield earned a second shot at Martin in the hot seat with a 7-4 victory over Guerra. The final match did not occur. It was 6 a.m. on Sunday morning and Martin and Whitfield opted out, leaving the undefeatEd Martin as the event’s official winner.
 
Tour directors Herman and Angela Parker thanked the ownership and staff at Micky Milligan’s 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 (August 10-11), will be hosted by a new venue for the tour, Shore Thing Billiards in Myrtle Beach, SC.  

Leonard and McGinn split top prizes on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour

Zac Leonard

Fresh off his best earnings year, to date (2018), Zac Leonard, who was the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour’s Points Champion last year, opened his 2019 campaign with an undefeated tour victory. Leonard won two stops on the 2018 tour, was runner-up twice, and cashed in eight events. At this most recent $250-added event, held on Saturday, January 19, he advanced, undefeated, to the hot seat and just as dawn was starting to creep up onto the Sunday, January 20th horizon (4 a.m.), he agreed to a split of the top two cash prizes with runner-up Raymond McGinn. The event drew 31 entrants to Mickey Milligan’s in New Bern, NC.
 
Leonard and McGinn met twice in this one; the first time in a winners’ side semifinal and again, when they opted out of playing, in the finals. While Leonard and McGinn were playing their match, Billie Spatafora and Jack Whitfield squared off in the other winners’ side semifinal.
 
Leonard got into the hot seat match with a 7-3 win over McGinn. He was met by Spatafora, who’d defeated Whitfield 5-5 (Whitfield racing to 7). Leonard gave up only a single rack to Spatafora, sending him to the loss side 7-1 in what would prove to be his (Leonard’s) final match.
 
On the loss side, McGinn picked up Jorge Ramos, who’d defeated John McColl 7-4 and Chad Weachter, double hill (7-5) to reach him. Whitfield drew Chris McSorley, who’d eliminated Chris Rhoades 6-4 and Sydney Champion 6-5 (Champion racing to 8). Raymond McGinn got into the quarterfinals with a 6-2 win over Ramos. He was joined by Whitfield, who benefited from a forfeit by McSorley.
 
McGinn downed Whitfield in those quarterfinals and advanced to defeat Spatafora in the semifinals, both by the same 6-2 score. The decision was made to not play a final match, the top two prizes were split and everybody went home.
 
Tour directors Herman and Angela Parker thanked the ownership and staff at Mickey Milligan’s, 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 (Jan. 26-27), will be hosted Borderline Billiards in Bristol, TN.

Lucky 13 – Ringgold double dips Faulk to win 13th Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball title

JT Ringgold

JT Ringgold lost an opening round match on the most recent Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour stop, won seven on the loss side and then, double-dipped hot seat occupant, Larry Faulk to claim his 13th overall title on the tour. Racing to 10 in all of the matches, his loss-side run involved 90 games, and he lost only 16 of them. The next time he competes, said tour director Herman Parker, he’ll be racing to 11. The $250-added event, held on Saturday, Oct. 20, drew 18 entrants to Mickey Milligan’s in New Bern, NC.
 
With Ringgold at work on the loss side, Faulk advanced to a winners’ side semifinal matchup against Mickey Milligan’s owner, Gerry Shepherd. Robert Perez and Graham Swinson battled in the other winners’ side semifinal. Faulk shut out Shepherd 7-0, as Perez and Swinson locked up in a double hill fight that eventually advanced Perez to the hot seat match against Faulk. Faulk claimed the hot seat, and as it turned out, his final match victory with a 7-4 win over Perez.
 
Ringgold, in the meantime, was slicing through the loss side field, and after chalking up wins #3 and #4 against Paul Swinson (father to Graham; 10-3) and Scotty Johnson 10-1, he drew Shepherd. The younger Swinson picked up Jack Whitfield, who’d defeated Jeff Matthews 7-4 and Wayne Miller 7-3 to reach him.
 
Ringgold added win #5 against Shepherd 10-2 and in the quarterfinals, faced Whitfield, who’d eliminated Swinson 7-5. According to TD Parker, Ringgold, in spite of the event’s alternate break format, didn’t miss a ball in his shutout over Whitfield in the quarterfinals. He gave up three racks to Perez in his 10-3 semifinal win.
 
With Faulk racing to 7, Ringgold had to beat him twice to claim the title, and did so, easily. He gave up only three racks in 23 games (10-2, 10-1) to claim this 13th Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball title.
 
Tour directors Herman and Angela Parker thanked Gerry Shepherd and his Mickey Milligan’s 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 (Oct. 27-28) will be a $500-added event (with a full field of 48 entrants) hosted by Randolph Billiards in Hickory, NC.

Owens and Leonard split top prizes on Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour

Frank Owens

In terms of attendance, the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour stop on the weekend of April 14-15, was likely affected by the concurrent Super Billiards Expo (SBE) in Philadelphia. Mickey Milligan’s in New Bern, NC is about eight hours away from the SBE site, which drew over a thousand entrants to its Amateur tournament, many of them residing within an eight-hour travel distance. The winner of the SBE’s Pro Player Championships (Mike Dechaine) drove six hours to compete. The $250-added Q City 9-Ball stop drew 21 entrants and came to an end when Frank Owens and Zach Leonard opted out of a final match, which would have been their second, and split the top two prizes.
 
They met first in the hot seat match. Owens had sent Matt Lucas to the loss side, double hill, in one winners’ side semifinal, while Leonard downed Richard Limo 7-3 in the other one. With Leonard racing to 7, Owens claimed the hot seat 5-4.
 
On the loss side, Lucas and Limo ran right into their second straight loss. Lucas picked up Jack Whitfield, who’d shutout C.B. Brown, and defeated Cody Jones 7-4 to reach him. Limo had the misfortune of meeting up with the tour’s most prolific winner, J.T. Ringgold, who, after being awarded an opening round bye, had dropped his first match to Bill Duggan, and was in the midst of a six-match, loss-side winning streak that would take him as far as the semifinals. He’d gotten by Chris Gentile 10-5 and shut out Wayne Miller to draw Limo.
 
Ringgold downed Limo 10-4, and in the quarterfinals, faced Whitfield, who’d defeated Lucas 7-2. Ringgold then ended Whitfield’s run 10-3, before coming up against Leonard in the semifinals. With Ringgold racing to 10, he and Leonard fought back and forth to double hill (6-9), before Leonard dropped the deciding 9-ball to earn a second shot against Owens.
 
That second shot did not materialize. Owens and Leonard opted out of the final match, with Owens, in the hot seat, claiming the official event title.
 
Tour directors Herman and Angela Parker thanked the ownership and staff at Mickey Milligan’s, as well as title sponsor Viking Cues, Delta 13 Racks, AZBilliards and Professor Q Ball. The next stop on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour, scheduled for April 21-22, will be hosted by Gate City Billiards Club, in Greensboro, NC.

Ringgold goes undefeated to win his sixth Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour stop

JT Ringgold

With his sixth win on the tour, this past weekend (July 8-9), J.T. Ringgold stands as the top competitor on the Viking Cues' Q City 9-Ball Tour. He's played in more matches, chalked up more wins and pocketed more money on the tour than any other player. The $250-added event drew 33 entrants to Mickey Milligan's in New Bern, NC.
 
Ringgold faced separate opponents in the hot seat and finals of this event. He got into the hot seat match after a double hill (10-7) win over Larry Faulk, and faced Jack Whitfield, who'd sent Ringgold's eventual finals opponent, David Williams to the loss side 7-3. Ringgold claimed the hot seat 10-5 over Whitfield and waited on the return of Williams.
 
Williams opened his loss-side trip to the finals against Ringgold's father, Terry Ringgold, who'd defeated Wayne Miller and Al Boone, both 5-3, to reach him. Faulk drew Greg Smith, who'd eliminated Wayne Sutton 9-5 and Justin Clark 9-4.
 
It was Williams and Faulk who advanced to the quarterfinal match; Williams 5-3 over the elder Ringgold, and Faulk 8-3 over Greg Smith. Williams, at this point, playing well above his handicap, downed Faulk (racing to 8) 5-3, and then, with Whitfield racing to 7, downed him in the semifinals 5-5.
 
Ringgold put an exclamation point on his sixth Viking Cues' Q City 9-Ball Tour win. He chalked up his requisite 10 games without giving up a single rack to Williams.
 
Tour director Herman Parker thanked the ownership and staff at Mickey Milligan's, as well as title sponsor Viking Cues, Delta 13 Racks, AZBilliards and Professor Q Ball. The next stop on the Viking Cues' Q City 9-Ball Tour, scheduled for July 15-16, will be a $500-added event, hosted by Q Master Billiards in Virginia Beach, VA.
 

Father and son battle it out on the Q City 9-Ball Tour

Terry and J.T. Ringgold, father and son respectively, battled twice to claim the title at a Q City 9-Ball Tour on the weekend of June 25-26. The son won both matches at the $250-added event that drew 18 entrants to Mickey Milligan's in New Bern, NC.
 
They met first in the hot seat match. Terry had defeated Danny Farren 4-5 (Farren racing to 7) as J.T. sent Randy Hodges to the loss side 9-4. J.T. showed no mercy in the subsequent battle for the hot seat. He shut his father out, and waited on his return.
 
On the loss side, Danny Farren picked up Frank Owens, who'd defeated Montez Lloyd and Brad Burton, both 5-3, to reach him. Hodges drew Josh Heeter, who'd eliminated Zach Cortright 7-3 and Jack Whitfield, 7-4. Heeter and Owens advanced to the quarterfinals, handing Hodges and Farren their second straight defeat; Heeter 7-4 over Hodges and Owens 5-3 over Farren.
 
Heeter took the quarterfinal match over Owens 7-3, but had his loss-side streak ended by the elder Ringgold 4-3 in the semifinals. The father put up a bit of fight in the second match against his son, chalking up two racks. J.T. chalked up his nine to claim the title.
 
Tour director Herman Parker thanked Gerry Shepherd and his staff at Mickey Milligans for their hospitality, as well as sponsors Viking Cues, and Delta-13 racks. The next stop on the Q City 9-Ball Tour, scheduled for the weekend of July 2-3, will be hosted by Chandley's Chalk and Cue in Statesville, NC. 

Ringgold gets by Johnson twice to claim Q City 9-Ball Title

JT Ringgold picked up his first victory on the 2016 Q City 9-Ball Tour with an undefeated run on the weekend of April 16-17. He dominated two matches versus Scotty Johnson to claim the event title, which drew 34 entrants to Mickey Milligan's Billiards in New Bern, NC.
 
They met first in the hot seat match. Ringgold had sent Jack Whitfield to the loss side 9-1, while Johnson was defeating Montez Lloyd 5-3. Ringgold subsequently gave up only two racks to Johnson and sat in the hot seat awaiting his return from the semifinals.
 
Over on the loss side, Whitfield picked up Jorge Ramos, who'd sent Jerry Cannon and Roy Musser home; 7-4 and 7-3. Lloyd drew Greg Smith, who'd defeated Justin Ward and Edward Forbes, both 8-2.
 
Whitfield advanced to the quarterfinals 5-3 over Ramos, and was joined by Smith, who'd ended Lloyd's day 8-4. Whitfield advanced one more step with a 5-4 victory over Smith, and one step away from a re-match against Ringgold, faced Johnson in the semifinals. 
 
Just as anxious for a re-match, Johnson downed Whitfield 5-1 and got his chance. As it turned out, his match against Whitfield was not only his last match victory, it proved to be the last time that Johnson would win a game. Ringgold completed his undefeated run through the field with a shutout over Johnson in the finals.
 
The next stop on the Q City 9-Ball Tour, scheduled for April 23-24, will be hosted by Brown's Billiards in Raleigh, NC.