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Derby City Classic Day Six

John Schmidt (Photo courtesy of Dave Thomson –

Derby City Classic XXI, January 25 – February 2nd, 2019
LIVE from the Horseshoe Southern Indiana Casino, Elizabeth IN.
410 entrants are now reduced to 24.
One Pocket; Chess with Balls.
Just like chess, One-Pocket is about knowing the moves. It is, also, said that the “mover” will out-play the shotmaker. As shotmakers have the need to pocket balls, One-Pocket players, “Tie ‘em up, stick ‘em in the stack, leave ‘em stuck.”
This strategy, knowingly, exercises patience that, eventually, frustrates the fast and loose shooters into firing at will. Actually, as the trap has been set, it really is firing unwillingly.
If you are looking to reinforce the maxim “revenge is sweet,” just ask Skyler Woodward. With a 3 zip result, just like had been administered to him in Banks (twice), he eliminated Billy Thorpe from the One-Pocket division.
The result puts Skyler in position to threaten the Master of the Table, or All-Around Champion, $20,000 bonus prize money.
Not to worry, Billy is still deep in it, too.
The player with the most points accumulated from DCC’s 3 qualifying events, Banks, 1-Pocket, and 9-Ball, will earn the honor.
It’s way too early to tell, but, if Skyler, with his 3rd/4th finish in Banks, climbs to there or better in One Pocket, he will challenge Billy’s current dominance with his 120 point advantage for the Bank Pool title.
If you thought that must be the match of the day, think again.
Opening the action on the Accu-Stats TV table was young Filipino gun, James Aranas in contest with veteran John “MR 400” Schmidt.
What unfolded was a stunning come-from-behind performance.
They were tied 2-2. In the decider, Aranas took an intentional foul, -1. Not to be outdone, John took 5 intentional fouls!
Soon, James, having nabbed a few, was in the plus side with 3. John was still at -5.
For those of you in-the-know, John, “Mr 400,” has been vigorously involved playing 14.1. He’s intent on beating Willie Mosconi’s 60+ year record high-run of 526 balls.
With the added incentive of a sweet bonus from his sponsor, Easy Street Billiards, Schmidt set up his video camera and went to work. For around 2 weeks John shot century after century and, tho,’ he didn’t out-run Mosconi, he did beat his own recorded 403 record by 31 balls. John has now the highest run on camera with 434!
That 14.1 skillset came into play today. At -5, he needed to pocket 13 balls in the same hole to overthrow Aranas.
When his onslaught commenced, in around 3 innings, John completely reversed his position and had James on the ropes. Ahead at 5-3, one more turn at the table was all it took to secure the set.
John’s “cueball” was exemplary, both in defense and offense. His know-how, compounded with the will to win, has set the standard of the year’s championship.
“James played smarter than I thought he did,” John considered after his win. ”How come these young kids know so much about One-Pocket?” 
By watching you John; watching you.
Lee Vann Corteza wasn’t so much out-moved by  Shane Van Boening as he was out-shot. Referring to the aforementioned Shooter principal, Shane has always been the exception to the rule.
His confidence, compounded by experience, knows no bounds. He attacks balls that old school one-holers would consider suicidal. His touch and speed allowed the tight-cut pro pockets to accept balls that, if missed, would surely leave Vann Corteza victorious.
Instead, at 3-1, Van Boening moved forward. Lee was delivered to the buyback booth.
Francisco Bustamante’s 3-1 over Joshua Filler was, somewhat, expected but Bustey shouldn’t be too confident next year. Scroll down to see Filler’s 14.1 coverage.
Players are running more 8 balls and out’s this year than ever. Roberto Gomez, not exactly known as a one-holer from -2, ran 10. Then, another 8, 2-0. Jeremy Jones ran 8, 2-1. Then, they grind until the cold roll stopped Double J’s ball one quarter of a revolution from dropping in the hole. Gomez stole Jeremy’s shape, back-cut it straight in his hole, and it’s 3-1.
13 players are still undefeated including, Omar Al Shaheen. With his 100 points as runner-up in Banks, has his eye on the All-Around prize. There’s, also, Justin Bergman, Taiwan’s Kevin Cheng, Corey Deuel, Scott Frost, Thorsten Hohmann. Evan Lunda and,  Alex Pagulayan.
One Pocket matches will air on at NOON. EDT.
407 entrants; Another DCC attendance record broken!
Race to 9. 3 balls, minus those pocketed, must make the kitchen on the break.
Johnny Archer was in superlative form as he caught Canada’s John Morra napping. Down 6-0 is certainly a wake-up call but John was so deep in the hole that he couldn’t recover. Scrambling, he mustered a few but, the dominant Archer soon shot Morra beddy-bye. 9-3.
Jung-Lin Chang, still on a 10-Ball roll, thought he was on a bar-box. Alex, who’s 168 ball run just missed the 14.1 cut, was in better stroke and managed 7 games.
Much more to come.
The high-run contest is manned by 14.1 aficionados Dennis Walsh and Bill Maropulis. Bob Jewett, the event creator, continues to support and contribute to the event.
Our thanks to Rich Klein for his daily scoring updates.
it took only ’til the second day, for Scotsman Jayson Shaw’s 247, two year, DCC high-run reign to be overthrown by Chris Melling, an Englishman. 244 became the number to beat.
Fortunately, as the upset to took place on American soil, an international incident was averted.
As Wednesday was the closing day for the runs to be tabulated, by early afternoon Bill Maropulis considered, “Even although the standard of play has been exceptional this year. It will take something extraordinary for Chris’ run to be beaten.”
Along came Orcollo, a previous tournament winner. Bang, 260!
Meanwhile, newly crowned 2018 World 9-Ball Champion Joshua Filler entered the room. Being German, Josh is no stranger to Straight Pool. 14.1 is part of the pool education program. Bang, bang, bang, 285!
Now there are 5 runs over 200 in the final 8 who will been drawn for a single elimination play-off to determine the champion.
Here are the high-run finalists.
Joshua Filler, 285
Dennis Orcollo, 260 
Chris Melling, 244
John Schmidt, 216
Mika Immonen, 201
Shane Van Boening, 198
Lee Vann Corteza, 183
Niels Feijen, 179.
This Just In! Here’s a sneak peak at the draw:
Filler vs. Feijen
Schmidt vs. Immonen
Melling vs. Van Boening
Orcollo vs. Corteza
Wednesday, 30th, Jan. 6 pm.
Diamond Lounge; On the Boat at Horseshoe Southern Indiana Casino, Elizabeth IN., under the auspices of Steve Booth, inducted Frost and James Walden.
Interestingly, the 2 players honored this year had quite a history together.
Road players are always on the hunt for new talent to skulk around with in search of the cash.
Walden had observed Frost as a talented kid and was awed by his dedication to learn and his taste for adventure.
Away they went. Frost’s forte (still is) was One-Pocket. James excelled in 9-Ball.
Exercising rule number 1 of the road, neither exposed their true expertise. Until they lost. Then one would announce, “Try him some.”
That’s how it’s done.
Scott Frost is now a jubilant member of the the One Pocket Hall of Fame!
James Walden has the honorable mention of “Lifetime Pool in Action!”
One Pocket Hall of Famer Shannon Daulton emcee’d the evening’s festivities, while fellow members Nick Varner John Brumback and Jeremy Jones entertained the one-hole fans with personal encounters with the honorees.
Accu-Stats thanks its Arena Sponsors: Diamond Billiards, Simonis Cloth, Cyclop Balls, Cuetec Cues, Lucasi Custom, MEZZ Cues, McDermott Cues, National Billiard Academy, and Samsara Cues.

Thorpe Wins Derby Banks on Day Five

Omar Al Shaheen: Under the radar no more! (Photo courtesy of Dave Thomson – Medium Pool)

Derby City Classic XXI, January 25 – February 2nd, 2019
LIVE from the Horseshoe Southern Indiana Casino, Elizabeth IN.
Race to 3, 9-Ball–Short Rack, $10,000 first place prize: $4,000 for second, $2,200, 3rd/4th, etc.
From a record-setting 505 entrants, there is only one man left standing.
Billy Thorpe, undefeated in 14 arduous rounds, became the undisputed Diamond Derby City Classic Bank Champion by eliminating Kuwait’s Omar Al Shaheen, 3-2.
En route to the Accu-Stats TV table, Billy had won games without his opponent being allowed to approach the table. In round 13, he had given Skyler Woodward, a DCC Banks Ring Game winner, his first loss at 3-0. The demolition included two games with 5 balls-and-out.
Today, they met again. The punishment was repeated: 3-0.
Al Shaheen had earned his berth by terminating the talented Josh Roberts 3-0 earlier in the day. In passing, he had also beaten back-to-back BIG Foot 10-Ball titlist Jayson Shaw and 3-time DCC Banks Champ John Brumback, just to name a few who are still in shock.
Previously, Omar had competed in DCC’s 9-Ball and Banks events but, had slipped under the slate as he had never gotten past the last 16.
Thorpe, throttle wide open, had been walloping the balls. There is no baby in Billy. He’s a pounder. He also had home field advantage having experienced the “heat” of the Accu-Stats’ lights.
Omar, on the other hand, had been conditioned in the expanse of the main arena where the playing field is a much more anonymous. Now, thanks to the Accu-Stats’ stream, he was under the lens for all the world to glare. 
Billy knew that feeling. Two years ago when, as an underdog, Thorpe pounced on Alex Pagulayan and stole the DCC One Pocket title. 
After the trouncing, respected Accu-Stats’ commentator Bill Incardona declared Billy the best banker in the world. Today, Thorpe had the opportunity to ratify that statement.
That title also contributed to Thorpe’s thrust into the limelight which led to being invited to compete with Team USA in the Mosconi Cup. Having experienced that pressure only made one feel impregnable.
In the opening game, we were made aware of the aggressive (defense, what defense?) strategy that had gotten Omar to the finals. Firing at everything, and making a lot of them, maybe threatened Thorpe a little, especially, when Omar secured the first game.
“Guys who compete wide open are dangerous,” Billy later stated, “Especially, in a short-rack, race to 3.” 
It’s, also, always interesting playing an unknown entity. There’s usually less pressure when competing against a familiar opponent, even when they’re more formidable than the unknown one.
Game 2, it’s all Billy and nothing but net. 1-1
Game 3. Omar bangs in 4 while Billy has only 2, Wise defense came to his rescue and bingo, Billy stole it and, it’s 2-1.
Game 4. Thorpe opens with 3. Al Shaheen makes one and scratches on the second. Billy slams the respotted orb. He’s one ball from the title.
Omar responds with 3, then 1. It’s a hill-hill–again! Billy leaves him long from the rail. Omar nails it. The boisterous crowd is screaming their appreciation. Sure, they want their homeboy to win but, Omar’s a humble guy. They like him, too. And, of course, the drama, we all love the drama.
It’s 2-2…and Omar is at bat. He makes 2 on the break. Then, runs 3.
“Oh no,” Billy a little bit twitchy. “How did it come to this? I’m starving, I should have eaten.” the thoughts are racing through his mind. He doesn’t want to think about the buy-back booth. “It’s OK, I’m undefeated, he has to beat me twice. Forget that! I’m closing this out NOW!”
He’s driven. He’s desperate.
Omar’s shaky. He shares out loud with the standing room only crowd, “The stress, the stress.” Yet, inside, he knows he can win this. Look how far he’s gotten. Why stop now?
Each having chipped away at the rack, until, again, they’re tied at 4.
One ball and Billy has another DCC championship belt. One more for Omar and he’ll secure a second set.
Defensive now, Omar leaves Billy long, very long. His dark eyes focused intently on the contact point, he pulls back his cue and, mustering all his power, he pummels the object ball…CRACK! The Cyclop almost busted the back of the pocket.
You can still hear his rebel yell ringing around the arena.
Omar is grateful, sure, a little bit deflated, but yet elated to have gotten so far. “What’s better than this in the sport we all love so much?” And, let’s not forget, he’ll go home a hero.
Billy has added another Diamond event to his resume. Plus, that’s 120 points towards the Master of the Table title. He’s still unbeaten in One-Pocket, plus, with the 9-Ball experience he gained as a winning Mosconi Cup team member two months ago, who knows what the future holds for the rising pool star.
410 entrants are now reduced to 116
Scott Frost handily defeated Dennis Orcollo 3-1 on the Accu-Stats TV table. Off to a blazing start the Freezer dismantled Robocop’s defenses. 
The closing rack offered endgame strategy. With Scott needing one, it was a lesson in moving both the cue and object ball into positions impossible. Scott came with 3 railer that no one expected, especially Dennis.
Niels Feijen ran into an upset with an unknown invader. John Brumback was bounced by Ruslan Chinakhov who was then handed a loss by Roberto Gomez.
One Pocket matches will air on at NOON. EDT.
The high-run contest is manned by 14.1 aficionados Dennis Walsh and Bill Maropulis. Bob Jewett, the event creator, has generously supplied healthy refreshments. Pool players sometimes forget to eat.
The 8 highest runs will compete in a single elimination play-off to determine the champion.
Here are the high-runs, so far:
Chris Melling, 244
John Schmidt, 216
Mika Immonen, 201
Joshua Filler, 198
Shane Van Boening, 198
Dennis Orcollo, 190 
Niels Feijen, 179
Jayson Shaw, 168
Wednesday, 30th, Jan. 6 pm.
Smoke and Rye Bar and Restaurant, near the main lobby by the Derby City Classic pool tournament arena., under the auspices of Steve Booth, will induct Scott Frost and James Walden.
A hearty congratulations to Scott Frost who will go into the One Pocket Hall of Fame!
In addition, James Walden will be honored for “Lifetime Pool in Action!”
One Pocket Hall of Famer Shannon Daulton, and friends, will entertain the one-hole fans with personal encounters with the honorees as he anchors the evening’s festivities.
The format is VIP dinner and drinks starting at 6 PM. Then about 7:15 PM the doors open for inexpensive appetizers and cash bar and the induction presentations.
You are invited to help us celebrate their achievements and to experience a piece of One-Pocket history.
Accu-Stats thanks its Arena Sponsors: Diamond Billiards, Simonis Cloth, Cyclop Balls, Cuetec Cues, Lucasi Custom, MEZZ Cues, McDermott Cues, National Billiard Academy, and Samsara Cues.

Compton goes undefeated to take final 2014 stop on the Midwest 9-Ball Tour

Chip Compton, Mike Durbin-sponsor and Joey Gray

Kent goes undefeated to capture Ladies' title
By Evelyn Dysart's calculations, Chip Compton and Joey Gray have, over a number of years, battled in the finals of a Midwest 9-Ball Tour event a minimum of 10 times.
"Probably more," she said. "They've been doing it ever since I've been running this tour, and it goes either way. It's not like either one of them has dominated the (series) of matches."
They met in the finals again, during the December 13-14 stop on the tour. They battled, first, for the hot seat and then, at the end, with Compton chalking up the win in both. The $1,900-added Open event drew 40 entrants to Jamaica Joe's in Midwest City, OK. A concurrently-run, $600-added Ladies event drew 13, and was won by Wendy Kent, who took two out of three over runner-up Debbi Aldridge.
After participating in the Open event and finishing just out of the money in the tie for ninth place, Mike Massey conducted a 30-minute, impromptu trick shot exhibition for participants and spectators. 
In the Open event, once Gray had shut out James Walden and Compton had sent Coy Lee Nicholson west 9-7, they met in the battle for the hot seat (which has presumably happened as many times as their meetings in the finals). Compton took that hot seat match 9-4 and waited on Gray's return.
Over on the loss side, Walden picked up K.C. Massey, who'd been responsible for eliminating Mike Massey (not related), and Moe Ali 9-8. Nicholson drew Jacob McMichael, fresh off his 9-5 victory over Marlon Isbell.
Walden and Nicholson got right back to work; Walden surviving a double hill battle against Massey, Nicholson downing McMichael 9-4. Walden took the quarterfinal match 9-7 over Nicholson before himself being eliminated 9-6 by Gray in the semifinals.
Compton and Gray duplicated their hot seat match. Compton chalked up the only set necessary in the finals 9-4 to claim the event title.
In the Ladies event, Wendy Kent's run went through Debbi Aldridge three times; once in the hot seat (7-2) and twice, in the double elimination finals. Aldridge moved to the loss side for a semifinal match against Diana Wolfe, who'd just eliminated Jessica Westbrook 7-5. Aldridge got her second shot at Kent with a 7-3 win over Wolfe, and then won the opening set of the finals, double hill. Kent didn't allow the second set to get that close, completing her title run 7-3.
The next stop on the Midwest 9-Ball Tour, scheduled for February 19, will be a triple tournament – One Pocket, 9-Ball and Ladies 9-Ball – hosted by Shooter's in Olathe, KS.

Gray goes undefeated, Aldridge comes from loss side to win 3rd Annual Summer Heat Classic

Joey Gray, manager Shane Ragland and Shane McMinn

Handicappers might have been a little stressed trying to establish odds as to which of four competitors in the winners' side semifinals of the 3rd Annual Summer Heat 9-Ball Classic was actually going to win the thing. They had Charlie Bryant, Chip Compton, Shane McMinn and Joey Gray to consider. Gray came through in the end, completing an undefeated run through a field of 57, on hand for the $2,200-added event, hosted by Jamaica Joe's in Midwest City, OK.
A concurrently-run, $300-added Ladies event drew only eight entrants and was won, from the loss side, by Debi Aldridge, who double dipped Elise Gabriel in the finals. 
It was Bryant versus Compton and Gray versus McMinn in the winners' side semifinals. Compton sent Bryant west 9-7, while Gray was busy doing likewise to McMinn 9-5. Gray defeated Compton 9-4 to take command of the hot seat, and waited on what turned out to be the return of McMinn.
Bryant and McMinn got right back to work on the loss side. McMinn faced Donny Brown who'd gotten by Billy Dyke 9-7 and survived a double hill struggle against James Walden. Bryant picked up Keith Boon, who had his own double hill fight against Jeremy Hundley and an easier time with Steve Langiano 9-3. Bryant and McMinn advanced to the quarterfinals with identical 9-6 wins over Boon and Brown.
The winners' side semifinalists were now the event's final four. McMinn took the first step, defeating Bryant in the quarterfinals 9-7.  He then ended Compton's bid 9-5 in the semifinals and earned his rematch against Gray. Gray, though, completed his undefeated run with a second victory over McMinn, 9-3, to claim the 3rd Annual Summer Heat 9-Ball Classic title.
In the ladies' event, it was Elise Gabriel and Wendy Kent who faced each other in the battle for the hot seat. Gabriel won it 7-5 and waited on the eventual winner, Debi Aldridge. Kent moved over and was defeated 7-2 by Aldridge. Aldridge claimed the event title after winning a double hill battle in the finals' opening set, and followed that with a 7-2 victory.

Roberts goes undefeated on Midwest 9-Ball Tour, claiming third One Pocket title since March

Josh Roberts, Mike Durbin, Pat Diveney and Skyler Woodward

Josh Roberts has been on something of a One Pocket tear since March, when he defeated Justin Bergman in the finals of the Big Tyme Classic One Pocket Tournament in Spring, TX. One week before entering the 44-entrant, $1,000-added Midwest 9-Ball Tour's One Pocket event at Shooter's in Olathe, KS (June 26-29), he defeated Justin Bergman again, in the finals of the Big Dog One Pocket Championship in Des Moines, IA (June 20-22). In Kansas, his finals nemesis was Skyler Woodward, who finished 5th/6th in the 92-entrant Open event (Roberts finished 9-12; story elsewhere). Woodward chalked up an eight-match, loss-side winning streak to face him in the One Pocket finals; to no avail, as it turned out.
With (typical) races to three, there are only three possible scores to One Pocket matches. Eight of the Midwest 9-Ball Tour's One Pocket event's last 14 games ended in double hill, 3-2 scores, including the hot seat match and finals. There were four shutouts, including one in the semifinals, and two 3-1 scores. In the interest of not being overly repetitive, we'll adopt a won or lost attitude in reporting the details.
It was something of a star-studded field as the One Pocket event entered its Final 12 stages. In the winners' side semifinals, Roberts faced Robb Saez, while John Gabriel met Joey Gray. On the loss side, the eight players vying to advance to the first money round, were Cliff Joyner vs. Chip Compton, Danny Smith vs. Mike Hopkins, Skyler Woodward vs. Gary Lutman and James Walden vs. Darren Everett.
On the winners' side, Gabriel defeated Gray and moved into the hot seat match versus Roberts, who'd defeated Saez. Roberts took the hot seat, double hill, and waited on Woodward.
With three down and five to go on his loss-side scoresheet, Woodward defeated Lutman and Walden to pick up Saez. Gray drew Danny Smith, who'd downed Hopkins and Joyner (giving up only a single game in the process; to Joyner). Gray got by Smith, double hill, as Woodward eliminated Saez with a shutout.
Woodward chalked up the second-to-last double hill win against Gray in the quarterfinals, and recorded the last shutout, against Gabriel, in the semifinals. Woodward and Roberts locked up in an appropriate double hill match in the finals, won by Roberts to claim the event title.

McMinn double dips Weast to capture Midwest 9-Ball title; Lovely wins Ladies event

Shane McMinn, Kathy McMinn- manager and Jim Weast

Shane McMinn came back from a double hill loss in a winners' side semifinal against Jim Weast to double dip him in the finals and claim title to the December 14-15 stop on the Midwest 9-Ball Tour. In a concurrently-run event, Liz Lovely went undefeated to claim the Ladies title. The $1,500-added Open event drew 49 entrants to Magoo's Billiards in Tulsa, OK. The $350-added Ladies tournament drew 14 entrants.
As Weast was at work on McMinn in the one winners' side semifinal, John Gabriel took on Joey Gray in the other. Weast survived his double hill match against McMinn, and faced Gabriel, who'd sent Gray over 7-4. Weast defeated Gabriel 7-4 to claim the hot seat. 
McMinn moved over to pick up Greg Hogue, who'd shut out Marlon Isbell and given up only a single rack to Jaron Williams. Gray picked up Joe Abrams, who'd gotten by Christian Young 5-2 and James Walden 5-3. A very familiar, Midwest 9-Ball battle was set up when McMinn downed Hogue 5-3 and Gray shut out Abrams. 
In the quarterfinals that followed, McMinn gave up only a single rack to Gray, and then, gave up only two against Gabriel in the semifinals. McMinn took the opening set of the finals 7-4, and then punctuated his performance with a shutout over Weast in the second set.
Liz Lovely's victory in the Ladies event went through Brittany Colbert, whom she defeated 5-3 in the hot seat match. Colbert moved to the semifinals against Rhonda Pierce, who'd defeated Debi Aldredge 4-2 in the quarterfinals. Pierce denied Colbert a second shot at Lovely with a shutout in the semifinals. Lovely completed her undefeated run with a 5-1 victory in the finals.

King and Little win 2nd Annual Summer Heat 9-Ball Classic

Melissa Little went undefeated to win the Ladies portion of the 2nd Annual Summer Heat 9-Ball Classic, held under the auspices of the Midwest 9-Ball Tour and hosted by Jamaica Joe's in Midwest City, OK. Sean King gave up the first set of the double elimination finals, but came back to win the second and claim the Open title. The $2,000-added Open event drew 45 entrants, while the $500-added Ladies event drew 12.
King faced Chip Compton three times; the first, in a winners' side semifinal, as Mark Haddad and Richard Pierce squared off in the other. King sent Compton west in the first of their three 9-7, and in the hot seat match, met Pierce, who'd sent Haddad over by the same score. King and Pierce fought to double hill before King prevailed.
Compton moved over and picked up John Gabriel, who'd defeated James Walden 9-7 and survived a double hill battle against Ken Jennings to reach him. Haddad drew Shane McMinn, who'd gotten by Greg Hogue 9-7, and J.C Riley 9-3. Compton and Haddad advanced to the quarterfinals; Compton with a 9-6 win over Gabriel and Haddad 9-7 over McMinn.
Compton advanced to the semifinals with a 9-6 victory over Haddad, and then, denied Pierce a re-match against King with a 9-5 win. With momentum on his side, Compton took the opening set of the finals 9-1. King, though, came back in the second set to win it 9-5 and claim the event title.
In the Ladies' event, Melissa Little's undefeated run ended with two wins over Rhonda Pierce. They met first in the hot seat match, when Little sent Pierce to the semifinals 7-4. On the loss side, Debi Aldridge won the quarterfinal match over Michelle Davis 7-3, but was stopped by Pierce in a double hill, semifinal match. Little and Pierce fought to double hill in the finals, but Little survived to claim the Ladies' title.