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Young Guns Dominate Winner’s Bracket in Opening Day of US Bar Table Championships

Billy Thorpe

The opening day of the 23rd Annual US Bar Table Championships began with a field of 74 players at the Westgate Las Vegas Resort & Casino. And by the time the first day’s matches concluded, just three remained on the winner’s side of the bracket: Sky Woodward, Justin Bergman and Billy Thorpe — all among a growing group of strong, young players.  
Woodward and Bergman will face off at Noon Tuesday and the winner of the match will play Thorpe for the hot seat.
Thorpe posted wins Monday over Can Salim, 7-4; Mike Massey, 7-1; Randy Hatten, 7-2; Larry Nevel Jr., 7-5; and Shane Van Boening, 7-4.
Bergman also play strong all day, with sound wins over Miguel Batista, 7-6; Jason Klatt, 7-1; Jesse Piercey, 7-4; Dale Stanley, 7-2; and Vilmos Foldes.
Woodward’s path had victories over Manny Perez, 7-5; Mo Salamah, 7-4; Bret Huth, 7-0; and Chris McDaniel, 7-2.
But there are plenty of solid players on the B-side of the bracket hoping to take home the $3,800 first prize, including Manny Perez, who plays Rodrigo Geronimo at 9 a.m. and Mike Massey, who plays Dale Stanley. Others still on the one-loss side include Van Boening, Sal Butera, Bret Huth, James Adams, Jamie Bruce, Salim, Shane McMinn, Foldes, Piercey, Hattan, McDaniel, Belobradie, Nevel and Josh Roberts.
In the Women’s Division, Rebecca Wagner will play Jessica Frideres in the hot seat match at Noon Tuesday. Wagner posted wins against Trihn Lu , 5-3; Kimberly Whitman, 5-4 and Mary Coffman, 5-0. Frideres’ path included victories over Grace Nakamura, 5-1; Heather Cortez, 5-3; and Adina Pelletier, 5-0.
On the one-loss side, Nakamura takes on Whitney at 9 a.m. and Kimberly Kirk plays Deb Aarens, also at 9 a.m. The winners of those matches play Pelletier and Coffman.
The US Bar Table Championships take play through Aug. 28 and offer 8-ball, 9-ball and 10-ball divisions, as well as a Master of the Table bonus for both the open and women’s divisions.
In addition, players who place in the top 32 of each open division receive Mosconi Cup USA Team points on a sliding scale. The top three American players with the most points at the end of the year will be selected for the USA Mosconi Cup Team.
Sponsors include: OB Cues, the Official Cue; Kamui, the Official Tip; Diamond Billiard Products, Cyclop Balls, Simonis Cloth, BadBoys Billiard Productions, FargoRate, Magic Ball Rack and Matchroom Sport.
10-Ball Divisions Aug. 22-24
Open 10-Ball: Race to 7/$5,000 added
Women’s 10-Ball; Race to 5/ $1,000 added
9-Ball Divisions: Aug. 24-26
Open 9-Ball: Race to 9/$5,000 added
Women’s 9-Ball; Race to 7/ $1,000 added
8-ball Divisions: Aug. 26-28
Open 10-Ball: Race to 5/$5,000 added
Women’s 10-Ball; Race to 4/ $1,000 added
Master of the Table Bonuses*
Open Divisions: $1,500/Women’s Divisions: $500  
*Players must compete in all three divisions to be eligible for the bonus.

The Rocket goes undefeated to take $12,000-added Chinook Winds 10-Ball Open

Rodney Morris

Rodney "The Rocket" Morris, who's been making a lot of payout noise on the Mezz West Tour this year (three wins, and four other payout finishes) and won the 8th Annual Wyoming Open Masters 10-Ball in March, traveled to Lincoln City, Oregon for the 3rd Annual Chinook Winds Open 10-Ball Championships. He went undefeated through the field of 118, on-hand for the $12,000-added Open portion of the event, hosted by the Chinook Winds Casino and Resort, in Lincoln City (a Ladies tournament drew 30 entrants; separate story). 
Morris won four matches with an aggregate score of 28-7 and along with seven others, advanced out of a preliminary A bracket. Carlo Biado, his ultimate finals opponent, came out of the winners' side of the B bracket. 
Morris ran into some stiff competition in the final winners' side bracket of eight players, completing his undefeated run with an aggregate score over his last four games of 28-19. After defeating Danny Gokhul 7-5, he ran into a determined Warren Kiamco, who put up a double hill fight in one of the winners' side semifinals. Stan Tourangeau defeated Miguel Morfin 7-5 in the other one. Morris claimed the hot seat 7-5 over Tourangeau and waited on the return of Biado.
Biado, in the meantime, who'd been on the winners' side of the final bracket, had been sent to the loss side by Tournageau 7-3. He defeated Jamie Bruce 7-5 and survived a double hill battle against Marc Vidal Claramunt to draw Kiamco. Morfin picked up Gokhul, who, after his loss to Morris on the winners' side, had defeated Darrold Crain 7-4 and survived his own double hill fight against Randy Baker.
Biado downed Kiamco 7-4, as Gokhul got through his second straight double hill fight, over Morfin. Biado picked up the pace a little with a shutout over Gokhul in the quarterfinals, and gave up only a single rack to Tournageau in the semifinals. Morris completed his undefeated run with a 7-3 win over Biado in the finals. 
The Open and Ladies events were streamed live throughout the weekend by On the Rail TV.