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Kraber double dips Peters to claim second OTB Ladies Tour title

Jennifer Kraber

Texas is a big state, all 268,820 square miles of it. Female Texas pool players who’ve been competing against each other for any number of years might argue that while it may be a big state, it’s a small world after all. 

This past weekend (Nov. 20-21), Jennifer Kraber, whose been making entries into her AZBilliards’ profile since the turn of the century, came from the loss side in the second stop of the 2021 On the Ball Ladies Tour and double dipped Courtney Peters to claim the event title. The last time these two met, pre-pandemic in February 2020, in the Ladies division of the 6th Texas Open 10-Ball event, Kraber got into the hot seat with a victory over Peters and downed her again in the finals. Kraber and Ming Ng, who met in the battles for 5th/6th at this event, had battled in the finals of the inaugural stop of the On The Ball Ladies Tour last month (Oct. 16-17), at which Ng claimed the title. They’d also squared off in the finals of the 2018 Texas Open 10-Ball, won by Kraber. Ng had defeated Kraber in the finals of the 45th Texas Open that same year. Kraber had defeated Ng in the finals of the Houston Open in 2015, while five years earlier, in the same event, they’d finished as runner-up (Ng) and 3rd (Kraber) to Amanda Lampert.

Small world. The $3,000-added 9-Ball event that drew 34 women this past weekend, was hosted by perennial big state, small world host, Skinny Bob’s in Round Rock, TX.

Kraber’s path to the winners’ circle ran through a bye, Darcy Durham 7-4 and Natalie Rocha 7-2, before coming up against Kim Pierce in a winners’ side quarterfinal. They battled to double hill before Pierce prevailed to draw Courtney Peters in one of the winners’ side semifinals. Peters had arrived after downing Michelle Cortez 7-5, shutting out Erica Hanlon, surviving a double hill fight versus Nicole McDaniel and in a winners’ side quarterfinal, sending Cristina Schneider west 7-4.

Meanwhile, Ming Ng was working her way through the lower portion of the bracket against Mary Grigsby 7-2, Teresa Garland 7-1 and Mille Almaraz 7-5 to draw Kim Sanders in the other winners’ side semifinal. Sanders had sent Carmel Luttrell 7-1, Jenna Bishoff, double hill, and Christine McClamma 7-2 to the loss side.

Sanders sent Ng over 7-5 for what turned out to be a match versus Kraber. Peters shut out Pierce to join Sanders in the hot seat match. Peters gave up only a single rack to Sanders to claim the hot seat.

On the loss side, Ng ran right into Kraber, who, following her defeat at the hands of Pierce, had eliminated Michelle Yim 7-1 and Jenna Bishoff, double hill. Pierce drew Nicole McDaniel, who was working on a four-match, loss-side winning streak that was about to end and had recently included elimination wins over McLamma 7-3 and Michelle Cortez, double hill.

Kraber and Ng battled to a predictable double hill juncture, before Kraber advanced to a rematch against Pierce in the quarterfinals. Pierce had won her second straight double hill match, versus McDaniel to advance.

They’d battled to double hill in their winners’ side match and apparently Kraber wanted nothing to do with that a second time, in the quarterfinals. She gave up only a single rack to Pierce and advanced to a semifinal match against another Kim, Sanders. Kraber won that 7-4 to earn herself a double-elimination shot against Peters in the finals.

Kraber took the opening set 7-5. She followed it with a 7-4 win in the second set to claim the second stop of the On The Ball Ladies Tour.

A $100-added Best of the Rest Tournament drew 16 players on Sunday. Autumn Duncan downed Mille Almaraz in the finals. The tour also announced three End of Year award winners: Ming Ng – Tour Champion, Most Improved Player – Courtney Peters and a Best Sportsmanship award to Michelle Cortez.

Tour representatives thanked Kim and Tracy Sanders and their staff at Skinny Bob’s for their hospitality, as well as title sponsor On the Ball Co., and Draw Nation Streaming for providing the live stream. The next stop of the On the Ball Ladies Tour, scheduled for the weekend of Jan. 29-30, will be hosted by Big Tyme Billiards in Spring, TX.

Ming Ng double dips Kraber to win 1st stop of On the Ball Ladies Tour in Houston

Ming Ng

Though Ming Ng has been slightly more ‘active’ this year than she was the year before (cashing in seven events this year vs. five events in 2020), last year was more productive for her financially because she won three of the five events in which she’d competed; the first stop on the Gulf Coast Women’s Regional Tour, the second stop on the former Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour and the Ladies Division of the 47th Annual Texas Open. Ng won her first 2021 event this past weekend (Oct. 16-17) when she took two out of three matches against Jennifer Kraber to win the opening stop of the On the Ball Ladies Tour (formerly the Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour). The $2,000-added event drew 19 entrants to Bogie’s Billiards in Houston, TX.

After an opening round bye, Ng got by Darcy Durham 7-4 and Kim Sanders 7-3 to arrive at a winners’ side semifinal matchup versus tour director Teresa Garland. Kraber, in the meantime, also with an opening round bye, had dispatched Natalie Mans and Cheyenne Valdez, both 7-4, to draw her winners’ side semifinal opponent, Courtney Peters.

Twenty-five games later, Ng and Kraber advanced to face each other in the hot seat match. Ng and Garland had battled to double hill before Ng prevailed, while Kraber and Peters came within a game of double hill (6-5), before Kraber chalked up the 7th rack that earned her the right to face Ng. Kraber then defeated Ng in their first of three, 7-3 to claim the hot seat.

On the loss side, Peters drew Chris Fields, who’d lost her opening round match in a double hill battle versus Kim Pierce and was working on a four-match, loss-side winning streak that had recently eliminated Kim Sanders and, in a rematch, Kim Pierce, both 7-5. Garland picked up Yvonne Asher, who’d been defeated by Peters in a winners’ side quarterfinal and had survived two straight double-hill matches against Shayla Neris and Natalie Rocha.

Peters and Fields battled back and forth to double hill before Peters advanced to the quarterfinals. Garland joined her after allowing Asher only a single rack. Peters did likewise to Garland in the quarterfinals, advancing to the semifinals 7-1.

The semifinals was about which of the two competitors who’d already been defeated once by the occupant of the hot seat, Jennifer Kraber, was going to get a second shot at her. Ming Ng earned the right at that second shot with a 7-3 victory over Peters.

Much as the two winners’ side semifinal matches had required 25 games to advance two competitors to the hot seat match, the true double elimination finals required 25 games to advance one of the competitors into the winners’ circle. Ng and Kraber fought to double hill in the opening set before Ng prevailed to force the second set. She took the second set 7-5 to claim the first event title of the On the Ball Ladies Tour.

Tour representatives thanked the ownership and staff at Bogie’s Billiards for their hospitality, as well as title sponsor On the Ball. The next stop on the tour will be the $3,000-added tour finale, scheduled for the weekend of Nov. 20-21 at Skinny Bob’s in Round Rock, TX.

Ng goes undefeated to claim Stop #2 on Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour

Ming Ng

Having won the season opener of the Gulf Coast Regional Tour in early January and a week later, finished as runner-up at the season opener of the 2020 Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour (JOLT), Ming Ng signed on to compete in Stop #2 of the JOLT and went undefeated to claim the title. She faced separate opponents in the hot seat and finals of this Feb. 29-March 1, $2,000-added  event that drew 27 entrants to Skinny Bob’s in Round Rock, TX.

Ng opened her campaign with victories over Sandra Melo and Tam Trinh before running into Angie Payne, who put up a double hill fight that almost sidetracked Ng’s march to the hot seat. Ng advanced to a winners’ side semifinal against Michelle Cortez, whom she’d face twice, before this was over. Natalie Rocha, in the meantime, who’d battled Ng twice (hot seat and finals) in that Gulf Coast Regional Tour season opener, worked her way through Rachel Hurst, Rosa Cantu and Jennifer Kraber to draw Teresa Garland in the other winners’ side semifinal.

Ng got into the hot seat match with a 7-5 victory over Cortez in their first of two. Rocha joined Ng following a 7-4 victory over Garland. Ng claimed the hot seat 7-4 over Rocha and waited on what turned out to be the return of Cortez.

On the loss side, Garland picked up Angie Payne, who, following her double hill loss to Ng on the winners’ side, downed Yvonne Asher 7-2 and Brittany Williams 7-4. Cortez drew a rematch against Kim Pierce, whom she’d defeated in the second winners’ side round. Pierce was in the midst of a four-match, loss-side winning streak that was about to end and had recently included victories over Jennifer Kraber 7-5 and Tam Trinh 7-3.

Garland eliminated Payne 7-4, as Cortez downed Pierce a second time, 7-5. Cortez and Garland battled to double hill in the quarterfinals before Cortez prevailed for a shot at Rocha in the semifinals.

Cortez completed her brief, successful loss-side run with a 7-4 win over Rocha in those semifinals. Momentum did not appear to be on Cortez’ side in the finals that followed. She’d battled to within a game of double hill in the earlier hot seat match, but could only manage a single rack in the finals. Ng completed her second undefeated 2020 run 7-1 to claim the event title.

A $100-added Best of the Rest Tournament was won by Jennifer Kraber. Yvonne Asher finished as runner-up.

Tour representatives thanked the ownership and staff at Skinny Bob’s, as well as title sponsor Jerry Olivier Cues. The next stop on the Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour, scheduled for the weekend of April 4-5 will be hosted by Diamond Sports Bar in Port Arthur, TX.

World-class trio of Orcollo, Kiamco & Bustamante go 1, 2, 3 at 6th Annual Texas Open 10-Ball

Kraber goes undefeated to win her second Texas Women’s 10-Ball Championship

(l to r): John Palmore, Dennis Orcollo & James Davis, Sr.

Being Texas, it’s never enough to just hold an Open and Ladies 10-Ball tournament every year. Instead, Skinny Bob’s Billiards in Round Rock, TX hosts a six-day extravaganza (this year, from Feb. 12-17) that has a way of feeling like a month-long extravaganza, headlined by the annual Texas 10-Ball Open and Ladies 10-Ball Championships.

Things got underway on Wednesday, Feb. 12 with a 10-Ball mini-tournament, as more or less of a warm-up for events to come. On Thursday, the activity was a Scotch Doubles tournament that was eventually won by the team of Warren Kiamco and Ellen Robinson, who downed John Gabriel and Ellen Jones in the finals. Later in the day, a Banks/Rails game was won Sergio Rivas, who defeated John Demet in the finals. On Friday, an Open Ring game was won by Jeffrey DeLuna, with Sky Woodward as runner-up and John Gabriel in third place.

In the absence of a defending champion (Alex Pagulayan), a few relatively well-known Filipino competitors stepped in to fill the gap at the $4,000-added 6th Annual Texas Open 10-Ball, which got underway on Friday evening. Dennis Orcollo ended up going undefeated through the field. He downed Warren Kiamco twice (hot seat and finals) and waited patiently as Kiamco eliminated Francisco Bustamante in the semifinals. We’ll get back to them in a while, but first. . . the ladies.

The $1,000-added Ladies 10-Ball Championship, which drew 20 entrants, got underway on Saturday. Unlike the Open Championship, the Ladies event featured its defending champion, Gail Eaton. It was won by its 2018 champion, Jennifer Kraber, who went undefeated through the field, downing Courtney Peters twice, hot seat and finals.

Following victories over Kim Pierce, Kelly Jones and Rachel Hurst, Kraber moved into a winners’ side semifinal against Ming Ng. After being awarded an opening round bye, Peters downed Latonia Taylor and Michelle Yim, to draw Nicole McDaniel in the other winners’ side semifinal.

Kraber and Ng locked up in a double hill fight that eventually advanced Kraber to the hot seat match. She was joined by Peters, who’d defeated McDaniel 7-1. Kraber won the first of two versus Peters 7-3 and waited in the hot seat for her return.

On the loss side, Nicole McDaniel drew Kim Sanders, who’d recently eliminated defending champion Gail Eaton and Rachel Hurst, both 5-3. Ming Ng picked up Michelle Yim, who’d defeated Ellen Robinson 5-3 and Kelly Jones 5-2 to reach her.

Yim and Sanders handed Ng and McDaniel their second straight loss; Yim, 5-3 over Ng and Sanders shut McDaniel out to join Yim in the quarterfinals. Yim then did unto Sanders that which Sanders had most recently done to McDaniel; shut her out to advance.

In the semifinals that followed, Yim became the third shutout victim in a row and gave Peters a second shot at Kraber in the hot seat. Peters chalked up two more racks in the finals than she’d chalked up against Kraber in the hot seat match, but they weren’t enough, as Kraber completed her undefeated run 7-5 to claim the Ladies 10-Ball title.

Orcollo backs up Derby City Master of the Table title with undefeated run at Texas Open 10-Ball
It’s only February and Dennis Orcollo has pocketed money that would be the envy of most pool players to earn in an entire year. He finished 16th in the Derby City’s One Pocket Division, 3rd in the 9-Ball Division and won the 9-Ball Banks, all of which earned him the coveted Master of the Table title. All of this followed his victory at the Music City’s Midnight Madness Tournament and his runner-up finish (to Skyler Woodward) in the Music City’s Open Division. He didn’t get a chance to meet Woodward in this event, although Warren Kiamco did.

Robocop (as they call him) got by Kenny Loftis, John Gabriel, Justin Hall, Kevin Guimond and Junior Jueco by an aggregate score of 35-12, giving up just over two racks per match (on average). Orcollo drew Naoyuki Oi in one of the winners’ side semifinals.

Warren Kiamco, in the meantime, started his campaign out with back-to-back shutouts of Thomas Smith and Pat Castro. He then defeated Josh Roberts 7-1, Robert Gomez 7-3 and won a knock-down, drag-out, double hill match versus Sky Woodward (this event’s 2016 champion) to arrive at his winners’ side semifinal matchup with a 35-10 aggregate score and having given up an exact average of two racks per match. Kiamco squared off in his winners’ side semifinal against a very familiar opponent, Francisco Bustamante, who’d sent this event’s 2015 and 2017 champion, Manny Chau to the loss side.

Orcollo sent Oi to the loss side 7-2 and was joined in the hot seat match by Kiamco, who’d defeated Bustamante 7-4. Orcollo and Kiamco played an entertaining double hill hot seat match that eventually sent Kiamco to the semifinals and left Robocop in the hot seat.

On the loss side, Naoyuki Oi drew James Davis, Sr. (known as Strop, because he’s originally from Bastrop, TX), who’d recently defeated two strong opponents in a row to reach him; first Josh Roberts 7-4 and then, Sky Woodward 7-5. Bustamante picked up Roberto Gomez, who’d defeated Junior Jueco 7-1 and Sergio Rivas 7-3 to reach him.

Strop and Oi locked up in a double hill fight, eventually won by Strop. Bustamante joined Strop in the quarterfinals after eliminating Gomez 7-4. Bustamante then sent Davis, Sr. home 7-3 in those quarterfinals.

Those who thought that Bustamante and Kiamco would get into a double hill fight for a shot at Orcollo in the hot seat were disappointed. Kiamco gave up just a single rack and advanced to the finals 7-1 over Bustamante.

One might have been forgiven for believing that with that 7-1 momentum, the final rematch between Kiamco and Orcollo would have been something of an epic struggle. It wasn’t, really. Orcollo shut Kiamco out 7-0 to claim the event title.

Tour directors John Palmore and James Davis, Sr. thanked John and Sue Cielo and their Skinny Bob’s staff for their continued support of this event, to include their hands-on assistance with varied aspects of running the tournament; entries, money management, etc. In addition, noted Palmore, “Kaye Watson is the glue that holds everything together for (Davis) and I. She helps with bracket management and most importantly, that all the the money is correct coming in and going out.” They also thanked event sponsors Simonis, Hanshew Jump Cues and Sleep Inn.

Williams comes from the loss side to down Ng in JO Ladies Tour season opener

(l to r): Ming Ng & Tara Williams

It is a reflection of a widely varied women’s tour field that Tara Williams, winner of the Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour season opener this past weekend (January 11-12), earned more in 2019, finishing in the money twice (4th in both the SBE Women’s Championship and the NAPT’s Desert Challenge) than the event’s runner-up, Ming Ng made last year, winning two events – the 46th Texas Open, Ladies division & a stop on the Gulf Coast Women’s Regional Tour – and finishing 4th at the 5th Texas 10-Ball Championships/Ladies. Williams and Ng advanced in the  JO Ladies Tour season opener to a winners’ side semifinal, where Williams was defeated. She won three on the loss side and double dipped Ng in the double eliminaton final to claim the event title. The $2,000-added event drew 43 entrants to Big Tyme Billiards in Spring, TX.
 
As Tara Williams faced Kim Sanders in one of the winners’ side semifinals, Ng squared off against Angie Payne in the other one. Sanders downed Williams 7-5 and was joined in the hot seat match by Ng, who’d defeated Payne 7-4. Ng claimed the hot seat 7-2.
 
On the loss side, Williams and Payne ran into competitors who’d been sent to the loss side by Ng and Williams in a winners’ side quarterfinal. Williams drew Jennifer Kraber, who, following her defeat at the hands of Ng 7-3, defeated Yvonne Asher 7-4 and survived a double hill battle versus Teresa Garland. Payne drew Michelle Cortez, who’d been defeated by Williams 7-4 and after picking up a forfeit win in the first money round (9/12), had defeated Terry Petrosino 7-1.
 
Williams downed Kraber 7-3, as Cortez completed her side of the quarterfinal re-match equation with a 7-5 win over Payne. Williams downed Cortez a second time, this time 7-2, to earn a second straight rematch; this time against Sanders in the semifinal.
 
Their meeting in one of the winners’ side semifinals had come within a game of double hill (7-5). Their meeting in the overall semifinal wasn’t as close. Williams eliminated Sanders 7-3 for a shot at Ng in the hot seat.
 
Williams’ three-match work on the loss side of the bracket had been consistent; giving up three or less racks in each of the three matches. She maintained that pace and downed Ng in the finals by giving up three in the opening set, but only two in the second set that gave her the event title.
 
A $100-added Best of the Rest tournament drew eight entrants. Sandra Melo took home the top prize, with Monica Anderson finishing as runner-up.
 
Tour representatives thanked Billy and Debbie Sharp and their Big Tyme Billiards staff for their hospitality, as well as title sponsor Jerry Olivier Cues, Roger Allen (for providing cue repair), and Art Politte with QXtender for attending. The next stop on the Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour, scheduled for the Leap Year weekend (February 29-March 1), will be hosted by Skinny Bob’s in Round Rock, TX.

Bishoff takes two out of three versus Kraber to win Jerry Olivier Ladies’ Tour season finale

(l to r): Winner Jenna Bishoff & Tour Champion Kim Pierce

Looking for her second 2019 tour victory, her first having come on the North Central Pool Tour in Illinois (August), Jenna Bishoff shifted south a bit to join the Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour in League City, TX for its 7th tour stop and season finale, where she met up with Jennifer Kraber three times. The last two meetings were in the finals where Bishoff double-dipped Kraber to claim the event title. The $3,000-added event drew 45 entrants to Legends Billiards in League City.
 
Following victories over Natalie Rocha, Yvonne Asher, Ming Ng and Michelle Yim, Bishoff advanced to her first meeting with Kraber in one of the winners’ side semifinals. Kraber had gotten by Regina Gomez, Gail Roles, Aryana Lynch, and Calaia Jackson to draw Bishoff. Kim Sanders, in the meantime, faced off against tour director Teresa Garland in the other winners’ side semifinal.
 
Kraber won the first of three versus Bishoff 7-5 and in the hot seat match, faced Sanders who’d sent Garland west 7-4. Kraber gave up only a single rack to Sanders in the match that followed, winning what proved to be her last match and claiming the hot seat.
 
Over on the loss side, Bishoff picked up Autumn Duncan, who’d been sent to the loss side in the second round by Michelle Cortez in a double hill fight and was in the midst of a seven-match, loss-side winning streak that included recent victories over Belinda Lee 7-1 and Kim Pierce 7-2, and was about to come to an end. Garland drew Janeen Lee, who’d recently eliminated Calaia Jackson and Michelle Cortez, both 7-5.
 
Bishoff’s bid for a rematch against Kraber in the hot seat was almost stopped by Duncan, who battled her to double hill before giving way and settling for the two-way tie for 5th place. Lee, in the meantime, defeated Garland 7-5 to join Bishoff in the quarterfinals.
 
Bishoff then chalked up three straight 7-2 wins; against Lee in the quarterfinals, Sanders in the semifinals and Kraber in the opening set of the true double elimination finals. Bishoff punctuated her run with a shutout over Kraber in the second set of the finals to claim the tour’s season finale title.
 
In what was described as a “battle to the (tour) finish line,” Kim Pierce was announced as the 2019 Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour Champion. Kelly Jones was identified as the tour’s Most Improved Player, while Calaia Jackson picked up the Best Sportsmanship Award; all were awarded trophies for the accomplishment. Pierce and Jones received free entries for 2020. Jackson will receive one free entry. Jennifer Kraber received a $50 scratch-off ticket at the tour’s player with the most break-and-runs. Jackson was identified as the competitor with the season’s most 9-on-the-breaks.
 
Tour representatives thanked Mindy and Craig Cohen and their Legends staff, as well as title sponsor Jerry Olivier Custom Cues and tour affiliates Mz Tam and Strokin’ Billiards.

Kraber records her first 2019 victory, going undefeated on Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour

Jennifer Kraber

It was her first (recorded) victory on the Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour since its debut in March of last year, when she went undefeated to claim the inaugural tour title. On the weekend of October 19-20, Jennifer Kraber joined 21 competitors for the 6th stop on the 2019 tour and went undefeated through the field, downing Michelle Cortez twice to claim the event title. The $2,000-added event was hosted by Fast Eddie’s Billiards in Embassy Oaks, TX.
 
Following an opening round bye, Kraber chalked up wins over Michelle Yim 7-4 and Angie Payne 7-2 to arrive at a winners’ side semifinal match against Kelly Jones. Cortez, in the meantime, after her opening round bye, got by Ellen Robinson and Teresa Garland, both 7-5, to draw Rachel Hurst in the other winners’ side semifinal.
 
Kraber moved into the hot seat match with a 7-4 win over Jones and was joined by Cortez, who’d sent Hurst to the loss side 7-3. Kraber and Cortez battled to double hill in their struggle for the hot seat before Kraber prevailed and Cortez moved over to the semifinals.
 
Jones and Hurst arrived on the loss side of the bracket and immediately picked up their second straight loss; Jones, falling 7-5 to Kim Pierce, who’d defeated Gail Roles 7-1 and Michelle Yim 7-3 to reach her and Hurst, defeated by Ellen Robinson, who’d eliminated Angie Payne 7-4 and Tam Trinh 7-2.
 
Robinson won the quarterfinal match that followed 7-3, but had her six-match, loss-side winning streak ended by Cortez 7-4 in the semifinals. By the same score, Cortez had her single-match, loss-side winning streak ended by Kraber in the finals, who claimed the event title.
 
Tour representatives thanked the ownership and staff at Fast Eddie’s as well as title sponsor Jerry Olivier Custom Cues and MZTam.com. The next stop on the Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour (#7), scheduled for the weekend of November 16-17, will be the tour’s Season Finale, hosted by Legends Billiards in League City, TX. 

Woodward wins 11 on the loss side, double dips Roberts in finals of 46th Annual Texas Open

Skyler Woodward (Erwin Dionisio)

There’s nothing that’ll let the air out of a competitive pool balloon faster than an early loss in a tournament with a lot of entrants. In a 128-entrant bracket, for example, a loss in the second round will almost double the number of matches you have to play to claim the event’s title. The winner and runner-up in such an event will have been there the same amount of time, but one of them will have played a lot more pool.
 
At the $4,000-added, Open 9-Ball Division of the 46th Annual Texas Open, held over Labor Day weekend (Aug. 28-Sept 2) that drew 128 entrants to Skinny Bob’s Billiards in Round Rock, TX, Josh Roberts played seven matches to claim the hot seat. He did not win the eighth match he needed to claim the title. Sky Woodward, though, patched up the ‘balloon’ that had burst in the second round, and ended up playing 15 matches; two on the winners’ side, 11 on the loss side and two in the true double elimination final that earned him the event title.
 
It was a very busy weekend in Round Rock. In addition to the Open 9-Ball Tournament, there was a 9-ball mini tournament (Wednesday night), a Jack ‘N Jill Scotch Doubles tournament that drew 16 teams (Thursday night), a Banks Ring Game (Friday night, in conjunction with the start of the Open 9-Ball), and a Women’s Open event (started Saturday night; separate story) that drew 32. It should be noted that the Jack N’ Jill Scotch Doubles title was shared by two teams; Co-tournament director James Davis, Sr. and long-time doubles partner Jennifer Kraber and a team made up of the Open winner (Woodward) and the Women’s event winner (Ming Ng).
 
Woodward’s winning campaign in the Open event opened on a promising note with a shutout over Donald Rock, but ran right into a double hill match against Alex Calderon, which shifted Woodward’s work to the loss side of the bracket. Roberts, in the meantime, worked his way through his first four opponents (Steven Butler, Jeremy Diggs, Tommy Vega and Ryan Hsu) by an aggregate score of 36-6. And then, like Woodward, Roberts ran into Alex Calderon, who battled Roberts to a deciding 17th game. Roberts dropped the final ball and advanced to a winners’ side semifinal against Justin Espinosa.
 
Meanwhile, John Gabriel, who’d defeated Kenneth Greer, Tommy Sanders, Al Mason and survived a double hill battle against Robb Saez, downed Ernesto Bayaua in a winners’ side quarterfinal to draw Kevin Guimond in the other winners’ side semifinal.
 
Roberts got into the hot seat match with a 9-3 win over Espinosa. Gabriel joined him after sending Guimond to the loss side 9-6. Roberts chalked up what proved to be his last match win with a 9-3 victory over Gabriel and waited in the hot seat for Woodward to finish his 11-match, loss-side winning streak.
 
It was Justin Espinosa who drew Woodward on the loss side. At that point, Woodward had already won eight of his 11 loss-side matches, including, most recently, victories over Bayaua and Hsu, both 9-3. Kevin Guimond drew Sean Black, who was on a loss-side run comparable to  Woodward’s. Black had lost his opening round match and embarked on a nine-match winning streak that eventually earned him the second-most wins in the event. He’d most recently eliminated Steve Sheppard 9-5 and spoiled any hopes Woodward was entertaining about a rematch against Calderon, by defeating Calderon, double hill.
 
Black’s loss-side streak came to an end when Guimond eliminated him 9-6. Woodward’s continued with his third straight 9-3 win, this one over Espinosa to advance to the quarterfinals.
 
Woodward chalked up two more 9-3 wins to earn a shot at Roberts in the hot seat. He downed Guimond in the quarterfinals and Gabriel in the semifinals. He chalked up his 6th 9-3 win in the opening set of the true double elimination final. He broke the pattern and won the second set 9=7 to claim the event title.
 
Co-tour directors James Davis, Sr. and John Palmore thanked Sue and John Cielo and their Skinny Bob’s Billiards staff, as well as Sleep Inn, Mints Amusement, and James Hanshew. They also acknowledged Ray Hansen and his PoolActionTV crew for the live stream of the event throughout the long weekend.

Ng goes undefeated to win Women’s Open Division of 46th Annual Texas Open

Ming Ng (Photo courtesy Jerry Olivier Pool Tour)

The two finalists at the $1,000-added Women’s Open Division of the 46th Annual Texas Open were coming off recent victories. Ming Ng had chalked up a win on the Gulf Coast Women’s Regional Tour in June, while her finals opponent, Taylor Hansen had won a Division I Pro event on the North American Pool Tour (NAPT) in mid-August. It was the second time in a little over two weeks that 20-year-old Taylor Hansen squared off against an opponent who’d been competing as long as she’d been alive. In August, Hansen defeated Eleanor Callado in the finals of the NAPT’s 4th Summer Classic. This time, though, the veteran prevailed. Ming Ng went undefeated through the field of 32, meeting and defeating Hansen in the finals to claim the event title.
 
Though Ng had a pair of relatively easy opening matches in this event, downing Nicole McDaniel and Tracie Voelkering, both 7-1, things tightened up pretty quickly. Robyn Petrosino managed more racks against her than Ng’s first two opponents combined (three), as Ng advanced to a winners’ side semifinal against Chris Fields. Ellen Robinson, in the meantime, who’d been challenged, double hill, by Courtney Peters in the opening round, shut out Michelle Abernathy in the second and sent Teresa Garland to the loss side 7-3 in the third, faced Taylor Hansen in the other winners’ side semifinal.
 
Both matches for advancement to the hot seat match went double hill, as did the hot seat match. It was Ng and Robinson who advanced as Hansen and Fields moved to the loss side. Ng claimed the hot seat, double hill, over Robinson and waited on Hansen’s return.
 
On the loss side, Chris Fields picked up Liz Galvan, who’d been defeated by Julia Rapp in the event’s opening round of play and was in the midst of a five-match, loss-side winning streak that was about to end, and had most recently included victories over Teresa Garland, double hill, and Kim Pierce 7-5. Taylor Hansen drew Jennifer Kraber, whom she’d faced at the end of the Texas Open’s Women's 10-Ball ring game. Kraber and Hansen ended up splitting 1st and 2nd in that event.  In the Women’s event, Kraber had been sent to the loss side by Chris Fields, double hill, in a winners’ side quarterfinal and then eliminated Nicole McDaniel 7-3 and Robyn Petrosino, double hill, to draw Hansen.
 
Fields advanced to the quarterfinals 7-2 over Galvan and was joined by Hansen, who’d defeated Kraber 7-5. Hansen then shut Fields out, advancing to a rematch against Robinson in the semifinals.
 
Hansen defeated Robinson 7-3 and came within a game of forcing a deciding match in the finals against Ng. Ng, though, edged out in front and won it 7-5 to claim the 46th Annual Texas Open Women’s title.
 
Co-tour directors James Davis, Sr. and John Palmore thanked Sue and John Cielo and their Skinny Bob’s Billiards staff, as well as Sleep Inn, Mints Amusement, and James Hanshew. They also acknowledged Ray Hansen and his PoolActionTV crew for the live stream of the event throughout the long weekend.

Sanders wins battle of the ‘Kims,’ goes undefeated to claim Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour stop #2

(l to r): Kim Sanders, Kim Pierce, Jennifer Kraber & Alicia Stanley

Fresh from their battles at the NAPT Div. II Championships in Phoenix, AZ last month (Feb. 21-24), Kims Sanders and Pierce signed on to stop #2 of the Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour (JOLT). Pierce was runner-up to Bethany Sykes in the NAPT event and Sanders finished in the tie for 17th. They met twice on the recent JOLT event, and Sanders won both times to claim the title. The $2,000-added event drew 42 entrants to Skinny Bob’s Billiards in Round Rock, TX.
 
They met first in a winners’ side semifinal, while Alicia Stanley and Audrey Araceli squared off in the other one. Sanders sent Pierce to the loss side 7-2 and in the hot seat match, faced Stanley, who’d sent Araceli over 7-1. Sanders claimed the hot seat in a double hill fight and waited on what turned out to be the return of Pierce.
 
On the loss side, Pierce picked up Angie Payne, who’d defeated Nicole McDaniel, double hill, and Michelle Cortez 7-5 to reach her. Araceli drew Jennifer Kraber, who’d eliminated Natalie Mans 7-6 and defeated Belinda Lee 7-2.
 
Pierce and Payne locked up in a double hill fight, eventually won by Pierce. She was joined in the quarterfinals by Kraber, who’d eliminated Araceli 7-3.
 
Pierce took the quarterfinal match 7-2 over Kraber, thereby spoiling a potential re-match nearly nine years in the making. In November 2010, Kraber (who won the inaugural JOLT event last March) and Kim Sanders battled in the finals of a stop on the Lone Star Billiards Tour, which became Sanders’ first and as far as we know, only victory on a regional tour (it should be noted that ‘as far as we know’ is not a definitive statement; our records are of events about which we have received information over the years. There are regrettably gaps in that information, but we do know they met at that event and Sanders did secure that event title).
 
Pierce moved on and secured her own rematch against Sanders with a 7-4 victory over Stanley in the semifinals. It was a true double elimination final, but Sanders kept it simple, winning the first and only set she needed 7-2 to claim what, according to our records, is only her second event title. The victory also qualified Sanders for an upcoming NAPT Div. II event in Sacramento, CA this coming June.
 
The Tour’s directing committee thanked the ownership and staff at Skinny Bob’s for their hospitality, as well as title sponsor Jerry Olivier Custom Cues and MZTam.com. The next stop on the Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour (#3), scheduled for the weekend of April 13-14, will be a $2,000-added event, hosted by Diamonds Sports Bar in Port Arthur, TX.