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McMinn goes undefeated to win 4th Annual Royce Bunnell Memorial Tournament

Gary Abood, Shane McMinn and Randy Staggs

As it turned out, both finalists in the 4th Annual Royce Bunnell Memorial Tournament, held over the long weekend of December 13-15, were looking to boost their 2019 resume; one, by chalking up only his second (recorded) victory of the year and the other, with a first (recorded) cash finish anywhere in over two years. Given the date, it was likely to be their last 2019 tour/event victory and/or cash finish. Shane McMinn, who went undefeated to claim the title, had won the DFW 9-Ball Tour’s season opener back in January. For runner-up Gary Abood, the Bunnell Memorial became his first (recorded) cash finish in any event since he finished 4th at the inaugural Scotty Townsend Memorial 9-Ball Tournament in March of 2017. The $2,000-added Bunnell Memorial, organized and sponsored by OB Cues, drew 68 entrants to the Billiard Den in Richardson, TX.
Shane McMinn’s path to the winners’ circle opened with a bye and three straight matches in which he allowed his opponent – in order, Greg Sandifer, Noel Villalobos and Isaac Wooten – only a single rack. McMinn advanced to down Ryan Robinson 7-3 and draw his first match against Abood in a winners’ side semifinal. Abood had arrived after chalking up one 7-2 victory over Alberto Nieto and three, 7-3 wins over Jason Judd, Billy Pinion and Corey Flud. Randy Staggs, in the meantime, squared off against Steve Raynes in the other winners’ side semifinal.
Staggs got into the hot seat match with a 7-4 win over Raynes. Abood chalked up twice as many racks against McMinn in the winners’ side semifinal than all of McMinn’s previous opponents combined, necessitating a 13th deciding rack. McMinn dropped the last 9-ball and moved on to the hot seat match. McMinn returned to form, allowing Staggs only a single rack as he claimed the hot seat.
On the loss side, Raynes picked up Gerardo Perez, who’d lost his opening match to TJ Davis and was in the midst of an eight-match, loss-side winning streak that would take him as far as the quarterfinals and had most recently included victories over Ryan Robinson 7-5 and, in a successful rematch, TJ Davis, 7-4. Abood drew Juan Parra, who was in the midst of a seven-match, loss-side winning streak that was about to end and had included recent victories over Jeff Sullivan 7-3 and Walter Huenerfuerst 7-2.
Abood and Perez advanced to the quarterfinals with identical 7-5 victories over Parra and Raynes, respectively. Abood then ended Perez’ loss-side winning streak 7-4 in those quarterfinals and earned a second shot against McMinn with a 7-4 victory over Staggs in the semifinals. 
Unlike their double hill, winners’ side semifinal match, the finals saw McMinn return, once again, to the form that ultimately earned him the event title. He gave up two racks to Abood in the 7-2 finals, ending with an aggregate score of 35-15; a 70% winning percentage. To Abood’s credit, his runner-up finish came as the result of having won just over half of the racks that McMinn had lost. 
McMinn and Abood figured prominently in two other events that were part of the 9-Ball Royce Bunnell Memorial. The weekend began with a 32-entrant, 8-Ball Mini Tournament, which was won by Gary Abood with OB Cues President Jesse Garcia as the event’s runner-up. There was also a Banks Ring (Chip style) Tournament, won by McMinn, with Jeff Sullivan finishing as runner-up and Chris “Woody” Smith in 3rd place. 
David “Doc” Reyes, Customer Service Manager for OB Cues, who’s been the main promoter and ‘head of the spear’ in the organization of this annual memorial event, along with the President of OB Cues, Jesse Garcia and CEO Mark Griffin (both of whom competed) thanked Marci Rothberg and her Billiard Den staff for their hospitality, as well as sponsors (representatives), OB Cues, Fort Worth Billiards Superstore (Albert Trujillo), John Eagle Honda Dallas (JP Kinman, GM), Outville Racks (Chris Renfro), Granite Guyz and Dallas 8-Ball League. Reyes and Jennifer Hooten directed the event, while RackemTV sponsored the stream with commentary by Billy Guy and Marc Gonzalez as commentators. 

Record Attendance at APA Poolplayer Championships

9-Ball Shootout Black Tier Champion Dustin Gunia

World’s Largest Pool League Awards More Than $750,000


Poolplayers looking for yet another opportunity to make it to Vegas are finding their way there by competing in the APA Poolplayer Championships.  More than 2,500 players made their way to the Westgate Resort & Casino in Las Vegas in early May for APA’s annual spring event.
Poolplayers from 49 states and two countries competed for nearly $750,000 in five events: the 8-Ball Classic, 9-Ball Shootout, 8 and 9-Ball Doubles Championships and the Wheelchair Championship.
After five days of nearly non-stop action, 12 new champions had cemented their poolplaying legacy by taking home an APA title.
The final round of the 9-Ball Shootout featured four championship matches, one for each Skill Level Tier, with two shooters in each tier competing for $10,000 in cash and prizes. 
In the Green Tier, Robbie Schreckengost of Kearneysville, W.V., defeated Donavan Balan of Hacienda Heights, Calif. In the White Tier, Bryan Marcum of Worthington, Ohio, defeated Shareef Chandler-El of Schaumburg, Ill.  In the first year of the newly added Gray Tier, Edward Arciniega of National City, Calif., defeated Terry Lecreux of Toronto.  In the Black Tier, Dustin Gunia of Omaha, Neb., defeated William Gallagher Jr. of Atco, N.J. 
Each of the three Champions received a cash and prize package worth $10,000.  Runners-Up in each tier took home a prize package worth $5,000.
Jerry Brown of St. Petersburg, Fla., received the Sportsmanship Award in the 9-Ball Shootout.
More than 4,000 poolplayers made it to the Regional Level of the 9-Ball Shootout before the field was whittled down to the 483 who advanced to Las Vegas.
Nearly 6,000 players throughout North America qualified for Regional competition in the 8-Ball Classic, with 692 of them advancing to the championships.
In the finals of the 8-Ball Classic, five champions each took home a cash and prize package worth $15,000 for their performances.
In the Blue Tier, Karla Garcia of Miami, Fla., defeated Noemi Rodriguez of Chicago, Ill.  In the Yellow Tier, Jesse Garcia of Joliet, Ill., defeated Christian Delgado of Winter Springs, Fla.  In the Red Tier, Lawrence Samuel of Ocala, Fla., defeated Garrett Hogue of Forney, Texas.  In the Orange Tier, Nazario Aguilar of Chicago, Ill., defeated James Sevion of Montgomery, Ala.  In the Purple Tier, Abrin Schaad of Pekin, Ill., defeated David Barnes of Denton, Md.
First Place winners received cash and prizes worth $15,000.  Each Runner-Up received cash and prizes worth $9,000.
Shannon Peek of Sealy, Texas, won the Sportsmanship Award in the 8-Ball Classic.
In the 8-Ball Doubles Championship, Swamp Donkeys – Ralph Serode and Jeff Waterman– of Taunton, Mass., defeated Drunk Tank – Scott Esposito and Vince Boettger– of Chicago, Ill.  The victory earned them a $5,000 payday.  As Runners-Up, Drunk Tank took home $3,000.
In the 9-Ball Doubles Championship, PFLS – David Griffin and Henry Sevcik– of Fayetteville, N.C., defeated Kidless in Vegas – Brittany Blomlie and Wes Mancil– of Ocala, Fla.  The victory earned them a $3,500 payday.  As Runners-Up, Kidless in Vegas took home $2,300.
In the finals of the Wheelchair Championship, Charlie Hans of Harrison, Ohio, defeated Earl Hessbrook of Spring Branch, Texas, to take home $2,000 in prize money.  Hessbrook received $1,200 as the Runner-Up.
The final of each championship round was live-streamed (courtesy of PoolDawg) and can be viewed online at
The APA, based in Lake Saint Louis, Mo., sanctions the world’s largest amateur pool league, known as the APA Pool League throughout the United States, and as the Canadian Pool League in Canada.  Nearly 250,000 members compete in weekly 8-Ball and 9‑Ball League play.  The APA is generally recognized as the Governing Body of Amateur Pool, having established the official rules, championships, formats and handicap systems for the sport of amateur billiards.
The APA produces four major tournaments each year—the APA World Pool Championships, the APA Poolplayer Championships, the APA Junior Championships and the U.S. Amateur Championship—that, together, pay out nearly $2 Million in cash and prizes annually!
The APA and its championships are sponsored by Aramith, Action Cues, PoolDawg and Valley-Dynamo.
For more information on the APA Poolplayer Championships, visit