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Burrows wins (*) final stop on Tri-State’s 2018/2019 season, splits top two prizes with Joseph

(l to r): Joshua Joseph & Ashley Burrows

Ashley Burrows would go undefeated into the hot seat at the Tri-State Tour’s last event of the 2018/2019 season. Joshua Joseph would win six on the loss side of the bracket and earn the right to meet her in a final match. The two opted out of that final match, leaving Burrows, the undefeated occupant of the hot seat, as the official winner and Joseph, in his highest finish on the tour, as runner-up. The $1,000-added event drew 48 entrants to Clifton Billiards in Clifton, NJ.
 
Joseph, appearing in his eighth event of the 2018/2019 season, solidified his position among the D+ class of competitors. He finished the season in third place, guaranteeing him an invite to the year-ending Invitational Tournament. Though her (*) victory advanced Burrows among her fellow B class players, she was 400 points away from the 16-player cutoff point for an invite to the year-ending Invitational Tournament. That tournament, scheduled for the weekend of June 29-30, will feature the top 16 players from each of six divisions and crown a champion for each of them, as well as a Tri-State Tour Grand Champion, who, at the end of the 2017/2018 season, was Erick Carrasco.
 
Burrow’s path to the hot seat went through Joe Palone, survived a double hill battle against Paul Madonia, and sent Levie Lampaan and Paul Wilkens to the loss side, to draw Manny Gomez in one of the winners’ side semifinals. Bianca Martinez, in the meantime, well-positioned at #8 to earn an invite to the D+ event of the Invitational faced Rick Rodriguez in the other winners’ side semifinal.
 
Burrows and Martinez became the first women, in an ill-defined long time, to square off in the hot seat match of a Tri-State tournament. Burrows had sent Gomez to the loss side 7-5, as Martinez was busy sending Rodriguez west 7-1. Burrows claimed the hot seat over Martinez 8-6 in what would prove to be her last match.
 
On the loss side, Gomez and Rodriguez ran right into their second straight loss. Gomez drew Jason Goberdhan, who’d defeated Bob Toomey, double hill and Paul Wilkens 7-1 to meet and defeat Gomez 6-3. Rodriguez picked up Joshua Joseph, who was three matches into his six-match, loss-side winning streak and had most recently defeated the competitor who’d sent him to the loss side Marco Daniele 5-3 and shut out Ada Lio. He downed Rodriguez 7-4 to join Goberdhan in the quarterfinals.
 
Joseph defeated Goberdhan 7-3 in those quarterfinals and then, double hill, defeatEd Martinez in the semifinals. Joseph and Burrows agreed on the split and ended the regular 2018/2019 Tri-State Tour season. 
Tour representatives thanked the ownership and staff at Clifton Billiards, as well as sponsors Ozone Billiards, Sterling-Gaming, Kamui Tips, Phil Capelle, BlueBook Publishing, Human Kinetics, Pool & Billiards, Professor Q Ball, Bender Cues, and DIGICUE OB. The next scheduled Tri-State Tour event will be its annual Tri-State Invitational, scheduled for the weekend of June 29-30 and hosted by Steinway Billiards in Astoria (Queens), NY.

DaBreo chalks up undefeated day on the Tri-State

Raphael DaBreo, who had his best year on the Tri-State Tour in the 2011-2012 season, finishing at #10 among the tour’s A players, chalked up an early 2012-2013 win, going undefeated on the Tri-State Tour stop on Saturday, August 11. The $500-added, A-D handicapped event drew 35 entrants to Castle Billiards in East Rutherford, NJ. 

DaBreo had to get by 2011-2012’s #1-ranked B+ player, Ed Culhane, twice to claim the event title. They met first among the winners’ side final four, with DaBreo prevailing 7-4 to move into the hot seat match. He was met there by Sam Hoffman, who’d sent Dave Danchak west 6-2. DaBreo got into the hot seat with a 10-7 victory over Hoffman, and waited on Culhane’s return.

Culhane moved west and picked up Naldo Trancoso, who’d defeated Joe Palone 7-3 and John Trobiano 7-2. Danchak drew Mike Aro, who’d gotten by Paul Wilkins and Eddie Perez, both 6-3. Culhane got back into the swing of things with an 8-5 victory over Trancoso, but Danchak fell to Aro 6-3. 

In the quarterfinals that followed, Culhane ended Aro’s day with a 9-6 victory. He moved on to face Hoffman in the semifinals, and defeated him 11-8, for a second chance against DaBreo. DaBreo secured the event title, completing his undefeated run with a 7-3 victory over Culhane. 

Tour representatives thanked the ownership and staff of Castle Billiards for their hospitality, as well as sponsors Sterling-Gaming, Ozone Billiards, Poison Cues, Kamui Tips, Phil Capelle,  BlueBook Publishing, and Human Kinetics.

Robles freezes the Iceman to win third Predator Tour Open

Tony Robles

Tony Robles came back from a defeat in the hot seat match to best The Iceman, Mika Immonen, in the extended race-to-11 finals of a Predator Tour stop on Sunday, June 3. It marked the third time since February that the Silent Assassin had picked up a victory on his own tour. It was the second time this year that he and Immonen had squared off in the finals, with Immonen winning the battle to go undefeated in March. The $800-added June event drew 16 entrants to Raxx Pool Room in West Hempstead, NY.

Once Robles had sent Tony Liang west 7-2 and Immonen had dispatched Joe Landi to the loss side 7-4, the two convened their first meeting in the battle for the hot seat (Robles had to win five on the loss side to meet him in the finals back in March). Immonen prevailed 7-3 this time out and for the second time in three months, sat in the Predator Tour Open hot seat, awaiting an opponent.

On the loss side, Liang met up with Frankie Hernandez, who, after being sent west by Immonen, had shut out Marvin St. John and survived a double hill battle against Jeremy Sossei (third in the March event). Landi drew Rob Omen, who’d gotten by Pauli Caibano double hill and Joe Palone 7-5. Landi got right back to work, allowing Omen only a single rack and moving on to the quarterfinals against Hernandez, who’d ended Liang’s day 7-3.

In a quarterfinal match that would likely have befuddled odds makers, Landi downed Hernandez 7-4 and then put up a hell of a fight in the semifinals against Robles, taking the match to double hill. Robles prevailed, though, and got his second chance against Immonen.

Coming from the loss side, Robles had to reach nine games first to extend the match to 11. He did so, and went on to win 11-6 to capture his third Predator Tour title on the year.

Robles thanked the ownership and staff at Raxx Pool Room, and Dr. Louis Pannullo for a contribution of $300 in added money to the event. He also thanked Predator Cues, The National Amateur Pool League, Delta-13 racks, Poison Cues, PoolOnTheNet.com, and NYCGrind for their sponsorship of the event.

Chau gets by Palone twice to win his first Tri-State Tour stop

Tri V. Chau, Joe Palone and Richard Ng

Tri V. Chau opened his tournament bid on the Tri-State Tour on the weekend of May 19-20 with victories over two of the toughest females on the tour, followed it with a victory over the previous week’s winner, and got into the hot seat with two straight double hill wins. He concluded the campaign with a second victory over his hot seat opponent, Joe Palone, to complete an undefeated weekend, chalking up his first Tri-State Tour win. The $1,000-added B-D handicapped event drew 22 entrants to BQE Billiards in Jackson Heights, NY.

Chau started out on Saturday with a decisive 7-1 victory over the # 3-ranked female on the Tri-State Tour, Emily Duddy, and then survived a double hill battle against the # 1 female on the tour, Kim Meyer-Gabia. He then defeated Al Cacciola, who’d won the last tour stop, 7-4 and moved among the winners’ side final four to face Chris Karp. Palone, in the meantime, squared off against Richard Ng. In his second of three double hill wins, Chau sent Karp west, as Palone was busy surviving his own double hill match against Ng. In his last double hill win, Chau sent Palone to the semifinals and sat in the hot seat, awaiting his return.

On the loss side, Jaydev Zaveri defeated Luis Jimenez 6-4 and Carl Yusuf Khan 7-4 to pick up Karp. Ng drew Cacciola, who’d gotten by Ed Culhane 10-7 and Rick Shellhouse 6-1. Zaveri and Ng got right back on track, advancing to the quarterfinals with identical 7-3 victories over Karp and Cacciola. Following another 7-3 win, it was Ng moving on to face Palone in the semifinals.

Ng and Palone battled to double hill, before Palone prevailed for a second crack at Chau. The final matchup went back and forth, until Chau moved ahead to win by two, 7-5. He’d come close before – in January of 2010, when he finished second – but this was Chau’s first Tri-State Tour victory. 

Tour representatives thanked the ownership and staff of BQE Billiards for their cooperation and hospitality, as well as sponsors Sterling-Gaming, Ozone Billiards, Ron Tarr Cues, Kamui Tips, Phil Capelle, BlueBook Publishing, and Human Kinetics. The next stop on the Tri-State Tour will be a $1,000-added, B-D handicapped event, scheduled for May 26-27 at Amsterdam Billiards & Bar in New York City.

Falco comes from the loss-side to win A-D event on Predator Tour

Kevin Falco recovered from a defeat among the winners’ side final four and returned to challenge and defeat hot seat occupant, Elvis Rodriguez, in the A-D handicapped portion of the May 5-6 Predator Tour Stop. The $500-added amateur event drew 64 entrants to Gotham City Billiards in Brooklyn, NY.

It was Vincent Morris who sent Falco west 7-5 in the winners’ side semifinals, as Rodriguez was busy sending Joe Palone over, 7-4. Rodriguez moved into the hot seat with a 7-4 victory, and waited on Falco.

Falco moved over and picked up Aaron Moody, who’d gotten by Wilfredo Albay and Patrick Myers, both 7-4. Palone drew Mike Yednak, who’d defeated Steve Wright 7-3 and Junior Sanchez 7-5. Palone and Falco advanced to the quarterfinals; Palone with a 7-3 win over Yednak and Falco, 7-5 over Moody. 

Falco went on to win two straight double hill matches; over Palone in the quarterfinals and his re-match versus Morris in the semifinals. He completed his tournament bid with a 12-5 victory over Rodriguez in the finals.

Tour director Tony Robles thanked the ownership and staff at Gotham City Billiards, as well as sponsors Predator Cues, The National Amateur Pool League, Delta-13 racks, Poison Cues, PoolOnTheNet.com, and NYCGrind.

Baer comes from the loss-side to win Tri-State Tour stop

Arturo Reyes, Beau Baer and Tony Ignomirello

While the battle for the hot seat was a replay of the February 26 Tri-State semifinals at the same location – Tony Ignomirello versus Arturo Reyes – the finals of the April 22 Tri-State stop saw Beau Baer complete a seven-match trip on the loss side to meet and defeat Tony Ignomirello, who finished third in that earlier match. The $1,000-added, A-D handicapped event drew 22 entrants to the Cue Bar in Bayside, NY.

Baer survived a double hill battle against Joe Palone in the opening round of play, before being sent west by Stewart Warnock 7-4. Reyes and Ignomirello, in the meantime, moved among the winners’ side final four; Reyes, facing Keith Adamik and Ignomirello, squaring off against Ben Cataneros. Reyes downed Adamik 7-5, as Ignomirello was busy sending Cataneros west, double hill. Ignomirello sent Reyes to the semifinals versus Baer 7-5, and sat in the hot seat, waiting for his return.

Baer began his seven-match trip back to the finals with victories over Carl Yusuf Khan and Bogie Uzdecjzyk, before running into Warnock a second time. He then wreaked his vengeance on Warnock 7-5, and defeated Gary Murgia by the same score to meet up with Adamik. Castaneros drew Kim Meyer-Gabia, who’d gotten by Robert Jew 6-1 and battled to double hill, before prevailing in a match versus Yomaylin Feliz.

Baer eliminated Adamik 7-3, and in the quarterfinals, faced Meyer-Gabia, who’d survived a double hill battle over Castaneros. Baer defeated Meyer-Gabia 8-6 and completed his loss-side journey with a 7-5 victory over Reyes in the semifinals. 

Ignomirello jumped out to an early 4-0 lead in the finals, but Baer then chalked up 10 straight to reach the hill ahead of him. Ignomirello won the 15th rack, but Baer finished it immediately afterwards to capture the event title. 

Tour representatives thanked the ownership and staff at the Cue Bar for their hospitality, as well as sponsors Sterling-Gaming, Ozone Billiards, Ron Tarr Cues, Kamui Tips, Phil Capelle, BlueBook Publishing, and Human Kinetics. Next stop on the Tri-State Tour will be a $1,500-added, A-D handicapped event, scheduled for April 28, at Gotham City Billiards in Brooklyn, NY.

Chen gets by Duddy twice to go undefeated on Tri-State Tour

Emily Duddy and Quin Y Chen

Though he finished undefeated, at around 4 a.m. on a Sunday morning, Quin Y Chen’s journey to the winner’s circle of the Tri-State Tour stop on March 3, was not without its challenges; specifically, Emily Duddy, who met him, first, in the hot seat, and chalked up as many racks in the double hill battle against him as three of Chen’s four previous opponents combined. She’d return to challenge him again in the finals, and again, he prevailed to capture the event title. The $500-added, A-D handicapped event drew 55 entrants to Castle Billiards in East Rutherford, NJ.

After an opening round bye, Chen (racing to 6) faced four opponents to get into the hot seat match against Duddy, and didn’t give up more than three racks against any of them. He gave up two each to Eddie Perez and Cory Sohlman, before Michael Rodriguez managed three against him. He gave up two more among the winners’ side final four versus William Zarzour and moved into the hot seat match. Duddy, by contrast, (racing to 7, and in one case, 8) opened strong with a 7-1 victory over Chris Peralta, but got locked up in a second round, double hill fight against Bogie Uzdejcyzk. She survived that battle and then downed two Tri-State regulars, Ed Culhane (7-4) and Scott Simonetti (8-4), to join Chen among the winners’ side final four. She survived a second double hill fight against Steve Way 7-6 to face Chen in the battle for the hot seat. They faced each other for the first time, with an aggregate score total of 24-9 (Chen, 72%) to 36-21 (Duddy, 63%). 

Chen took an early lead in the hot seat battle, but Duddy fought back to knot things at double hill. A fateful decision on a 6-ball in the final game (difficult bank, or safe; she chose safe), left Chen with a difficult shot. A kick-bank dropped the 6-ball, and he ran out from there to claim the hot seat.

On the loss-side, Michael Rodriguez was in the midst of a four-game winning streak that would propel him into the semifinals versus Duddy. He got by George Osipovitch and Eddie DaCosta, both double hill, to draw Zarzour, coming over from the winners’ side final four. Steve Way drew Joe Palone, who’d defeated Culhane 7-3 and Simonetti 8-6. Rodriguez downed Zarzour 6-4, as Palone was eliminating Way 7-5. Rodriguez got his shot against Duddy with a 7-5 victory over Palone in the quarterfinals.

Rodriguez got off to a quick start in the semifinals against Duddy, advancing to the hill at six games, before Duddy mounted a comeback that eventually tied the match and then, won it. It was already 3 a.m. on Sunday morning, but Chen and Duddy opted to tough it out and play the final match. Chen won it 7-4 to take top honors.

Tour representatives thanked the ownership and staff at Castle Billiards, as well as sponsors Sterling-Gaming, Ozone Billiards, Ron Tarr Cues, Kamui Tips, Phil Capelle, BlueBook Publishing, and Human Kinetics.

Warnock comes from the loss-side to win Tri-State stop

Stewart Warnock capitalized on a continued series of winning matches on the loss-side to meet and defeat an idle-for-a-long-time hot seat occupant, Joe Palone, and capture the top prize in the Tri-State Tour stop on Saturday, February 11. The $500-added, A-D handicapped event drew 38 entrants to Castle Billiards in Edison, NJ.

After winning his first three matches, Warnock met up with Scott Simonetti, who sent him west with a 7-4 victory and moved on to face Palone among the winners’ side final four. Keith Diaz, in the meantime, squared off against Eddie Perez. Palone sent Simonetti over 7-5, as Diaz did likewise to Perez 6-4. A subsequent 7-5 win left Palone in the hot seat, and Diaz off to the semifinals for an eventual matchup against Warnock.

Warnock, now operating on the loss-side, survived two straight double hill battles, against Raphael DaBreo and William Horne to earn a rematch versus Simonetti. Perez picked up Dennis Kennedy, who’d eliminated Charles Bensen 6-5 and Chris DiCaprio 6-1. Perez dropped Kennedy into the tie for fifth place 6-4, as Warnock was busy exacting his revenge against Simonetti, by the same score, 7-4, Simonetti had chalked up in their earlier match. 

Warnock moved on to the quarterfinals against Perez, and after defeating him 8-3, got locked up in a double hill struggle versus Diaz; his third of five loss-side matches. He prevailed to take on Palone in the finals. Warnock’s continuous loss-side activity squared off against Palone’s two-hour wait for the final match. Warnock took an early lead, and though Palone showed signs of warming up to the task, it was too little, too late. Warnock hung on to win 9-5 to earn top honors.

Tour representatives thanked the ownership and staff of Castle Billiards, as well as sponsors Sterling-Gaming, Ozone Billiards, Ron Tarr Cues, Kamui Tips, Phil Capelle, BlueBook Publishing, and Human Kinetics.

Palone gets by Mackin twice to go undefeated on Tri-State Tour

Randy Mackin, Joe Palone and Rick Shellhouse

They battled first for the hot seat, and again, in the finals. Both times, Joe Palone came out on top to complete an undefeated day on the Tri-State Tour. Double tour ranking points were offered to the 41 participants who signed on to the $750-added, A-D handicapped event on Saturday, January 28, which was hosted by Port Richmond Billiards in Staten Island, NY.

Following victories over Rajesh Vannala, Joe Landi and two straight double hill wins over Joe Landi and Paul Spaanstra, Palone moved among the winners’ side final four to take on Rhio Anne (Annie) Flores. Mackin, in the meantime, squared off against Tony Ignomirello. Palone sent Flores west 7-2, as Mackin was busy defeating Ignomirello 6-3. The first of their two battles, for the hot seat, proved to be the most competitive, as they fought back and forth to double hill before Palone prevailed.

Flores moved to the loss side and picked up Vannala, who’d defeated Spaanstra 7-4 and prevailed in a double hill match against Gary Murgia to reach her. Ignomirello drew Rick Shellhouse, who’d gotten by Mike Davie 6-4 and Ben Castaneros 6-3. Vannala then ended Flores’ day with a 7-4 win, and moved into the quarterfinals against Shellhouse, who’d given up only a single rack in his match against Ignomirello.

It was Shellhouse advancing to the semifinals against Mackin, with an 8-6 win over Vannala. Mackin, though, ended Shellhouse’s loss-side run with a 6-2 win in those semifinals to earn a second chance against Palone. Though Mackin opened the finals with a single victory, Palone put a stop to any ideas of another double hill battle, and won seven of the next nine, to complete his undefeated day.

Tour representatives thanked Gary Murgia for his efforts in ensuring a great environment for the tournament, as well as sponsors Sterling-Gaming, Ozone Billiards, Ron Tarr Cues, Kamui Tips, Phil Capelle, BlueBook Publishing, and Human Kinetics. The next Tri-State event, a $1,000-added, C/D event at Gotham City Billiards in Brooklyn, NY, is scheduled for Saturday, February 4.

Gabia goes undefeated on Tri-State Tour

Ron Gabia went into the Saturday, January 14 stop on the Tri-State Tour, third in the 2011-2012 tour rankings in his B+ class. He went undefeated when, by mutual agreement, he did not have to face Ed Culhane in the finals. Culhane, who entered the tournament in first place in those B+ rankings, had been sent west by Joe Palone in the opening round, and won nine straight before agreeing to a split of the top prizes, and ceding the first place finish to Gabia. The $500-added, A-D handicapped event drew 47 entrants to Castle Billiards in East Rutherford, NJ.

With Culhane battling in the west bracket, Gabia advanced to the winners’ side final four to face Palone, who’d sent Culhane over. Cory Sohlman, in the meantime, squared off against George Osipovitch. Palone battled Gabia to double hill before giving way to send Gabia to the hot seat match, as Sohlman defeated Osipovitch 6-1. Gabia, in what proved to be his final match, didn’t give up a single rack in his hot seat victory over Sohlman.

Palone’s first opponent on the loss-side was a re-match versus Culhane, with four victories behind him, including a 7-4 win over Brian Jeziorski and a 7-5 victory over Annie Flores. Osipovitch drew Ed Dacosta, who’d gotten by Bernie Vogelsang 6-2 and Rick Shellhouse 6-5. Culhane made it five straight with a 7-5 rematch victory over Palone, while Dacosta moved to join him in the quarterfinals with a 6-2 win over Osipovitch. 

Culhane defeated Dacosta 7-6 and in his last match of the day, downed Sohlman 8-5 in the semifinals. It was early AM Sunday when Gabia and Culhane opted to split the top prizes, and award Gabia the 1st place finish.

Tour representatives thanked the staff and management of Castle Billiards for their hospitality, as well as sponsors Sterling-Gaming, Ozone Billiards, Ron Tarr Cues, Kamui Tips, Phil Capelle, BlueBook Publishing, and Human Kinetics. The Tri-State’s next stop, a $750-added, double points event, is scheduled for Saturday, January 28 at the Port Richmond Billiard Club on Staten Island, NY.