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Jerry Briesath and Dennis Orcollo Elected to Billiard Congress of America Hall of Fame

The Billiard Congress of America (BCA) Hall of Fame will welcome a world champion and one of the game’s most revered teachers to the Hall of Fame Class of 2022. The United States Billiard Media Association (USBMA) today announced that Filipino star Dennis Orcollo and legendary instructor Jerry Briesath have earned induction into the sport’s most prestigious club.

Orcollo, 43, was the clear choice of voters in the Greatest Players category and will be the fourth player representing the Philippines to be inducted into the BCA Hall of Fame, joining Pinoy legends Efren Reyes, Francisco Bustamante and Jose Parica.

Briesath, 85, was a unanimous selection in the Meritorious Service category. The longtime and legendary instructor is considered the father of formal billiard instruction in America, having helped develop and guide the program from concept to its current roster of more than 300 professional instructors across the globe.

Orcollo and Briesath will formally be inducted into the Hall of Fame on Friday, Nov. 4, at the Norfolk Sheraton Waterside Hotel in Norfolk, Va., in conjunction with the 2022 International Open pool tournament.

“Wow!” Orcollo said from his home in the Philippines, where he is awaiting a meeting with U.S. Immigration authorities to petition his return to action in U.S. tournaments. “I never really thought I would be in the Hall of Fame. This is a great award.

“I’m not Efren Reyes,” he laughed. “He is one of the greatest ever. I don’t think of myself that way, so I never really thought about it.”

For Briesath, an active pro player in the 1960’s and ’70s, the award is validation of years of service to players and the sport.

“This is just super,” Briesath said. “The Hall of Fame is about having the admiration of people in the sport and in the industry for what you’ve done. I’ve been to almost all of the Hall of Fame banquets and it was always wonderful to see great players and good people get recognized.”

A longtime poolroom owner in Madison, Wis., Briesath helped launch the BCA Certified Instructor Program (now known as the Professional Billiard Instructors Association) in 1992 and the BCA Summer Youth Cue Camps in 1993. He was awarded the BCA President’s Award in 1997 for his ongoing efforts to improve how players learn to play. He later helped create the BCA “How to Play Pool Right” book and video.

In addition to claiming the World Pool-Billiard Association (WPA) World 8-Ball Championship in 2011, Orcollo (known in pool circles as “Robocop”) won the BCA Open 9-Ball Championship (2007), Qatar World Open (2008), World Pool Masters (2010), and the China Open (2012).  He has been a dominant force at the annual Derby City Classic, winning the 9-Ball division twice (2011, 2017), the Banks division twice (2014, 2020), and the Master of the Table crown twice (2017, 2020). He holds major titles in 8-ball, 9-ball, straight pool, 10-ball, one-pocket and banks.

Voting for the 2022 BCA Hall of Fame was conducted by the USBMA Hall of Fame Board, which consists of USBMA members, elected At-Large members and living members of the Hall of Fame. In his third year on the ballot, Orcollo was named on 34 submitted ballots (80%). Holland’s Niels Feijen was named on 25 ballots (60%), while American Corey Deuel was named on 15 ballots (39%). Jeremy Jones, JoAnn Mason-Parker, John Schmidt, Vivian Villarreal and Charlie Williams completed the 2022 ballot. To be eligible for consideration in the Greatest Players category, a player (a) must be 40 years old by Jan. 1 of the year of their inclusion on the ballot; (b) must have a professional playing career of at least 10 years; and (c) must have recorded significant achievements in U.S.-based and international events recognized by the BCA.

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Jayson Shaw Achieves Record Straight Pool High Run

Jayson Shaw

The Billiard Congress of America would like to formally congratulate Jayson Shaw on his 14.1 exhibition high run of 669 balls, breaking John Schmidt’s record of 626 balls.

On January 18, 2022 Jayson Shaw after 5 days and 122 attempts in which Shaw produced high runs of 380, 397, 407 and 714 set the new 14.1 exhibition straight pool high run record.

Shaw’s record-breaking run, recorded on video, lasted 2 hours and 39 minutes. After review of the unedited video by a BCA committee of 5 people it was noted that on the 45th ball, Jayson Shaw inadvertently touched an object ball.

After another BCA rules and regulations committee meeting, it was determined in order to maintain the integrity of this and future high-run attempts that the World-Standardized Rules for tournaments of all ball fouls should and would be noted. As such, the Billiard Congress of America has certified and is proud to acknowledge Jayson Shaw’s 669 run as the new 14.1 exhibition record.

Jayson Shaw’s new high run record was played at Street Light Billiards Academy in Alexandria, Virginia, with an all-wood Peri Cue, Kamui chalk and a Kamui glove and played on an unheated 4.5’ x 9’ Brunswick Gold Crown III pocket billiard table on Green Simonis 760 cloth with 4.9” corner pocket openings and 5.3” side pocket openings. Shaw used Aramith TV Tournament pool balls, with a perma-rack and a standard 14.1 outline on the cloth. The host of the event, Bobby Chamberlain of The Legends of Pocket Billiards stated, “It was incredible to see Jayson firing one ball after the other in such a short period of time.”

The Billiard Congress of America is currently in the process of producing a guideline document that will establish parameters and standards for future exhibition 14.1 high run record attempts. For more information about this guideline document please contact the Billiard Congress of America.

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Shaw Stellar On His Way To Final 16 In Predator World 10-Ball Championship

Jayson Shaw

Scotland’s Jayson Shaw has been busy during the opening third of 2022.

He began the new year by winning yet another Turning Stone Classic – his seventh career victory at the event – and earned over $22,000 at the Derby City Classic a couple of weeks later, finishing second in Master of the Table honors to Fedor Gorst by mere points. In between these tournaments, Shaw made his way to Virginia and broke John Schmidt’s record for straight pool, pocketing consecutive 714 balls.

As he now heads into the final day of competition at the Predator World 10-Ball Championship, the reigning Mosconi Cup Most Valuable Player appears to again be in top form. Needing two victories to qualify for the final 16 knockout phase, Shaw delivered a knockout of his own, shutting out Billiard Congress of America Hall of Famer Thorsten Hohmann, 8-0. Playing again hours later against Jonas Souto, the Scotsman again made the game look easy as he disposed of the Spaniard at the Rio All-Suites Hotel and Casino.

Hohmann, who turned in a top-10 finish at the 192-player Alfa Las Vegas Open last weekend, struggled from the start as he failed to pocket a ball on the break twice and missed a 4 ball in the third game. Shaw took full advantage, building an early 3-0 advantage that just continued to snowball. Holding a suffocating 7-0 lead, Shaw failed to pocket a ball on the break and it appeared Hohmann was about climb onto the scoreboard. As he worked his way through the rack, the former World 9-Ball champion missed a 5 ball in the corner pocket and handed a wide-open table back to Shaw, who closed the rack to finish out the shutout.

Facing Spaniard Souto in his second match of the day, Shaw used solid shot making along with stellar safety play which gave his opponent fits, as the former International Open champion won six of the first seven games in the race-to-10 match. After Souto took advantage of a couple of openings left by Shaw to narrow the deficit, the Spaniard had a chance to narrow cut into the lead more in the 11th game but scratched after pocketing the 1 ball. Shaw cleared the table, then took advantage of a foul and another miss by his opponent in subsequent racks to close out the match, 10-3.

Also exhibiting a dominating performance on Thursday was defending champion Eklent Kaci, who ran away early in his match against Alex Pagulayan – thanks in large part to a tardiness gaffe by the BCA Hall of Famer.

After arriving 10 minutes late for the start of his match, Pagulayan was issued a two-game penalty – one for every five minutes that he was late – which spotted his opponent a 2-0 advantage. After the Filipino missed shots in the first and third games played and Kaci added a break-and-run, the Albanian had increased his lead to 5-0. Pagulayan cobbled together a couple of wins after Kaci jumped the cue ball off of the table in the seventh game but lost momentum when he rolled the cue ball behind the 8 ball while attempting to secure position on the 7 ball.

After missing the shot, Kaci finished off the rack to increase his lead to 8-2, then took advantage of a dry break by his opponent to climb onto the hill. After Pagulayan added on another rack to cut the lead to 9-3, Kaci again ran out the rack in the 13th game when his opponent again failed to pocket a ball on the break.

The evening’s round of 32 competition concluded with a Turn Back the Clock matchup between two undefeated Hall of Famers, Mika Immonen and Darren Appleton, who struggled at times with shot making and but gutted out a 10-5 victory.

After splitting the first four racks, Appleton took advantage of back-to-back dry breaks and a pair of missed shots by his opponent to win four out of five games and build a commanding 7-3 lead. The Englishman had a chance climb onto the hill at 9-3 but missed a makeable 10 ball in the corner pocket. Immonen cleared the table to cut the deficit to 8-4 and added another win in the 11 rack, but breaks and runs by Appleton in the 10th and 12th rack sealed the deal.

With the final 16 set, competition will resume tomorrow at 10 a.m. local time with eight matches, including Naoyuki Oi meeting Chris Reinhold; Lee Vann Corteza facing Kaci; Daniel Maciol matching up against Edgie Geronimo and Wojciech Szewczyck squaring off against Denis Grabe. Other notable matches include Mieszko Fortunski tangling with Sanjin Pehlivanovic and Shaw taking on Francisco Sanchez-Ruiz, who advanced to the round of 32 by defeating World Pool Masters champion Alex Kazakis in a hill-hill battle.

The Predator World 10-Ball Championship runs March 28-April 1 and also taking place is The Alfa Women’s Las Vegas Open, which runs March 30-April 2.

The events coincide with the CueSports International Expo, which brings thousands of amateur pool players for the BCA Pool League World Championships as well as the USA Pool League National Championships.

Find the Predator World 10-Ball Championship brackets with live scores on the Predator Pro Billiard Series website.

The Predator World 10-Ball Championship is streamed for free on Billiard TV and the World Billiard TV YouTube channel.

Go to Billiard TV to watch 24/7 Billiard Videos on any device

Follow @probilliardseries on Facebook, @probilliardseries on Instagram or @PBilliardSeries on Twitter to follow the events.

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Kuwait’s Al Shaheen Guts Out Wins to Stay Alive at Predator World 10-Ball Championship

Omar Al Shaheen

Omar Al Shaheen’s Wednesday had more twists and turns than a bag of gummi worms.

Just when he looked out of it, he’d bounce back just in time to pull off a win. Just when he appeared a lock to close out a match, the Kuwaiti who finished second to Albin Ouschan at last year’s World Pool Championships stumbled, stammered and allowed his opponent back into the match.

Despite the extra drama, Al Shaheen pulled off a come-from-behind as well as a nearly-blew-it win to advance in the World 10-Ball

Championships at the Rio All-Suites Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, defeating Roberto Gomez and Ping-Chung Ko in hill-hill battles on the one-loss side. The Kuwaiti will now play Chris Reinhold Thursday at noon.

Facing Gomez in an 11 a.m. local time match, the two competitors split the first 10 games thanks to a handful of safety exchanges paired with an occasional missed shot. After Gomez tacked on two victories to build a 7-5 advantage and move to within a game of advancing, Al Shaheen broke and ran to cut the lead to a game then used a victorious safety battle to gut out another win and tie the score. As two competitors again traded safeties in the deciding 15th rack, Gomez committed a foul and gave his opponent a wide-open table, which the Kuwaiti took full advantage of by pocketing the remaining balls and sneaking out with an 8-7 win.

Playing against Ko later in the evening, the 2019 World 10-Ball champion turned a missed shot by his opponent into an early 3-1 lead until a missed shot of his own. Suddenly it was Al Shaheen who could do no wrong, mixing in shot making and safety play to win five straight racks and build a 6-3 advantage. Ko would use a missed 8 ball by his opponent to steal a win but Al Shaheen returned serve with a win of his own to climb onto the hill, 7-4. Much like Al Shaheen in his previous match, Ko refused to go away quietly, breaking and running to cut the deficit to 7-5, then taking advantage of a 7 ball which Al Shaheen left on the corner pocket’s shelf to cut the lead to 7-6.

After a lengthy safety exchange in the 14th game, Al Shaheen left another opening for his opponent when he committed a foul by failing to touch a rail with a ball while attempting a safety. Ko cleared the table again to tie the score at 7-7 and send the match to a deciding 15th game in which Al Shaheen had the break. The Kuwaiti pocketed a ball on the opening shot and left the cue ball and 1 ball aligned perfectly for a textbook run out, which Al Shaheen completed to escape near-collapse, 8-7.

While the pool population continues to learn about Al Shaheen and his game, spectators have been familiar with Billiard Congress of America Hall of Famer Darren Appleton for nearly two decades. Wednesday afternoon, Appleton defeated John Schmidt, 8-4, to advance to the final 32, part of a continued recent resurgence by the Englishman that’s seen him place in the top 10 of last month’s Wisconsin Open as well as earn a runner-up finish in last year’s World Cup of Pool as he

The two competitors battled missed shots and open opportunities throughout the match as they split the first eight games evenly. Appleton claimed the ninth rack to take a 5-4 lead and his opponent left a window of opportunity in the next game when he kicked at the 2 ball, allowing the Hall of Famer to pocket the ball then use a safety on the 3 ball to close out the rack and increase his lead to two games. He added another win when Schmidt failed to pocket a ball on the break in the 11th rack then used another safety exchange after the break to close out the match.

Meanwhile, 19-year-old Eric Roberts of Tennessee and Yukio Akagariyama pulled two of the biggest upsets of the tournament Wednesday afternoon. Roberts defeated former World 9-Ball Champion Niels Feijen, 8-4, and Akagariyama took down reigning Ohio Open champion Mario He, 8-5. So, it only made sense that the two of them meet up in the next round.

It turned out to be a match where both struggled to find their top games throughout the match until the end, with Roberts gutting out an 8-7 victory. The two young competitors took turns trading missed balls and chances throughout the match as neither held a lead of more than one game throughout. With Roberts clinging to an 7-6 advantage, Akagariyama broke and ran to tie the match at seven games apiece. Roberts, who had been struggling with shot making throughout the match, saved his best for last, breaking and methodically running the balls off of the table to secure an 8-7 victory.

In other matches of note, Shane Van Boening remained undefeated by defeating Roland Garcia in a hill-hill match and Skyler Woodward was eliminated from the tournament by Max Eberle, 8-7.  Pijus Labutis eliminated reigning World Pool Champion Albin Ouschan, 8-2, and Poland’s Mieszko Fortunski took down Jesus Atencio, 8-4.

Competition resumes today at 10 a.m. local times with notable matches including Alex Kazakis meeting Francisco Sanchez Ruiz, Pin-Yi Ko squaring off with Sharik Sayed and Jung-Lin Chang facing Alex Pagulayan.

The Predator World 10-Ball Championship runs March 28-April 1 and still to come is The Alfa Women’s Las Vegas Open, which runs March 30-April 2.

The events coincide with the CueSports International Expo, which brings thousands of amateur pool players for the BCA Pool League World Championships as well as the USA Pool League National Championships.

Find the Predator World 10-Ball Championship brackets with live scores on the Predator Pro Billiard Series website.

The Predator World 10-Ball Championship is streamed for free on Billiard TV and the World Billiard TV YouTube channel.

Go to Billiard TV to watch 24/7 Billiard Videos on any device

Follow @probilliardseries on Facebook, @probilliardseries on Instagram or @PBilliardSeries on Twitter to follow the events.

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Shaw Breaks 14.1 World Record With 714 Ball Run

Jayson Shaw Photo: Pete Marovich/American Reportage

In March of 1954, Willie Mosconi ran 526 balls during an exhibition match in Springfield, Ohio. After pocketing that 526th ball, the great Mosconi unscrewed his cue and called it a day. Sixty-five years later, that record was broken by US Open 9-Ball Champion John Schmidt when he ran 626 balls during an attempt to break the longstanding record. Less than three years later, the bar has been set even higher after “Eagle Eye” Jayson Shaw ran 714 on January 18th as part of the Legends of Pocket Billiards 14.1 High Run challenge at the Street Lights Billiards Academy in Alexandria, Virginia.

Legends of Pocket Billiards founder Bobby Chamberlain was the man to make all of this happen, as he combined his love for 14.1 Straight Pool with an assist from Street Lights owner Deon Chapman. “I love pool itself. I’ve been wanting to put something together special for 20 years” said Chamberlain. “I’ve played a lot of straight pool. What would happen if we let top players finish their runs and really see what they can do. Other events always got stopped because of time constraints. So let’s see what happens if these runs had the chance to continue. Mosconi used to run 100 or 150 in an exhibition and then quit. What could he have ran if he had a chance to continue all of those runs” he continued.

The final part of the challenge came together with local player Deon Chapman opened up his private academy, The Street Lights Billiards Academy. “I finally had a facility to get it done” said Chamberlain. With Chapman on board for “whatever you want to do”, Chamberlain started reaching out to players.

Shaw was not the first top pro to visit Street Lights Billiards Academy to take a swing at breaking Schmidt’s record. Shane van Boening was the first when he spent a week in Virginia shooting for the record back in November. The best that the South Dakota Kid could do though, was a run of 308.

Russian World Champion Ruslan Chinahov was next and he also came up short, not able to score a run higher than 300 in November.

Earl Strickland combined exhibitions with attempts to break the record over five days, but could only manage a run of 238 balls.

Jayson Shaw was scheduled to give it a try back in December but taking his place as Most Valuable Player at the Mosconi Cup again was a higher priority. “I saw Shane and Earl try it, and Bobby was asking me to go. I didn’t have time after Mosconi Cup so I canceled the trip” said Shaw. After seeing Chamberlain in January at the Turning Stone Classic, Jayson re-scheduled a five-day attempt to break the record.

“I wanted to play for 10 days, but I only had 5 days with Derby coming up” Shaw explained. “I was
trying to play 12-13 hours a day to get it done. On the first day, I had over five 200 ball runs. Lots of big runs, but I kept getting stuck in weird situations. I’d get jammed in the stack or stuck on a ball” he said.

Shaw said he started seeing things more clearly on day two and he started running balls like he knew he was capable of, but he still kept coming up short. The longest run that Shaw could muster over his five days was 407 balls and Shaw had to get back home. “He was done trying,” said Chamberlain. “We went to eat and Jayson said he thought he was close but he didn’t want to miss getting his daughter to school.”

“I couldn’t keep going. My body was sore. I thought maybe I just need to come back another time” said Shaw. Stopping for dinner on the way home, Shaw had what would be an important conversation with his wife Ara. “I felt like I was right there. I thought when I get to 30, it will all change” he reached out to Chamberlain to try one more day. “Jayson texted and said he wanted to try it for one more night. I couldn’t stand it. He wanted to run 500”

Shaw ran eleven racks in his first attempt (154 balls) but missed his break ball. Then it happened. “I didn’t know he was keeping track, but when he made 527 he stopped and celebrated, “ said Chamberlain. “I was just worried that I might have kept the wrong score. I hoped he would just keep running. Jayson knew it and he was the one who celebrated”. “I was always keeping track of the score. Even if I don’t want to see it, it’s right there at my feet. I saw it every time I walked back to the chair,” said Shaw.

As the balls kept falling, the records were toppled. “626 was not his only target,” Chamberlain said.

“At 680 or 690, the way the balls were opening up, I thought I could run 1,000,” said Shaw. “I had already beat all the numbers that were out there. There was no pressure and I was free stroking. I broke the balls open at 714 and the cue ball went through the stack, bottom rail, and the length of the table to scratch. If that doesn’t go, who knows what I could run”.

Shaw commented after he got back home and got his daughter to school, “I don’t think it has really sunk in what I did. I felt drunk after I finished. It feels like it was five days of torture. I have blisters on my fingers and my feet, and I slept for twelve hours when I got home”.

Chamberlain has made a public statement regarding the video of this amazing run: “We have a perfect unedited original high-definition recording that is secure and ready for the BCA to validate and certify, this is our first objective. Once that task is complete, we will look at the best options to showcase this world record-breaking run to the world.”

Chamberlain says that Shaw’s record-breaking run is not the end of his 14.1 challenge. He has Fedor Gorst scheduled for March and says he has interest from Darren Appleton and Corey Deuel. “Filler wants to play for 2-3 weeks,” he says. “And I have put out feelers to Niels and Thorsten” Until then though. Chamberlain says he is “Happy for Jayson and for the pros getting interested in straight pool again”.

G.O.A.T. Seen Swimming with Sharks

Jayson Shaw (David Thompson – Medium Pool)

Diamond Derby City Classic XXIII, January 21-29, 2022

Caesars Southern Indiana, Elizabeth, IN

David Thomson

Are we glad to be back? You bet your life we are!

Nine days in the world’s greatest tournament as 500+ of the world’s greatest competitors vie for serious prize money – and then some…if you know what I mean: nudge, nudge, wink wink.

And guess who snuck up to surprise us all? Mr. Retirement (yeah, right): The G.O.A.T: Efren Reyes is in the Arena. And competing in the Bank Pool, One Pocket, and 9-Ball disciplines where points are awarded towards becoming Master of the Table; the 5-time title Reyes has captured more than any other mortal.

The Derby’s 4th event, the Diamond Big Foot 10-Ball Challenge gets the balls rolling today.

Here, Jayson Shaw is the man to beat. As a 3-time BIG Foot titlist, compounded by his recent courageous conquests, he is currently without peer.

Last weekend, Jayson shattered the 626 ball Straight Pool record that took years to be masterfully achieved by Mr. John Schmidt.

With true dedication and discipline, Jayson ran 714…after five tireless days of attempts : An extraordinary feat. With his effortless, raw power and unwavering “Eagle Eye,” it’s predicted that he’s not done; he will run a 1000.

But wait, there’s more: The weekend before that in the Turning Stone 9-Ball event, Shaw fought back from 0-5 against the mighty Earl to win 9-8. He was also deep in the hole against the much improved Kuwaiti, Abdullah Al Youssef to overcome in another nerve-racking hill-hill, encounter.

Then, finally, Fedor Gorst had him down 9-3 whom Shaw soon crushed before allowing Fedor only one more game to succeed at 13-10. And, secure his 7th record-breaking title.

More than records may be broken: Spirits, dreams, shafts, No wait; not shafts, most are using carbon fiber.

The Derby City Classic, 9-Day event has 4 components:

DIAMOND BIG FOOT 10-BALL CHALLENGE: Fri. Jan. 21 – Sun. Jan 23. 2022.

Diamond Derby City Classic BANK POOL Championship: Fri. Jan. 21 – Sun. Jan. 23. 2022. Semis and Finals in the Accu-Stats TV Arena: Tuesday evening, Jan 25.

Diamond Derby City Classic ONE-POCKET Championship: Sun Jan. 23 -Wed. Jan. 26. Semis and Finals  in the Accu-Stats TV Arena, Thursday evening, Jan 27.

Diamond Derby City Classic 9-BALL Championship: Wed. Jan 26 – Sat. 29.

And the cream of the mafch-ups available via the Accu-Stats Pay-Per-View OnDemand, 4-camera HD production. Approximately, 60 action-packed hours of pro-pool is projected, PLUS reruns. After each match concludes, it is uploaded and available to you. With PPV OnDemand, you choose when you view, no matter what you’re timezone.

Don’t miss a stroke: Visit accu-stats.com. Enjoy.

Fedor Gorst vs Francisco Sanchez Ruiz
Darren Appleton vs Roland Garcia
Jayson Shaw vs Omar Al Shaheen
Shane Van Boening vs Lee Van Corteza
John Morra vs Roberto Gomez
Alex Kazakis vs Joshua Filler
Max Eberle vs Mika Immonen
Alex Pagulayan vs David Alcaide

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“Mr 626” John Schmidt will be Keynote Speaker For the 2021 BEF Junior National Championships

John Schmidt

The Billiard Education Foundation (BEF) today announced “Mr 626” John Schmidt will be the keynote speaker at the 33rd annual BEF Junior National Championships awards banquet on Friday, July 30.

“On May 27, 2019 John Schmidt surpassed Willie Mosconi’s 65-year-old record of 526, when he ran 626 balls in a 14.1 straight pool exhibition,” said Shane Tyree, BEF associate director. “I was one of the first people able to witness John’s amazing record-breaking achievement and it is our honor to have him come share his story of dedication, perseverance and inspiration with the junior pool players and their families at this year’s award banquet.”

In addition to his 626 run, John’s list of pool playing achievements include: twice playing as a member of Team USA in the Mosconi Cup (2006, 2014); 2006 US Open champion; 2012 American 14.1 champion; 2012 14.1 World Tournament champion; and, 2018 Derby City Classic 14.1 Challenge champion. He is also the only living player known with eight runs of 400+ and 204 runs over 200 in 14.1 straight pool.

“I devoted a lot of my pool playing career to breaking Mosconi’s 526 record,” John Schmidt said. “It’s really the only true record in pool, and now, to be able to share my experience with the next generation of pool players at the BEF Junior National Championships is something that makes me very proud and excited.”

This year’s event will feature an “open” registration for any junior competitor wanting to compete in the country’s National Junior Pool Championship and will take place at the South Point, Hotel, Casino and Convention Center in Las Vegas, July 27 – 31, alongside the BCA Billiard and Home Leisure Expo.

This year, the BEF Junior National Championships will have three categories in the 9-Ball division, presented by Iwan Simonis, for boys and girls. The categories include: 14&U* (cannot turn 15 in 2021); 16&U* (cannot turn 17 in 2021); and, 18&U (cannot turn 19 in 2021). *Divisions are based on minimum field or players will participate in the open divisions.

Allocations for the prestigious 2021 Predator World Junior Pool Championship, September 9 – 11, at the Rio in Las Vegas, will be provided to the top three finishers in the boys open 18&U 9-Ball division, the top five finishers in the boys 16&U 9-Ball division, and in the girls open 18&U 9-Ball division.

This year’s BEF Junior National Championship will include two new events: a 21&U 10-Ball National Championship (min. age 18), and an 18&U Junior National 8-Ball Championship (this event is sold out, but if you are interested, please sign up on the waitlist on the 8-Ball registration site). Both of these new events will feature an open field of male and female competitors.

To register for this year’s events please visit BilliardEducation.org or use one of the following links below:

Register for 2021 Junior National 9-Ball Championships Presented by Iwan Simonis
Register for 2021 Junior National 8-Ball Championships
Register for 2021 21&U National 10-Ball Championships

Registration for this year’s event will be open until June 1, 2021. No late or onsite registrations will be accepted.

Bergman Completes Team USA

Justin Bergman (JP Parmentier – Matchroom Multisport)

Justin Bergman has been named as the fifth player to join Team USA as they defend the partypoker Mosconi Cup at Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, Las Vegas, this November 25-28, live on Sky Sports and DAZN.
 
Bergman put in a stellar performance at last week’s International 9-Ball Open, beating big name players on his way to a fourth-place finish; the best placed American player in the field.
 
The 32-year-old made his partypoker Mosconi Cup debut in 2014 and will be making his fourth appearance at the annual USA vs Europe showdown later this month. He joins Shane Van Boening, Skyler Woodward, Tyler Styer and Billy Thorpe on the team.
 
Explaining the decision to select Bergman, coach Johan Ruijsink said: “When I started with my campaign to win the Mosconi Cup with Team USA in 2017 I knew it would be hard to accomplish that win. I told the players and Jeremy that there were a lot of worst-case scenarios and just a couple of best-case scenarios.
 
“Last year we found a best-case scenario – which was absolutely amazing – but I also realised that it was not achieved solely on our own merit. We took advantage of some of the bad shots of Team EUROPE and in order to repeat the win I thought we would have to show more dominance in some of our matches.
 
“So we started this selection process with Team USA, under the guidance of Jeremy, in order to see if we could find a challenger for the 2018 winning team. Supported by the BCA, Predator and CSI we started that process, which saw Max Eberle as a surprise winner over Justin Bergman, Chris Robinson and Mahkeal Parris.
  
“We announced four players after the international trip (mainly in Russia) and the last spot would be decided after the International Open.
 
“During the international Open two things occurred; one, The Europeans showed that they are in great shape, conquering the first three places, and two, only one American was able to rise to the occasion, which was a player from the original challenger group: Justin Bergman. Beating John Schmidt, Hunter Lombardo, Liu Re Teng, Albin Ouschan, Alex Pagulayan, Thorsten Hohmann, Shane van Boening and Ko Pin Cheung and coming in 4th, was a run that was hard to ignore. Not only the place he finished, but also the list of absolutely world-class players made us decide that he would be a real added value to this year’s team.
 
“It is incredibly hard to make a decision like this. On paper it might look like the obvious choice, but I had to eliminate two great players, who fought hard and travelled the world in order to make the team. I know it hurts and doesn’t do just to Corey Deuel and Max Eberle. I am very grateful for their efforts and their input. But in the end I am not in the business of keeping everybody happy, It is my task to create the best possible team in order to have a chance to repeat our win, which will be hard enough in any case.
 
“So we picked Justin Bergman and welcome him to the team.
 
“‘One of the best players after the break’ is a remark I have heard a lot. So we will work on that break in this last stage. He already played in a couple of Mosconi Cups and has shown he can handle the pressure that comes along with the event. He is very motivated and with his humble attitude he will fit perfectly in this year’s team. In the last year we had a couple of conversations, in which he was very open and respectful to me. That showed me he trusts me to work together. Also, the other players on the team are happy with him being on the team, so I am confident we can build up towards a great performance at the Mosconi Cup.
 
“His talent and the quality of his game is undoubtedly up there with the best, he just didn’t always give himself the opportunity to shine. I believe this year he wants that to change. He wants to shine and he is very motivated to support the team and help us to do create another "best case scenario". I have high hopes that this year and this experience will bring out the best of him for now and for the future. He deserves that, America deserves that.
 
“We are counting on huge support for him and team USA, we need the crowd to go wild and silence the European fans.
 
“We can’t wait to get started. Let’s bring it on! Go USA!”
 
The 2019 partypoker Mosconi Cup will take place at Mandalay Bay Resort, Las Vegas this November 25-28, live on Sky Sports and DAZN. Tickets are available now at www.mosconicup.com. Prices start at $48 per day with silver season tickets at $161. Additional gold seating has now been released with day tickets at $70 and a season ticket available for $239.
 
VIP Platinum packages are available priced $225 per day or $950 for all four days and include a breakfast buffet, unlimited drinks, VIP seating in the front three rows and much more.
 
The 2019 partypoker Mosconi Cup is partnered by Rasson Billiards who supplies the Official Table; the cloth is supplied by Iwan Simonis and Saluc is the Official Ball Provider. Predator is the Official Cue of the event, Kamui the Official Chalk and Tip and Ultimate Team Gear provide all partypoker Mosconi Cup apparel.

Lechner’s Win over Van Boening Highlights International Open Day Three

Max Lechner

Wednesday morning at the International 9-Ball Open, began with a round from the one-loss side. Here, the winners stay in the tournament while the losers pack for home. Che-Wei Fu sent David Tickle home 11-5 while Roland Garcia rolled over Frankie Alvarez 11-1. Roberto Gomez defeated Raphael Debreo 11-6 and Naoyuki Oi won over Donny Mills 11-8.  Maxim Dudanets ruined the day for Johnny Archer 11-5 and Tommy Kennedy did the same for Jeremy Jones at 11-4. Albin Ouschan beat Matt Krah 11-3  while Niels Feijen danced over Dario Woodside 11-3. Finally, Billy Thorpe lost a close one to Ta Li Lin 11-9.
 
The next round was back on the winner’s side and featured Mika Immonen against Shane Van Boening. The famous SVB break wasn’t quite there today, but he still cleared Immonen 11-7. John Schmidt wasted no time in beating Bryan Farah 11-2 as Lee Van Corteza beat Chen-Yu Chang 11-3.
 
Max Eberle helped his Mosconi Cup hopes by putting down Skyler Woodward 11-6 and Thorsten Hohmann mowed the tall grass by besting Ko Pin-Yi 11-7. Another match worth noting was World #1 Joshua Filler taking down Ruslan Chinakhov 11-9. Filler has gained quite a fan base this week for his honor at the table. He called a foul on himself that no one else saw on Monday and then called himself on an illegal break yesterday. Two very close matches worth noting were Darren Appleton escaping from Kenny Cheng 11-9 while Denis Grade nipped David Alcaide 11-10.
 
Our third round of the day found Alex Pagulayan in form as he ran over Marco Teutscher 11-3. Ko Ping-Chung got by Kai Lin Hsu 11-9 and Jayson Shaw managed to catch a gear after he and Quac Hoang Duong were tied at 8 and Shaw took control to win 11-8. James Aranas had a great match where he destroyed defending champion Chang Jung-Lin 11-3 and Tommy Kennedy blasted Maxim Dudanets 11-5.
 
John Morra defeated Petri Makkonen 11-4 and Alex Kazakis continued his fine week taking off Fedor Gorst 11-7. Finally, Justin Martin just slid by Niels Feijen 11-10 and Dennis Orcollo edged Corey Duel 11-10 when Deuel hung the 5 in the corner on his way to clear the final rack.
 
There were only five matches on the one loss side at 6:30, and the feature match was Aloysius Yapp vs Ko Pin-Yi. Readers might want to remember the name of Aloysius Yapp. The Singapore native has had a great week here in Norfolk. First he beat the younger Ko brother Ko Ping-Han and then tonight on the TV table he had to take on the older Ko, one of the few players who can claim two World Championships in the same year. 
 
Yapp was not concerned though. He went out and played flawless pool and dominated Pin-Yi throughout the match. He took an early lead and just kept stretching it out farther and farther. In the end he was leading 10-5 when Ko tried to draw for position on the 9 ball and drew his rock into the corner pocket, giving Yapp ball-in-hand on the 9 for the 11-5 victory. Yes, Yapp should be a name in this game for years to come. 
 
In other matches, Ruslan Chinahov beat Lin Ta-Li 11-4 in a match that wasn’t even that close, and Roberto Gomez lost to Nick Ekonomolous. Gomez had a very vocal cheering section this week, but they had very little opportunity to make any noise as he quietly dropped his match to Ekonomopolous 11-4. 
 
The 8:30 round eliminated another thirteen players with Chris Melling, John Schmidt, Ralf Souquet, Tommy Kennedy, Petri Makkonen and US young gun Justin Martin all dropping matches. 
 
The final round of play on Wednesday featured four matches on the winner’s side. While last year’s runner-up Ko Ping-Chung was beating BCA Hall of Famer Alex Pagulayan on the feature table, Austria’s Max Lechner and Shane Van Boening were putting on a show on one of the outer tables. Lechner had already gotten the attention of the crowd in Norfolk with his 11-4 opening match win over Skyler Woodward. The fan’s hadn’t seen anything yet though. Lechner held an early 2-0 lead over Van Boening when he ran six straight racks for an 8-0 lead. He extended that lead to 9-0, before Shane started doing what he does. Van Boening started creeping back into the match and although Lechner had opportunities at the table, he wasn’t able to capitalize on them. Nine racks later, the score was tied at 9-9 and every eyeball in the room was glued to this match. Van Boening took the hill first at 10-9, but Lechner dug down deep and took control of his nerves to tie the score at 10-10 with him breaking. The break turned out to be very important as Lechner broke the balls and watched along with the standing room only crowd as the 9-ball made a beeline to the corner pocket, giving Lechner the 11-10 win. 
 
Lechner now joins Ko, Dennis Orcollo and Jayson Shaw in the final eight on the winner’s side. The other four players in that round will be determined Thursday morning. 

International 9-Ball Open Day One Complete

Max Lechner (Erwin Dionisio)

The International 9-Ball Open began Monday, October 28 with 96 players prepared to battle for the title. Two side stories that fans were watching this week were that Max Eberle and Corey Deuel are both shooting for the final spot on the Mosconi Cup team. With the final decision due immediately following this event, their play this week could be the deciding factor. One other interesting tidbit is that we are getting to see all three of the Ko brothers in competition for the first time here in Norfolk. Pool fans are familiar with the games of Ko Pin-Yi and his younger brother Ko Ping-Chung, but this will be most US fans first chance to see the youngest, Ko Ping-Han in action.
 
The opening round kicked off Monday morning with some great matches. Austrian young gun Maximillian Lechner took down Team USA member Skyler Woodward 11-4, by simply denying Woodward opportunities at the table. Justin Bergman came from four games down to defeat John Schmidt on the hill. Other notable scores from the opening round were Johnny Archer winning 11-8 over Ivo Linkin, and Jeremy Jones over Yu-Lun Chang 11-5.
 
The second round of the day saw Ko Ping-Chung take down Ernesto Dominguez 11-5 and Alex Pagulayan besting Michael Yednak 11-6. 
 
The third round also had some matches of interest, with Alex Kazakis and Fedor Gorst both shooting perfect matches with Kazakis over Chris Lawson 11-0 and Gorst giving the snowball to William Brewer. James Aranas went past Mark Vidal 11-4 and Donny Mills owned William Collins 11-3.
 
Coming back from the dinner break, the crowd was treated to a battle between Roberto Gomez and Ko Pin-Yi. Ko took an early 2-0 lead, but Gomez came back to take his first lead at 5-4. Gomez held that lead until 10-10 when a miss on the 8-ball left the table and match for Ko 11-10. In another 6:30 match, Ralf Souquet found himself in a 7-3 hole against Matt Krah. Ralf came back to 7-6 down, but hung an 8-ball that would have tied things at 7-7. Souquet did get back to a tie at 8-8 and traded racks with Krah until he pocketed the final 9-ball for the 11-10 win. 
 
In the 8:30 round, Earl Strickland had his hands full with the event’s lone Japanese competitor, Kengo Suzuki. The match was tied at 6-6 when Strickland won two for an 8-6 lead. Suzuki came right back to tie things at 8-8 before Strickland took control and won the match 11-9. Another battle in the 8:30 round saw Tommy Kennedy take American 14.1 Straight Pool Champion Ruslan Chinahov to hill-hill before Chinahov won the match 11-10. 
 
The final round of the night was not pretty for US players, as Billy Thorpe, Donny Mills and Frankie Hernandez were all sent to the one loss side. Neither Thorpe or Mills looked to be comfortable at the table in their matches, as Thorpe dropped an 11-3 match to Vietnam’s Quoc Hoang Duong and Mills couldn’t stay with a free wheeling Chris Melling in an 11-4 match. While Frankie Hernandez’s match was more competitive, he still fell to Marco Teutscher 11-6.
 
You can follow the action all week long, with our online brackets and real time scoring. Select matches will also be streamed online as part of Accu-Stats PPV coverage of the event