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Shea goes undefeated to win second round of her two-stop battle against Friend on JPNEWT

Kathy Friend, April Hatcher, Carol V. Clark, Linda Shea, Melissa Jenkins, Melissa Mason, Kassandra Bein, and June Prescop

When the J. Pechauer Northeast Women’s Tour got back underway in August, Linda Shea advanced all the way to the hot seat, only to have Kathy Friend, whom she’d sent to the semifinals, come back and defeat her in the final match. This past weekend (Sept. 19-20), the final matchup was the same although Friend’s path to it was significantly different. So was the outcome. Friend won five on the loss side to face Shea in their second final match in a row, but Shea hung on to complete an undefeated run and win her second stop on the shortened 2020 tour. The event drew 20 entrants to First Break Bar & Grill in Sterling, VA.

Following an opening round bye, Shea sent Christie Hurdel 7-5 and Melissa Jenkins 7-4 to the loss side to draw Carol V. Clark in one of the winners’ side semifinals. April Hatcher, in the meantime, had defeated Rumi Brown 7-4 and then gave up only three total racks in 17 games against Ceci Strain (1) and Teri Thomas (2) to face June Prescop in the other winners’ side semifinal. Prescop was responsible for sending Friend to the loss side 7-5 in a winners’ side quarterfinal.

Shea downed Clark 7-5 and in the hot seat match, faced Hatcher, who’d sent Prescop to the loss side 7-4. Shea prevailed to claim the hot seat 7-3 over Hatcher.

On the loss side, Friend opened her trip back to the finals with a 7-3 win over Lai Li and a 7-2 victory over Melissa Mason to draw Clark. Prescop picked up Melissa Jenkins, who, following her defeat at the hands of Shea, had eliminated Ceci Strain 7-5 and Kassandra Bein 7-3. 

Friend and Prescop advanced to their quarterfinal rematch. Friend defeated Clark 7-5 and Prescop just did survive a double hill fight against Jenkins. Friend prevailed 7-3 in the rematch and then went on to down Hatcher 7-5 in the semifinals.

As might have been expected, Shea and Friend locked up in a tight battle that went double hill. Shea dropped the final 9-ball to claim her second 2020 event title on the tour. The win also solidified Shea’s hold on the #1 spot in the tour standings. With Kia Burwell finishing in the tie for 13th, Friend’s second-place finish allowed her to move into the #2 spot. Burwell slipped a single place, down to #3, while Lai Li, who finished in the tie for 9th place, moved down a spot to #4.

Shea thanked the ownership and staff at First Break Bar & Grill, as well as title sponsor J. Pechauer Custom Cues, angle aim Art (Britanya E. Rapp) and Turtle Rack. The next stop on the JPNEWT, scheduled for Oct. 10-11, will be hosted by Eagle Billiards in Dickson City, PA.