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Montgomery and Dreidel win Dutch Mill Holiday Classic; 8-Ball and 9-Ball

Geoff Montgomery and Dave Dreidel won their respective events in 8-ball and 9-ball at the Dutch Mill Holiday Classic, held on January 13-14, under the auspices of the Western New York Tour. The two came within a single match of playing against each other in both finals. Each event drew 20 entrants to the Dutch Mill Restaurant, Party House and Pool Room in Greece, NY. Montgomery picked up a second title at a Friday the 13th Warm-Up, a single elimination event, which drew 16 entrants. 
As is often, though not always, the case in double elimination tournaments, the finalists met twice in these two events. In the 8-ball tournament, Dan Miosi defeated Montgomery in the hot seat match, only to be unseated by him in a single-game final. Dreidel had been defeated by Montgomery in the opening round of the 8-ball tournament. Dreidel won nine on the loss side to earn a re-match against Montgomery in the semifinals, but a second win sent Montgomery to the finals, where he defeated Miosi. In the 9-ball tournament, Dreidel came back from a loss in the hot seat match to double dip Montgomery in the finals.
The Friday night 'warm up,' which featured races to 4, saw Montgomery and Mark Hatch square off in one semifinal, as tour director Nick Brucato faced Phil Johnson in the other. Montgomery shut Hatch out, as Johnson squeaked by Brucato 4-3. Montgomery took the final 4-1 over Johnson to add $400 to his weekend prize package.
In the 8-ball event, with Dreidel already long at work on the loss side, Montgomery advanced to a winners' side semifinal against Chris Bassett, while Dan Niosi faced Jeff Purall. Montgomery and Niosi moved into the hot seat match with 3-1 victories, and by that same score, Niosi grabbed the hot seat from Miosi.
On the loss side, five matches in to his nine-match streak, Dreidel eliminated Jake Miosi (son to Dan) 3-1, to draw Purall. Bassett picked up Jason DeWolf, who'd just defeated Chad Strong 3-2.
The two loss-side combatants handed the recent arrivals from the winners' side their second straight defeat; Dreidel downing Purall 3-1 and DeWolf defeating Bassett, double hill.
Dreidel won the subsequent quarterfinal, double hill, over DeWolf, and got a second shot at Montgomery with a 3-1 victory over Dan Niosi in the semifinals. Montgomery ended Dreidel's streak 3-1 for a second shot against Miosi. That second shot played out in a single game final, won by Montgomery to claim the title. Lynette Cooper and Tracy Roth picked up $65 each as the event's top two female finishers.
In the more traditional, double-meet-up way, Dreidel and Montgomery first squared off in the 9-ball event's hot seat match. Montgomery had shut out Jeff Purcell, as Dreidel was busy sending Nick Brucato to the loss side in a double hill fight. In another double hill fight, Montgomery sent Dreidel to the semifinals and sat in the hot seat, having won his final match.
On the loss side, Purcell picked up Tracy Roth (on her way to a second 'top two females' cash award), who'd defeated Chad Strong, double hill. Brucato picked up the elder Miosi (Dan), who'd just eliminated Mindy Hagar 3-1 (Hagar picked up the second $30 cash prize for top female finisher). Purcell and Niosi advanced to the quarterfinals; Purcell 3-1 over Roth and Miosi, double hill over Brucato.
Purcell took the quarterfinal match 3-1 over Niosi, but had his loss-side streak ended 3-1 by Dreidel in the semifinals. Dreidel completed his much-shorter-this-time loss-side run with a 3-1 victory over Montgomery in the finals.

Grau downs Hatch family to win stop on Western New York Tour

Dave Grau went undefeated to win the July 1 stop on the Western New York Tour, and had to defeat an uncle (Mark Hatch) and his nephew (Dennis) to get it done. The event drew 14 entrants to Bison Billiards in Buffalo, NY.

The Hatches met twice; once in the first round, with nephew Dennis sending Uncle Mark to the loss side, and later, in the semifinals, where the result was reversed. Dennis moved among the winners’ side final four to face tour director Nick Brucato. Grau, in the meantime, squared off against Corey Welfare. Dennis survived a double hill match against Brucato, and in the hot seat match, met up with Grau, who’d defeated Welfare 7-2. Grau sent Dennis to meet his uncle in the semifinals, and waited for a Hatch to return, one way or another.

On the loss side, Brucato picked up uncle Mark Hatch, who’d shut out both John Grant and Seth Pfudelus to reach him. Welfare drew Bobby Schrader, who’d gotten by Dan Miosi 5-3 and . Shawn McCluskey 5-2. Hatch and Schrader advanced to the quarterfinals; Hatch with a 6-3 victory over Brucato (first time in what Brucato described as “a long time” in numerous meetings between the two) and Schrader with a 5-3 victory over Welfare.

Hatch chalked up his third, loss-side shutout with a 6-0 victory over Schrader in the quarterfinals, and turned to exact some revenge on nephew Dennis. Dennis went down 8-2 and it was Uncle Mark that Grau had to face. Uncle Mark got served a taste of his own loss-side medicine, as Grau shut him out to secure the event victory.

Hatch and Miosi split top prizes on Western New York Tour stop

Mark Hatch and Dan Miosi met in the finals of the January 28 stop on the Western New York Tour.  Miosi had come back from the loss-side to challenge Hatch, who was in the hot seat. At the time they met, Hatch, through three matches, had yet to give up a single rack. In what was to have been a true double elimination final, Miosi battled to double hill and prevailed in the opening set. They opted, at that point, to split the top two prizes, with Miosi as the official ‘winner’ of the event that had drawn 11 entrants to Bison Billiards in Buffalo, NY.

They both opened the short field tournament with shutouts; Miosi picked up a ‘bye’ and then shut out Brian Vaughn. Hatch had shut out Vicky Sharen. Both were now among the winners’ side final four with Hatch facing Shawn McCluski and Miosi squaring off against Ed Gearheart. Hatch shut out McCluski, while Gearheart sent Miosi west 5-3. Hatch then won what proved to be his last victory with a third straight shutout, against Gearhead, and sat in the hot seat, awaiting Miosi’s return.

On the loss side, Miosi picked up Bobby Schrader, who’d just defeated tour director Nick Brucato in a double hill match. McCluski drew Roger Jackson, who’d downed Corey Bailey, also double hill. Miosi got into the quarterfinals with a 5-3 win over Schrader and in the subsequent quarterfinals faced McCluski, who’d eliminated Jackson 4-3.

Miosi defeated McCluski and then, Gearhart in the semifinals by identical 5-2 scores. He battled to double hill in the opening set of the finals that followed against Hatch, at which point, the two declared a ‘truce’ of sorts, and opted to split the top two prizes, with Miosi assigned the role of official winner.

Brucato survives finals challenge to win Western New York Tour stop

Nick Brucato won his own Western New York Tour on Saturday, November 26 by winning the second set of a true double elimination against Mark Hatch. The event drew a short field of seven entrants to Bison Billiards in Buffalo, NY.

Brucato picked up a Bye in the opening round and faced Dan Miusci among the winners’ side final four. In the meantime, Adam Smith, who’d defeated Hatch 6-2 in the opening round of play, squared off against Roger Jackson. Brucato downed Miusci 6-4, as Smith was busy sending Jackson west 6-2. Brucato got into the hot seat with a 6-3 win over Smith and waited for the return of Hatch.

First up for Hatch on the loss-side was Dan Miusci’s son, Jake, whom he shut out to move into the quarterfinals. Jackson picked up Fran Imburgia, who defeated him 4-2 to face Hatch. Hatch shut out Imburgia to earn a re-match against Smith in the semifinals. A 4-2 victory there gave him his shot against Brucato.

Hatch took full advantage in the race-to-6 opening set, defeating Brucato 6-4. In the shortened race-to-4 second set, though, Brucato battled to double hill before prevailing to capture the event title.

Grau goes undefeated to win his second Western New York Tour stop

Dave Grau and Nick Brucato

Dave Grau, who hasn’t finished lower than fifth in a tournament since March, added a second victory on the Western New York Tour to that list with an undefeated day on Saturday, November 19. The event drew 15 entrants to Six Pockets Billiards Café in Rochester, NY, the site, as well, of Grau’s victory in October.

From among the winners’ side final four, Grau faced Mark Hatch (uncle to Dennis Hatch), as tour director Nick Brucato squared off against Jose Mirabelle. Grau downed Hatch 6-1, as Mirabelle sent Brucato west in a double hill match. Grau gt into the hot seat with a 6-3 victory over Mirabelle and waited for what turned out to be Brucato’s return.

First up for Brucato on the loss-side was Jerry Sullivan, who’d defeated Dan Muosci and Brian Doty, both 4-2 to reach him. Hatch picked up Chad Christiansen, who’d survived two straight, double hill matches against Adam Techolph and Rick Sciotti. Christiansen’s third straight double hill match proved to be his downfall, as Hatch advanced to the quarterfinals. Brucato joined him, following his 4-2 victory over Sullivan.

Brucato allowed Hatch only a single rack in those quarterfinals and got a chance at revenge against Mirabelle, who’d sent him west in the winners’ side final four match. Brucato took full advantage, chalking up his second straight 4-1 victory and turning to face Grau in the hot seat. Grau completed his undefeated day with a 6-4 victory over Brucato.

Brucato thanked Six Pockets Billiards Café owner, Terry Horan, and his staff for their hospitality, and noted that the tour’s next stop will be on Thanksgiving weekend; Saturday, November 26, at Bison Billiards, in Buffalo, NY.