Archive Page

Bourbeau & Morgan go undefeated to capture Partners 8-Ball on NE 9-Ball Series

Kerry McAuliffe, Scott Reynolds, Stacie Bourbeau, Josh Geoffroy, Mark Morgan, and Dan Simoneau

The last time Stacie Bourbeau and Mark Morgan competed as partners on the New England 9-Ball Series (April 11 at Snooker’s in Providence, RI), they were playing 9-ball with a combined Fargo rate of 600 and finished in the tie for 5th place. They returned as partners on Sunday (May 16, Stop #12), switched games to 8-ball with a reduced Fargo rate of 598 and ended up going undefeated to claim the event title. The $500-added event drew 32 teams to House of Billiards in Hampton Falls, NH. 

Playing as one of the three top-rated teams in the tournament and working at the beginning in an upper bracket of half the field, Bourbeau and Morgan got by two opponents to reach a winners’ side semifinal against Derek Cunningham and Tony Ruzzano (600). From the lower bracket, Josh Geoffroy & Dan Simoneau (547) advanced to meet Kyle King & Jason Seavey (500). 

Bourbeau/Morgan downed Cunningham/Ruzzano 4-1 and in the hot seat match, squared off against Geoffroy/Simoneau, who’d shut out team King/Seavey. Bourbeau/Morgan claimed the hot seat 4-1 over Geoffroy/Simoneau and awaited their return.

On the loss side, Cunningham/Ruzzano picked up one of the remaining higher-rated teams left – Kerry McAuliffe and Scott Reynolds (598), who’d lost their opening round match and then embarked on an eight match, loss-side winning streak that would take them all the way to the semifinals. They’d recently eliminated Chad Bazinet & Lindsey Monto 4-1 and then survived a double hill challenge versus Josh Rupard & Elliot Coates (591) to draw Cunningham/Ruzzano. 

King/Seavey drew Josh Grzasko & Steve Matthieu, who’d arrived on the heels of three straight double hill wins, that included the elimination of Francis Buelvas & Raul Medina and Heidi and Matt Rezendes.

The battle for advancement to the quarterfinals saw the two teams that did so give up only a single rack, in total. McAuliffe/Reynolds gave up the one to Cunningham/Ruzzano. Grzasko/Matthieu didn’t give up any to King/Seavey. McAuliffe/Reynolds gave up just another single rack in the quarterfinals against Grzasko/Matthieu.

In both the semifinals and finals that followed, the Geoffroy/Simoneau Fargo rate of 547 gave them less than a 1-in-3 chance (31.4%) of winning either of the two matches versus ‘598’ opponents. They battled to double hill and won the first, downing McAuliffe/Reynolds in the semifinals. They came within a game of double hill in the finals, but couldn’t stop Bourbeau & Morgan from completing their undefeated run.

Tour director Marc Dionne thanked the ownership and staff at House of Billiards for their hospitality, as well as title sponsor Predator, Poison, Arcos II, BCAPL, USAPL New England, Fargo Rate, AzBilliards, Professor Q-ball’s National Pool and 3 Cushion News, MJS Construction, Master Billiards, OTLVISE, Piku Tips and Just The Tip Cue Repair and Custom Accessories. The NE 9-Ball Series will return to the House of Billiards for its Las Vegas Trip tournament (Stop #13), scheduled for Saturday, June 12. 

Seavey goes undefeated to win Stop #5 on NE 9-Ball Series

Troy Fortin, Elizabeth Ellis and Jason Seavey

Rebecca Ellis forces a deciding match against Seavey in battle for the hot seat

Though Jason Seavey earned the headline as the undefeated winner of the New England 9-Ball Series’ 5th tour stop this past weekend (Sat., Oct. 24), he has to share part of the story with the woman who almost defeated him in the battle for the hot seat – Rebecca Ellis, who, according to our records, has never cashed in a major event anywhere and on this day, came within a single match of playing, with a chance of winning, her first major final. One has to wonder whether her defeat in the subsequent semifinals was a source of relief or concern for Seavey, who ended up facing Troy Fortin, who’d been defeated by Ellis in a winners’ side semifinal and had a short, three-match trip on the loss side, which included a successful rematch against Ellis. 

They ended up 1, 2 & 3 at the $750-added event which drew 48 entrants to American Pool & Billiards (formerly Union Station Billiards) in Portland, ME.

Seavey may have been lulled into a false sense of security when he won his upper bracket opening match against a slightly higher-Fargo-rated opponent, Steven Smith (591 to Seavey’s 530). It gave Seavey a single bead on the wire at the start of the race-to-6, first round match, which, as it turned out, he didn’t need. He defeated Smith 5-1. His next three opponents were not so generous and forced Smith to face three double-hill deciding games (versus Robert Davis, Xavier Libby and Ben Savoie) just to get to his winners’ side semifinal match against Mike DeMarco.

Ellis, in the meantime, working in the lower bracket toward her winners’ side semifinal match against Troy Fortin, faced three opponents with higher ratings than her (367). She began against Bob Campbell, whose 506 Fargo Rate awarded her three beads on the wire in a race to 7, which, as it turned out, she needed. Campbell got to 6, but Ellis hit her ‘4’ target and advanced. In the only straight-up race to 5 she faced in the entire tournament, she defeated Michelle Haddock 5-2, before downing Steve Desrochers 4-4 (Desrochers racing to 6) and Shane Ryan 4-2 (Ryan also racing to 6) to draw Fortin for her winners’ side semifinal.

Ellis, with two beads on the wire in a race to 6, downed Fortin in their first meeting 4-3. Seavey, in the meantime, in a straight-up race to 6, sent DeMarco west 6-4 and joined Ellis in the hot seat match. Ellis started this match with four beads on the wire in a race to 8. They battled to a 3-7, double hill point, before Seavey prevailed and heaved (presumably) a huge sigh of relief as he settled into the hot seat.

On the loss side, Fortin opened up with a rematch against James Smith, whom he’d sent to the loss side in a double hill, winners’ side quarterfinal. Smith then defeated Bob Campbell and Ryan McCrum, both 5-1, to draw Fortin. DeMarco picked up Mark Morgan, who’d lost his opening match and was in the midst of a seven-match, loss-side winning streak that had recently included victories over Brandon Coley and Ben Savoie, both 6-3.

Morgan defeated DeMarco 6-3 and was joined in the quarterfinals by Fortin, who’d eliminated Smith 5-2. With two beads on the wire in a race to 7, Fortin then ended Morgan’s loss-side winning streak 5-3 in those quarterfinals.

The rematch between Fortin and Ellis did not go well for Ellis. She had two beads on the wire in a race to 6 and ended up adding just one. Fortin won it 6-1 and advanced to meet Seavey. The finals were a straight-up race to 6, won by Seavey to complete his undefeated run and claim the event title.

Tour director Marc Dionne thanked the ownership and staff at American Pool & Billiards for their hospitality, as well as Predator, Poison, Arcos II, BCAPL, USAPL New England, Fargo Rate, AZBilliards, Inside English, Professor Q-Ball’s National Pool and 3-Cushion News, Bob Campbell, MJS Construction, Master Billiards, OTLVISE Billiard Mechanics of America, Piku Tips and Just the Tip Cue Repair and Custom Accessories.

The next stop on the NE 9-Ball Series (#6), scheduled for Saturday, Nov. 14, will be a $500-added event, hosted by Straight Shooters in Fall River, MA. 

Robinson downs Fracasso-Verner in finals of New England 9-Ball Series’ opener

Mark Morgan, Ricky Robinson and Lukas Fracasso Verner

As it happened, the highest-ranked player in the lower bracket, ended up defeating the highest-ranked player in the upper bracket to complete an undefeated run and claim the event title at the season opening stop on the New England 9-Ball Series. As is always the case, the tour splits the field, initially, into separate brackets, defined by Fargo Rates. Ricky Robinson, with the highest Fargo Rate (515) among the 22 players competing initially in the lower bracket went undefeated through the field and in the end, downed two straight opponents who’d begun play in the upper bracket – Mark Morgan (596) in the battle for the hot seat and the highest ranked player in the competition, Lukas Fracasso-Verner (675), in the finals. The $1,000-added event, held this past weekend (Sept. 26-27), drew 43 entrants to Rack City in Bangor, ME.

Following an opening round bye in the upper bracket, Ricky Robinson walked right into a double hill fight, which he won, versus Kenny Hoke. He had a slightly easier win against Dan Sanborn (6-1), before downing Dennis Neault 5-3 to arrive at his winners’ side semifinal match against Aaron Barra (500). Lukas Fracasso-Verner played in the upper bracket’s opening round and defeated Dennis Boucher 8-2, before running into two straight double hill battles. He won the first against Ross Webster, but was defeated 5-6 (Fracasso-Verner racing to 7) by Mark Morgan. Morgan advanced to defeat Tyler Campbell 6-4 to arrive at his winners’ side semifinal match against Chad Bazinet.

In a straight-up race to 5, Robinson defeated Barra 5-3. With Bazinet (659) racing to 6, Morgan advanced to the hot seat match with a 5-4 win. With Morgan racing to 7 in the winners’ side final, Robinson downed him 5-2 to claim the hot seat.

Fracasso-Verner opened the seven-match, loss-side winning streak that would put him into the finals with a 7-3 win over Brian Tierney and leapfrogged over Phillip Russo’s forfeiture. He then downed Mike Gagne 7-2 and William Mounts 8-1 to enter the first money round, picking up Bazinet. Barra drew Dennis Neault, who, after his defeat at the hands of Robinson, had won loss-side matches against Paul Kazalski 5-1 and Troy Fortin 5-2.

Fracasso-Verner eliminated Bazinet 6-4, as Barra was doing likewise to Neault 5-1. Fracasso-Verner left little doubt in the quarterfinals that followed, eliminating Barra with a shutout. In the semifinals that followed, Mark Morgan put up a fight. Racing to 5, against Fracasso-Verner’s 7, Morgan came a single game shy of forcing a deciding 11th game and was defeated 7-3.

Fracasso-Verner entered the finals against Robinson, having won three out of every four games he’d played in his six matches on the loss side. Combined with his two winners’ side victories, he arrived with a 74% game-winning percentage. Robinson, in five matches, sat in the hot seat with a 68% winning percentage. With their 160-point differential in Fargo Rates (675-515), Robinson had the ‘game’ advantage, needing to win only 4, to Fracasso-Verner’s 8. They both won four games, but Robinson’s handicap advantage gave him the victory and event title.

Tour director Marc Dionne thanked the ownership and staff at Rack City, as well as sponsors Predator, Poison, Arcos II, BCAPL, USAPL New England, Fargo Rate, Bert Kinister, AZBilliards, Inside English, Professor Q-ball’s National Pool and 3-Cushion News, Delta 13 Racks, MJS Construction, Bob Campbell with Lease Fundings, Master Billiards, OTLVISE Billiard Mechanics of America, Piku Tips and Just The Tip Cue Repair and Custom Accessories. The second stop on the New England 9-Ball Series Tour, scheduled for this Saturday (Oct. 3), will be the $500-added Dave Marcus Memorial Tournament, hosted by Buster’s Billiards in Somersworth, NH.

McAuliffe and Gaetani go undefeated to win NE 9-Ball Series’ two-part return to the tables

Mark Morgan, Kerry McAuliffe and Andy Downs

Though their official 2020-2021 schedule will not begin until the weekend of September 26-27, the cancelled-since-March New England 9-Ball Series returned to the tables this past weekend (Aug. 29-30) to hold its annual Summer Sizzler tournament. Normally, a single affair held over a weekend, this Summer Sizzler, in deference to issues related to the pandemic, played out over two days and featured two separate tournaments on Saturday and Sunday.

On Saturday, in six matches, Kerry McAuliffe played 40 games and lost only six of them, finishing his undefeated run to the winners’ circle of Summer Sizzler Day 1 with shutouts in his winners’ side semifinal against Mark Morgan and his two matches – hot seat and finals – against Andy Downs. On Sunday, in five matches, Frank Gaetani played 35 games and lost 10 of them to go undefeated and claim the Summer Sizzler Day 2 title. Both events were hosted by Strokers Bar & Billiards in Pelham, NH and drew 32 (Saturday) and 29 (Sunday) entrants. There was some duplication in the entrants for both days, although none in the payout department.

On Day 1, McAuliffe, playing in the upper bracket, got by Shaun Conley, Ronnie Chestna and survived a double hill match versus Vadim Brown (6-3, Brown racing to 4) to arrive at a winners’ side semifinal against Mark Morgan (one of the players who competed on both days). Andy Downs, from the lower bracket, defeated Nathan Johnson, Emily Cady and Tony Legos to arrive at his winners’ side semifinal against Casey Olivieri.

McAuliffe began his run of three straight shutouts with a defeat over Morgan, putting him in the hot seat against Downs, who’d defeated Olivieri 4-2. McAuliffe then shut Morgan out to claim the hot seat.

Moving to the loss side and right into the first money round, Morgan survived a double hill match against Steve Sutton and advanced to the quarterfinals. Olivieri joined him after a 4-2 victory over Bob Campbell.

Morgan leapfrogged right into the semifinals, when Olivieri forfeited the quarterfinal match. In the semifinals that followed, the much higher Fargo-rated competitor (Morgan) hit a bump in his road and was only able to muster a single rack against Downs, who, with Morgan racing to 5,  won the match 4-1. The momentum of the semifinal win didn’t appear to help Downs at all. McAuliffe shut him out a second time in the finals and undefeated, claimed the Summer Sizzler’s Day 1 title.

Frank Gaetani, Owen Gomez and Tom Comerford

Summer Sizzler Day 2
On Day 2, it was Frank Gaetani, from the event’s upper bracket, taking center stage and it looked, initially, as though he were going to follow in McAuliffe’s ‘shutout’ footprints as he shut out Justin Cunningham in the opening round. He had to survive a second-round, double hill battle against Dana Mackenzie before regaining his footing and shutting out Mark Morgan, who was apparently still ‘out of gear’ from his day-before 3rd place finish. Gaetani faced Tom Comerford in one of the winners’ side semifinals and would face him again in the finals. Owen Gomez, in the meantime, giving up only three racks total to Paul Kazalski (2), Norm Charett (1), and Donny Call, faced Jenn Fogg in the other winners’ side semifinal.

Gaetani sent Comerford west 5-1 and in the hot seat match, faced Gomez, who’d chalked up his second shutout against Fogg. Gaetani claimed the hot seat 5-2 over Gomez.

On the loss side, Comerford and Fogg had to battle to advance to the first money round, which was the quarterfinals. Comerford made it with a 5-3 win over Jodie Thompson. Fogg did not, falling to Tony Mendonca 6-2.

In a straight-up race to 5, Comerford eliminated Mendonca in those quarterfinals, and then, defeated Gomez 5-2 for a second shot at Gaetani. In a straight-up race to 5, Gaetani claimed the Day 2 title 5-3.

Tour director Marc Dionne thanked the ownership and staff at Strokers for their hospitality, as well as sponsors Predator Cues, BCAPL, USAPL New England, Fargo Rate, Bert Kinister, AzBilliards, Inside English, Professor Q-ball’s National Pool and 3-Cushion News, Delta 13 Racks, MJS Construction, Bob Campbell with Lease Fundings, Master Billiards, OTLVISE Billiard Mechanics of America and Piku Tips. As noted above, The New England 9-Ball Series’ season opener is scheduled for the weekend of September 26-27. The $1,000-added event will be hosted by Rack City in Bangor, ME.

Souza stops loss-side bid by Kazalski to go undefeated on New England 9-Ball Series stop #14

(l to r): Paul Kazalski, Dominick Souza & Joe Callaluca

Dominick Souza came into the February 29 stop on the New England 9-Ball Series looking for his second win on the tour since he went undefeated at a stop in Tyngsboro, MA (Maxamilian’s Billiards) in April, 2018. His opponent in the hot seat match at this most recent event, Joe Callaluca, finished fourth at that 2018 stop, and settled for 3rd place this past weekend, when he was defeated by Paul Kazalski in the semifinals. Souza went on to defeat Kazalski in the finals to claim title to the $500-added event that drew 30 entrants to Strokers Bar and Billiards in Pelham, NH.

Working in the upper bracket with a FargoRate of 640, Souza got by Jose Concepcion 5-3, David Ty 6-3 and survived a double hill fight against Mark Morgan to draw TK Marshall in one of the winners’ side semifinals. Callaluca, in the meantime, sporting a FargoRate of 500 and working in the lower bracket, defeated Owen Gomez 3-1, and chalked up two straight shutouts, over Mike Felix and Doug Walker to draw Eli Davenport (502) in the other winners’ side semifinal. Davenport was fresh off a winners’ side quarterfinal victory over Kazalski (421).

Souza and Marshall battled to double hill before Souza advanced to the hot seat match. Callaluca recorded his third straight shutout, downing Davenport 3-0. With Callaluca racing to 4, Souza claimed the hot seat 6-2 and waited on what turned out to be the return of Kazalski.

Kazalski opened his loss-side campaign with two straight 3-1 victories, over John Mills and Tiffany Vuong and picked up a rematch versus Davenport. Marshall drew David Ty, who, following his defeat at the hands of Souza on the winners’ side, had won three straight on the loss side, downing Brian Tierney and Xhuljano Kamxhiu, both 4-2 and surviving a double hill battle against Roger Vivier to reach Marshall.

Ty and Kazalksi eliminated Marshall and Davenport; Ty shutting Marshall out and Kazalski successfully navigating his rematch against Davenport 3-1. Kazalski then took the quarterfinal match over Ty 4-3 (Ty racing to 6).

With Fargo Rates separated by 79 points (Callaluca, 500 and Kazalski, 421), the semifinal was a straight up race to 4 for both of them. They battled to double hill before Kazalski prevailed to earn a shot against Souza in the hot seat and a chance to chalk up his first regional tour victory.

Souza put a stop to that chance by giving up only a single rack in the only set necessary in a true double elimination final. Souza sealed the victory 8-1 and claimed the title.

Tour director Marc Dionne thanked the ownership and staff at Strokers, as well as sponsors Predator Cues, BCAPL, USAPL New England, Fargo Rate, Bert Kinister, AZBilliards, Inside English, Professor Q-ball’s National Pool and 3-Cushion News, Delta 13 Racks, MJS Construction, Bob Campbell with Lease Fundings, Master Billiards, OTLVISE Billiard Mechanics of America and Piku Tips. The next stop on the New England 9-Ball Series (#15), scheduled for Saturday, March 7, will be the $500-added Joe Brown Memorial, to be hosted by Buster’s Billiards in Somersworth, NH.

Idrais wins two out of three against Gatta to win New England 9-Ball Series stop in Tyngsboro

(l to r): Rick Gatta, Mourad Idrais & Joe Callaluca

During the New England 9-Ball Series stop (#7) on Sunday, November 26, Mourad Idrais and Rick Gatta played 20 games of 9-ball over three matches. While none of the individual matches went double hill, the aggregate score did. With Gatta (a B player) racing to 6 and Idrais (C+) racing to 5 in those matches, they split the games evenly at 10-10, which would translate into a win for Idrais were they to have played a single race-to-11 match. Idrais backed up the aggregate score win by winning two out of the three matches, including the final one that broke their 1-1 match tie and earned him the event title. The $500-added event drew 34 entrants to Maxamillian’s Billiards in Tyngsboro, MA.
 
Idrais and Joe Callaluca (both C+) emerged from the event’s lower bracket to appear in one of the winners’ side semifinals. Gatta and Lozar Gurevich (both B) from the upper bracket appeared in the other one. Idrais sent Gallaluca to the loss side 5-1 and was joined in the hot seat match by Gatta, who’d defeated Gurevich 6-1. Idrais sent Gatta to the semifinals 5-3 in their first of three and waited on his return.
 
On the loss side Callaluca picked up fellow C+ player Bill Phillips, who’d defeated two other C+ players, George Morgan, double hill, and Eli Davenport 5-3. Gurevich drew A-player Mark Morgan, who’d eliminated Ryan Stevens 7-4 and Mike Nicoloro 7-3.
 
In a straight-up race to 5, Callaluca advanced to the quarterfinals, double hill, over Phillips. Gurevich joined him with a 5-2 win over the higher handicapped Morgan. Callaluca went on to win the quarterfinal match 5-2 over the higher handicapped Gurevich.
 
The semifinal match between two players (Gatta & Gallaluca) who’d already lost to Idrais once went double hill, with Gatta eventually earning the right to face Idrais a second, and, as it turned out, a third time. Gatta came into the opening set of the finals with proverbial ‘guns a-blazing’ and promptly shut him out. Idrais almost returned the favor. He allowed Gatta only a single rack in a 5-1, second set win that earned him the event title.
 
Tour director Marc Dionne thanked the ownership and staff at Maxamillians Billiards, as well as sponsors Ozone Billiards, Molinari, Bert Kinister, AZBilliards, Inside English, Professor Q-ball’s National Pool and 3-Cushion News, Delta 13 Racks, MJS Construction, Bob Campbell, Championship Cloth, and OTLVISE Billiard Mechanics of America. Stop #8, scheduled for Saturday, December 2, will be a $500-added event, hosted by World Championship Billiards in Manchester, CT.