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Ussery and Vance split top prizes at Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour stop in TN

BJ Ussery

In what shaped up to be only his second cash finish on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour, Reid Vance, in agreement with BJ Ussery, opted out of a final match at the February 22-23 stop on the tour. It was Vance’s second finish as runner-up, having finished behind Ricky Bingham at a stop in September, 2018. Vance had gotten into the hot seat at that event, only to be double-dipped by Bingham in the true double elimination final. This time, around, at the same location – Borderline Billiards in Bristol, TN – it was BJ Ussery in the hot seat, with Vance coming from the loss side to challenge and ultimately, to negotiate an equitable split of the top two cash prizes. The event drew 68 entrants to Borderline Billiards.
 
They might have met in the hot seat match, had Joe Edmisten not defeated Vance in one of the winners’ side semifinals 5-4 (Vance racing to 6). Edmisten went on to face Ussery, who’d sent Hank Powell west 12-4 in the other winners’ side semifinal. Ussery and Edmisten fought to double hill (11-4) before Ussery prevailed in what proved to be his last match.
 
On the loss side, Vance began his three-match trip back to the finals against Anthony Mabe, who’d defeated Tyler Mayfield 7-3 and Jaiden Hess 7-1 to reach him. Hank Powell picked up a rematch against a former junior player, Anthony Adams, whom he’d defeated in the event’s second round. Adams embarked on a nine-match, loss side winning streak that had most recently included victories over Matt Shaw 6-3 and Brandon Helton 6-1.
 
Vance got into the quarterfinals with a 6-4 win over Mabe. He was joined by Adams, who’d battled in his Powell rematch to double hill before advancing to take on Vance. Though Adams would battle Vance to double hill as well in those quarterfinals, Vance prevailed in the end.
 
Vance made short work of Edmisten in the semifinals that followed. Vance’s 6-1 victory assured him at minimum, another runner-up finish on the tour. The agreement with Ussery to split made it official. As the undefeated occupant of the hot seat, Ussery claimed the official title.
 
Tour directors Herman and Angela Parker thanked Janet Atwell and her staff at Borderline Billiards, as well as title sponsor Viking Cues, Bar Pool Tables, Delta 13 Racks, AZ Billiards and Tickler Pool Ball Washing Machine. The next stop on the tour, scheduled for March 1-2, will be the 2020 NC State 9-Ball Open, a $500-added event, hosted by Randolph’s Billiards in Hickory, NC.

Abernathy wins seven on the loss side, two in finals to claim Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball title

Jeff Abernathy

Jeff Abernathy’s been chalking up wins at regional tours and nation-wide majors for almost 20 years now. He’s a regular at the annual Derby City Classic, cashed in three US Open 9-Ball Championships and been a thorn in the side of competitors all over the United States map. He won the Super Billiards Expo’s Amateur Championship in 2013, was runner-up in the APA National Amateur Championships in 2014, was runner-up to Mike Davis in the 2017 NC State 9-Ball Championships and 4th in that event last year. But like most pool careers, his bears the stamp of that age-old pool-related question, often asked by potential financial supporters: What have you done for me lately?
On the weekend of March 16-17, at a stop on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour, the answer to that question was: won seven on the loss side and double-dipped the hot seat occupant (Stevie McClinton) to add another title to a growing list. The event drew 51 entrants to Janet Atwell’s Borderline Billiards in Bristol, TN.
Abernathy got sent to the loss side by Keith Young in the event’s third round to embark on his loss-side trip. It was a loss he’d avenge later, on his way to the event title. Young advanced to the winners’ side semifinal against McClinton, as Matt Shaw and Trevor Stanley squared off in the other one. McClinton sent Young to his re-match against Abernathy with a 7-2 win. Shaw joined him in the hot seat match with a 7-3 win over Stanley. McClinton chalked up his last win 7-5 over Shaw to claim the hot seat.
On the loss side, Young walked into his re-match against Abernathy immediately. Abernathy, four matches into his seven-match winning streak, had recently defeated Ron Frank 9-3, and, moving into the money rounds, Dustin Booth 8-3. Stanley drew Hank Powell (winner of a stop on the tour two weeks ago), who’d picked up a forfeit win over Robert Ingold and eliminated Ricky Bingham 7-1.
Abernathy downed Young 9-2 and in the quarterfinals, faced Stanley, who’d defeated Powell, double hill (6-6). Abernathy defeated Stanley in those quarterfinals and earned his shot at McClinton in the hot seat by defeating Shaw, both 9-3.
With McClinton racing to 7, Abernathy took the opening set of the true double elimination final 9-5. He bore down a touch or two harder in the second set, winning that one 9-3 and claiming the event title.
Tour directors Herman and Angela Parker thanked Janet Atwell and her Borderline Billiards staff for their hospitality, as well as title sponsor Viking Cues, Bar Pool Tables, Delta 13 Racks, AZ Billiards and Professor Q-Ball. The next stop on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour, scheduled for this weekend (March 23-24) will be another two-event weekend at another new venue for the tour. On Saturday, March 23, Rack ‘N Grill II in Augusta, GA, will host a $500-added handicapped tournament. On Sunday, March 24, they’ll play host as well to a $250-added Open tournament (both 9-ball).

Shabib comes back from first-set loss to win Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour Championships

Raed Shabib

It is, for those keeping score, the exact same headline (with a name changed to reflect the difference) that was used to describe Raed Shabib’s last win on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour in September, 2017. On the weekend of December 15-16 in 2018, Shabib, once again, navigated his way through a field of entrants to get into the hot seat, was defeated in the first set of a double elimination final, and came back to win the second set to claim the event title. The occasion this time was the annual Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Invitational Tour Championships. The $1,000-added event drew 87 entrants to Borderline Billiards in Bristol, TN.
 
This victory took a little longer, given the 3-times-plus-a-little number of entrants that were on hand at Borderline Billiards. In the time it took Shabib to get about halfway through this one, he’d already won the 2017 event. Shabib worked his way through the field to arrive at a winners’ side semifinal match against Brian James. Lee O’Neal, in the meantime, met up with Brandon Stiltner.
 
Shabib downed James 8-3, as O’Neal was sending Stiltner west 5-4 (Stiltner racing to 6). Shabib then claimed the hot seat 8-4 over O’Neal and waited on his return.
 
On the loss side, Stiltner picked up Jason Potts, who’d recently defeated Matt Shaw 7-3 and Stevie Thomas 7-1. James drew Tyler Mayfield, who’d eliminated Stevie McClinton, double hill and Mike Clevinger 6-4. Potts defeated Stiltner 7-4 and in the quarterfinals, faced James, who’d sent Mayfield home 6-4.
 
James advanced another step, defeating Potts 6-4 in those quarterfinals, before O’Neal downed him in the semifinals 5-4 (James racing to 6). With Shabib racing to 8, O’Neal took the opening set of the true double elimination final 5-4. Shabib came back in the second set and allowed O’Neal only a single rack to claim the event title.
 
Tour directors Herman and Angela Parker thanked Janet Atwell and her Borderline Billiards staff for their hospitality, as well as title sponsor Viking Cues, Bar Pool Tables, Delta 13 Racks, AZ Billiards and Professor Q-Ball. The first stop on the 2019 Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour will precede the New Year by nine days. Scheduled for this weekend, December 22-23, the $500-added event ($1,000, with 50 or more entrants) will be hosted by The Steakhorse Restaurant & Billiards in Spartanburg, SC.

Fowler chalks up second Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball title

Billy Fowler

As is known to be the case with real estate, success at the tables could arguably be about “location, location, location.” On the weekend of March 10-11, Billy Fowler won his second Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball title by going undefeated through a field of 70 entrants, gathered for a $500-added event, hosted by Cue Time in Spartanburg, SC. It was the same location where he’d won his first Q City 9-Ball title, about two years ago (August 2016).
 
The two wins were almost identical. In the earlier, first victory, Fowler’s bid at an undefeated run was spoiled by Billy Carroll, who took the opening set of a true double elimination final. Fowler rallied to take the second set and the title. In this most recent event, Fowler’s match record went unblemished, in spite of a seven-match (one forfeit), loss-side run by Greg Burke, who’d been defeated by Fowler, double hill in an earlier winners’ side match.
 
Fowler benefited, as well, from a forfeited match, same player, in a winners’ side semifinal. Unable to attend the second day of this tournament, Mike Wise was forced to forfeit his winners’ side semifinal match, which put Fowler into the hot seat match. He faced Brian Warren, who’d sent Daniel Rutledge to the loss side 6-2. Fowler claimed the hot seat 8-4, and waited for Burke to finish his loss-side run.
 
On the loss side, Burke chalked up wins #3 and #4 against Danny Turner (8-1), and Matt Shaw (8-4) before, thanks to a second forfeit by Wise, advancing directly to the quarterfinals. Rutledge had drawn Matt Gibson, who’d defeated Calvin Lee 5-4 and Jim Jennings 5-3, before downing Rutledge 5-4 (Rutledge racing to 6) and joining Burke in the quarterfinals.
 
Burke eliminated Gibson 8-3 in those quarterfinals, and gave up only a single rack to Warren in the semifinals that followed. The momentum didn’t help much. Fowler took the opening set of the true double elimination final 8-4 over Burke to end it and claim his second Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball title.
 
Tour directors Herman and Angela Parker thanked the ownership and staff at Cue Time, as well as title sponsor Viking Cues, Delta 13 Racks, AZBilliards and Professor Q Ball. The next stop on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour, scheduled for March 17-18, will be a $500-added event, hosted by Q Master Billiards in Virginia Beach, VA. 
 

Coe goes undefeated to win his second Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour stop in Bristol, TN

Dustin Coe

Eighteen months ago, Dustin Coe split a two-set final with Mike Hancock, winning the second set to capture his first Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour title at Janet Atwell’s Borderline Billiards in Bristol, TN. On the weekend of January 20-21, he was having none of that. At an event that drew 53 entrants to Borderline Billiards, he took the opening set of a true double elimination final against Dalton Messer to chalk up his second Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball title.

Coe faced separate opponents in the hot seat and finals of this one. He got into the hot seat match with a 6-3 win over Mike Chapman, while Messer was being defeated by 15-year-old Cameron Lawhorne 5-3. Coe claimed the hot seat with a 6-1 victory over Lawhorne and waited on Messer’s return.

On the loss side, Messer picked up Scott Howard, who’d defeated Bear Mullins 7-4 and Brandon Kidwell 7-5 to reach him. Chapman drew Brandon Stiltner, who’d eliminated his older brother, Junior Stiltner, and Matt Shaw, both 6-2.

Messer advanced to the quarterfinals 5-4 over Howard (Howard racing to 7). Chapman did not. He was downed by Stiltner 6-3. Messer took completely different paths to win his next two matches and a shot at Coe in the hot seat. He shut out Stiltner 5-0 in the quarterfinals and then, survived a double hill match against Lawhorne in the semifinals.

Coe was taking no chances. He came out gunning in the opening set, allowing Messer only a single rack to claim his second Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball title.

Tour directors Herman and Angela Parker thanked Janet Atwell and her staff at Borderline Billiards, as well as title sponsor Viking Cues, Delta 13 Racks, AZBilliards and Professor Q Ball. The next stop on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour, scheduled for the weekend of January 27-28, will be hosted by Corner Pockets in Fayetteville, NC.

Best and Holliday split top prizes on Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour

(l to r): Taz Holliday & Blade Best

 

Blade Best and Taz Holliday split the top two prizes on the Viking Cues' Q City 9-Ball Tour stop on the weekend of July 29-30. As the undefeated player, Best chalked up the official title win of the event that drew 39 entrants to Borderline Billiards in Bristol, TN.
 
Best advanced through the 64-player bracket to face Scott Howard in one of the winners' side semifinals, as Bill Eisenhard faced Brandon Kidwell in the other one. Kidwell had just sent Holliday to the loss side. Best sent Howard over 6-6 (Howard racing to 8), as Eisenhard was at work defeating Kidwell 7-3. Best claimed the hot seat over Eisenhard 6-5 (Eisenhard racing to 7) in what proved to be his last match.
 
On the loss side, Holliday opened his trip to the finals with a double hill win over renowned trick shot artist Chris Woodrum, and followed it with a shutout over Terry Lawson. This set Holliday up against Howard, coming over from his defeat in the winners' side semifinal. Kidwell picked up Jerry Varnado, who'd defeated Jerry Hilton 8-6 and Matt Shaw, double hill, to reach him.
 
Holliday won a double hill battle against Howard to advance to the quarterfinals. Varnado spoiled a Holliday/Kidwell re-match with an 8-1 victory over Kidwell to join Holliday.
 
Holliday eliminated Varnado 6-3 and then fought his third loss-side double hill match against Eisenhard in the semifinals, winning it for a shot against Best in the hot seat. They opted out of that final match, granting Best the official title.
 
Tour director Herman Parker thanked Janet Atwell and her staff at Borderline Billiards, as well as title sponsor Viking Cues, Delta 13 Racks, AZBilliards and Professor Q Ball. The next stop on the Viking Cues' Q City 9-Ball Tour, scheduled for Aug. 5-6, will be hosted by Legends Billiards in Inman, SC.
 

Musselman goes undefeated to take Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball stop

Jody Musselman survived a double hill opening set of the finals versus Scott Howard, who'd won five on the loss side for the right to meet him, and chalked up an undefeated win on the Viking Cues' Q City 9-Ball Tour on the weekend of October 22-23. The event drew 39 entrants to Borderline Billiards in Bristol, TN.
 
 
With his eventual finals opponent already at work on the loss side, Musselman advanced to a winners' side semifinal against Blade Best (who'd just sent Howard to the loss side). In the other winners' side semifinal, 15-year-old Dakota Harris, one of a few junior players who competed in the event, squared off against Mike Gann. Musselman sent Best to the loss side 6-1, and in the hot seat match, faced the teenager, Harris, who'd defeated Gann 6-6 (Gann racing to 8). Musselman sent Harris to the semifinals 6-4 and sat in the hot seat, waiting on Howard.
 
 
On the loss side, Howard opened his five-match, loss-side run with wins against Matt Shaw 7-1, and Dustin Coe 7-3 to draw Gann. Best drew another of the junior competitors, Eric Roberts (13), who was in the midst of his own six-match, loss-side run that would take him as far as the first money round, battling for advancement to the quarterfinals. He won his fifth and sixth loss- side matches against Steve Dye, double hill, and Rick Roper 5-4 (Roper racing to 7).
 
 
Best ended Roberts' run 5-2 and advanced to the quarterfinals against Howard, who'd eliminated Gann 7-5. Howard then downed both Best in the quarterfinals and Harris in the semifinals by a 7-3 score.
 
 
Howard would need to defeat Musselman twice in the true double elimination finals, and, racing to 7, win an extra rack to claim each set. The two battled to double hill (6-6) in the opening set, before Musselman completed his undefeated run and claimed the event title.
 
 
Tour director Herman Parker thanked Janet Atwell and her Borderline Billiards' staff, as well as title sponsor Viking Cues, Delta-13 racks and Ruthless Billiards. The next stop on the Viking Cues' Q City 9-Ball Tour, scheduled for the weekend of October 29-30, will be hosted by Brass Tap in Raleigh, NC. An 8-ball event, the tournament will be a qualifier for the NC State 8-Ball Championships, scheduled for November 5-6 at Breaktime Billiards in Cary, NC.

“Hennessee from Tennessee” Pinegar comes from the loss side to take Q City 9-Ball stop

Playing in a primarily amateur field, Jonathan "Hennessee from Tennessee" Pinegar was taxed with racing to 12, and though he wound up on the loss side of the December 19-20 stop on the Q City 9-Ball Tour, he won seven straight, including a victory over the man who'd sent him there – J.T. Ringgold – and the hot seat occupant, Dustin Coe. Pinegar won the final event of the tour's 2015 season, which drew 50 entrants to Janet Atwell's Borderline Billiards in Bristol, TN.
 
Having sent Pinegar to the loss side, Ringgold advanced to a winners' side semifinal against Coe. Justin Espinoza, in the meantime, squared off against Daniel Mobley. Coe sent Ringgold to an eventual loss-side rematch against Pinegar with a double hill win (5-7), as Espinoza downed Mobley 8-4. Coe grabbed the hot seat, his final win, 5-2.
 
On the loss side, Pinegar launched his seven-match winning streak that saw him give up only 15 racks through 97 games. He started with a 12-5 victory over Scott Largen, and followed it with a shutout over Jerry Varnado, which set him up for a match against Mobley. Ringgold picked up Trey Frank, who'd defeated Matt Shaw, double hill and J.T. Ringgold's father, Terry, 7-3.
 
Pinegar earned his rematch against the younger Ringgold with a 12-3 victory over Mobley, while Ringgold was eliminating Frank 8-4. Over the next 55 games, Pinegar gave up only seven racks. He gave up most of those (4) in his rematch against Ringgold in the quarterfinals. He didn't give up any against Justin Espinoza in the semifinals. 
 
With Coe racing to five, Pinegar needed to defeat him twice, and he did so, handily. He took the first set of the true double elimination final 2-1 and stepped up his game to win the second 2-1.
 
The Q City 9-Ball Tour will hold its Tour Championship on New Year's weekend, January 2-3. The $1,000-added event, featuring the invited top 80 players on the tour, will be hosted by Brown's Billiards in Raleigh, NC.

Hollinsworth and Tickle claim double header titles on Q City 9-Ball Tour

The Q City 9-Ball Tour held a double header weekend; commencing with a Saturday, September 19 event that drew 59 entrants, and concluding with a $300-added event that drew 37, which actually began on Saturday night and finished up on Sunday, September 20. Neither event saw a final match, as all four competitors opted out of a final and split the money. The top prize in both events included qualification for a North Carolina 8-ball Championship, scheduled for November. The events were hosted by Chandler's Chalk and Cue in Statesville, NC. 
 
Ryan Hollinsworth went undefeated in the Saturday opener, and finished in the tie for fifth in the Sunday event. David Tickle, who finished in fourth place on Saturday, was defeated in the hot seat match of Sunday's event, and returned from the semifinals to face Colin Hall. The match didn't occur. Tickle and Hall split the top two prizes, and while the undefeated Hall would normally have been declared the winner, Hall deferred to give Tickle the qualification prize to November's 8-Ball championship.
 
On Saturday, Hollinsworth  advanced to a winners' side semifinal against Matt Shaw, while Terry Ringgold met up with Scott Lewis. With Lewis racing to 10, Ringgold defeated Lewis 4-7, as Hollinsworth was downing Shaw 7-4. Hollinsworth claimed the hot seat, and for all intents and purposes, the event title with his 7-3 win over Ringgold.
 
Lewis and Shaw moved to the loss side and were immediately handed their second straight loss. Lewis fell to David Tickle 8-7. Shaw ran into Brian Bryant, whom he'd sent to the loss side in an earlier round. Bryant faced and defeated Shaw 8-3 while in the midst of a seven-match, loss-side run that would propel him into the finals. Bryant moved on to defeat Tickle 8-4 in the quarterfinals and punctuated what proved to be his final match by shutting out Ringgold in the semifinals. He and Hollinsworth opted out of the final and split $1,330.
 
On Sunday, Colin Hall and Tickle would have met twice had they opted to play a final match, but they met only once, in the battle for the hot seat. Hall had sent Johnny Walker to the loss side 6-5, as Tickle was defeating Hollinsworth 8-5. Hall claimed the hot seat with a 6-2 win over Tickle.
 
Like Shaw and Lewis in Saturday's event, Walker and Hollinsworth moved to the loss side and were immediately defeated for the second straight time; Walker, 8-3, by Mike Bumgarner, and Hollinsworth 6-3 by Jamie Fells. Fells eliminated Bumgarner 6-4 in the quarterfinals, but was himself eliminated 8-4 by Tickle in the semifinals. Tickle and Hall split the top two prizes, amounting to $880.
 
The next stop on the Q City 9-Ball Tour, scheduled for Saturday, September 26, will be hosted by Breaktime Billiards in Winston-Salem, NC.