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D’Alfonso comes back from a loss to win Joe Brown Memorial on New England 9-Ball Series

(l to r): TD Marc Dionne, Dave Morrison, Tom D’Alfonso, Mike Verducci and Jen Brown, daughter of Joe

Going into the finals, there had been three distinct phases to Tom D’Alfonso’s victory on the New England 9-Ball Series’ tour stop #15 – The Joe Brown Memorial – on Saturday, March 9. In his opening three matches, he won 90% of the games he played (29-4). During a three-match trip on the loss side, he chalked up 92% of the games he played (24-2). In one match, a winners’ side semifinal, double hill loss, he won only 61.5% of the games he played (5-8; D’Alfonso was racing to 9). He returned from that defeat to face Dave Morrison in a double elimination final and over 20 games, gave up only two racks (90%, exactly). The single loss left D’Alfonso with a deceptively low, although admittedly good 85% overall win percentage in games played. The $500-added event drew 49 entrants to Buster’s Billiards in Somersworth, NH.
After an opening round bye in the event’s upper bracket, D’Alfonso gave up a surprising (only in hindsight) three racks to Jeff Provencher in a 9-3 win. Over the next 21 games in two matches, he gave up only one, to Matt Gagne, first, and then, none at all to Fred White, which set D’Alfonso up to face Mike Verducci in a winners' side semifinal. Morrison, in the meantime, working in the lower bracket following a bye, had defeated Catherine Ong 5-3, Walter Kelly 4-4 (Kelly racing to 6) and shut out Carlton Gagnon, to face Jason Seavey in the other winners’ side semifinal.
In a straight-up race to 5, Morrison advanced to the hot seat match over Seavey 5-1. Verducci started his winners’ side semifinal match against D’Alfonso with four on the wire in a race to 9. He chalked up the five he needed and sent D’Alfonso to the loss side, double hill 5-8.
On the loss side, D’Alfonso picked up Fred White, who, in a straight-up race to 6, defeated Carlos Aguilar 6-3 and then, with three games on the wire in a race to 7, beat Ben LeBlanc 4-1. Seavey drew Fred Gillis, who’d eliminated Carlton Gagnon, double hill (4-3) and Walt Kelly 4-2.
In a straight-up race to 4, Seavey advanced to the quarterfinals 4-2 over Gillis. D’Alfonso, giving White four on the wire in a race to 8, shut him out to join Seavey in the quarterfinals. Also giving both Seavey and later, in the semifinals, Verducci, four on the wire in races to eight, D’Alfonso defeated them both 8-1.
Giving Morrison in the hot seat five on the wire in races to 9, D’Alfonso took the opening set of the true double elimination final 9-2. He didn’t give up a single rack in the second set and claimed the Joe Brown Memorial title.
Tour director Marc Dionne thanked the ownership and staff at Buster’s Billiards for their hospitality and support for the Joe Brown Memorial, as well as sponsors Predator Cues, 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, Bourgeois Farms and OTLVISE Billiard Mechanics of America. The next stop on the New England 9-Ball Series (#16) will be the $1,000-added Players Championship, scheduled for this weekend (March 16-17) at Yale Billiards in Wallingford, CT.

Nagle goes undefeated to claim Joss Tour stop #13

Adam Devoe (room owner), Bucky Souvanthong, Bruce Nagle and Mike Zuglan

Last week's quarterfinal match on the Joss Northeast Open 9-Ball Tour (stop #12) turned into this past week's finals (stop #13), as Bruce Nagle completed an undefeated run through a field of 39 entrants, defeating Bucky Souvanthong in the finals, to claim the title. The $1,500-added event ($500-added to Second Chance tournament), held on the weekend of March 18-19, was hosted by King Smiley Billiards in Fort Edward, NY. 
Nagle and Souvanthong advanced through the bracket to the winners' side semifinals. Nagle made it out of them, Souvanthong did not. Nagle sent Nick Brucato to the loss side 9-2, as Steve Lillis downed Souvanthong, double hill. Nagle claimed the hot seat 9-5 over Lillis and waited for Souvanthong to complete a three-match, loss-side trip.
On the loss side, Souvanthong picked up Noah Wells, who, after being awarded a bye, was defeated by Brucato in the event's second round, and was in the midst of a five-match, loss-side winning streak that was about to end. Wells had most recently downed Fred Gokey and Dave LeBrun, both 9-5. Brucato drew a re-match against Brent Boemmels, whom he'd defeated on the winners' side, just after sending Wells over. Boemmels was in the midst of a four-match, loss-side winning streak, having recently defeated Ben Werblow, double hill, and Dave Fernandez 9-5.
Souvanthong and Boemmels advanced to the quarterfinals; Boemells successfully wreaking his vengeance on Brucato, in a tightly contested match, 9-7, and Souvanthong sending Wells home 9-4. Souvanthong then defeated Boemmels 9-6 and Lillis, in the semifinals, 9-5.
In the finals, Souvanthong chalked up more racks against Nagle than any of Nagle's previous opponents, but it wasn't enough. Nagle hung on to complete his undefeated run 9-6, and though he's chalked up two wins on Second Chance tournaments on this year's tour (2016-2017), according to our records, this was his first Joss Tour main event win.
In the $500-added Second Chance Tournament, which drew 20 entrants, Frank Sorriento, who was runner-up in the March 11-12 Second Chance Tournament, won five on the loss side,  to challenge and eventually double-dip hot seat occupant Dave LeBrun.  Sorriento had survived a double hill battle versus Mike Shoemaker in the 5/6 matches, and over the next four matches, including the double set final gave up only one rack; to Mike Verducci in the semifinals. He finished with two shutouts over LeBrun.
In addition to the prize winners in both events, David Dumas was the raffle winner of a $1,500 Joss Cue. Players are reminded that the site for the next stop on the tour (#14), scheduled for April 8-9, has been changed from Salt City Billiards in Syracuse to Hippo's House of Billiards in Utica. Salt City Billiards was destroyed in an early morning fire last month (Feb. 8). No one was injured in the blaze, and though owners are optimistic about rebuilding, no final decisions have been made. 
Joss Tour director Mike Zuglan is continuing to remind players that entries for Turning Stone XXVIII, scheduled for Aug. 31- Sept 3 are filling up fast, with nearly three-quarters of the field already registered. Visit the Turning Stone Web site (, or contact Zuglan, for further information.