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Ming Ng double dips Kraber to win 1st stop of On the Ball Ladies Tour in Houston

Ming Ng

Though Ming Ng has been slightly more ‘active’ this year than she was the year before (cashing in seven events this year vs. five events in 2020), last year was more productive for her financially because she won three of the five events in which she’d competed; the first stop on the Gulf Coast Women’s Regional Tour, the second stop on the former Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour and the Ladies Division of the 47th Annual Texas Open. Ng won her first 2021 event this past weekend (Oct. 16-17) when she took two out of three matches against Jennifer Kraber to win the opening stop of the On the Ball Ladies Tour (formerly the Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour). The $2,000-added event drew 19 entrants to Bogie’s Billiards in Houston, TX.

After an opening round bye, Ng got by Darcy Durham 7-4 and Kim Sanders 7-3 to arrive at a winners’ side semifinal matchup versus tour director Teresa Garland. Kraber, in the meantime, also with an opening round bye, had dispatched Natalie Mans and Cheyenne Valdez, both 7-4, to draw her winners’ side semifinal opponent, Courtney Peters.

Twenty-five games later, Ng and Kraber advanced to face each other in the hot seat match. Ng and Garland had battled to double hill before Ng prevailed, while Kraber and Peters came within a game of double hill (6-5), before Kraber chalked up the 7th rack that earned her the right to face Ng. Kraber then defeated Ng in their first of three, 7-3 to claim the hot seat.

On the loss side, Peters drew Chris Fields, who’d lost her opening round match in a double hill battle versus Kim Pierce and was working on a four-match, loss-side winning streak that had recently eliminated Kim Sanders and, in a rematch, Kim Pierce, both 7-5. Garland picked up Yvonne Asher, who’d been defeated by Peters in a winners’ side quarterfinal and had survived two straight double-hill matches against Shayla Neris and Natalie Rocha.

Peters and Fields battled back and forth to double hill before Peters advanced to the quarterfinals. Garland joined her after allowing Asher only a single rack. Peters did likewise to Garland in the quarterfinals, advancing to the semifinals 7-1.

The semifinals was about which of the two competitors who’d already been defeated once by the occupant of the hot seat, Jennifer Kraber, was going to get a second shot at her. Ming Ng earned the right at that second shot with a 7-3 victory over Peters.

Much as the two winners’ side semifinal matches had required 25 games to advance two competitors to the hot seat match, the true double elimination finals required 25 games to advance one of the competitors into the winners’ circle. Ng and Kraber fought to double hill in the opening set before Ng prevailed to force the second set. She took the second set 7-5 to claim the first event title of the On the Ball Ladies Tour.

Tour representatives thanked the ownership and staff at Bogie’s Billiards for their hospitality, as well as title sponsor On the Ball. The next stop on the tour will be the $3,000-added tour finale, scheduled for the weekend of Nov. 20-21 at Skinny Bob’s in Round Rock, TX.

Peters Pockets Win On Gulf Coast Tour

Courtney Peters

Courtney Peters lost her second match, and fought her way through some of the toughest female competitors Texas has to offer, to capture the second stop on the 2021 Gulf Coast Women’s Regional Billiards Tour. In the end, Peters faced off with Kim Pierce, defeating her, 7-2, 5-3, in the true, double elimination final.

On April 24th-25th, 2021, sponsors Poison by Predator Cues, Predator Cues, APA of North Harris County, Alamo Billiards, Outsville Billiards, Team StraightPool Eye, Southern Streaming, and Slick Willies Family Pool Hall (5319 Westheimer) in Houston, Texas, facilitated another successful event for women pool players. This event was $500 added, drew 23 players, and paid out $960 in prize money. As always, Slick Willies provided premium amenities, including twenty-three, Brunswick 8’ Tables, in a smoke-free environment. Predator Arcos II Pool Balls and Accu-Racks by Outsville Billiards were provided for each table. 

Following a first round bye, and defeating Natalie Rocha in her second match, 7-6, Courtney Peters lost her third round match to Ming Ng, 7-3. Peters was relegated to the one-loss side, early, where she had much work ahead of her. Along with Peters, Ng also defeated Verda Jones, and Danni Ladd, 7-1, to reach the winners’ side, final four. Brenda Gunter bested Nikki Richard, 7-6, and Mary McHaney, 7-5, while newcomer Robyn Richardson ousted junior player Aubree Kennedy, 7-3, Blanca Camarillo, 7-5, and Bethany Leger, 7-5. Rounding out the final four, Kim Pierce denied Brittany Kromer, 7-1, newcomer Donna Charleston, 7-3, and Cari Balusek, 7-6. On the one-loss side, Richard won five in a row after losing her second round match. Richard eliminated Esther Castaneda, 5-3, Kennedy, and Balusek, 5-4, settling into the final eight. After losing her first match, Kromer was making a comeback on the one-loss side with wins over Rocha, 5-2, and Melissa Fuller, 5-1. Kromer fell to Leger, 5-4, just shy of the final eight. Michelle Abernathy dusted off Jones, 5-2, Charleston, and McHaney, 5-2.  Sara Bork made her bid, ending Ruth Paine, 5-3, and Camarillo, 5-3, but was eliminated by Peters, 5-3.  It was shutout-city on the winners’ side, as Ng and Pierce advanced, sending Gunter and Richardson to the west side. It was Ng versus Pierce for the hot seat, which was an all-too familiar scene. Once again, Pierce proved worthy, beating Ng, 7-6, and on her way to back-to-back victories. On the west side, Peters sent home Abernathy, 5-2, while Richard ended Gunter, 5-3. Peters went on to overwhelm Richard, 5-0, and Ng, 5-3, securing her fifth match win, and earning a spot in the finals. While Pierce was vying for her second, consecutive tournament win, Peters was searching for her first. Peters was in rapid-fire mode, ending the first set, 7-2. In the second set, Peters maintained her momentum, closing out the race, 5-3. This is Peters’ first Tour win of 2021, and just one of several  tournament wins in her Gulf Coast Tour career.  

The Tour welcomed new players Donna Charleston, Brenda Gunter, Ann Monzano, Robyn Richardson, and junior players, Aubree Kennedy and Lexi Balusek. Following a five match winning streak, Nikki Richard achieved a top four finish, while Brenda Gunter and Robyn Richardson placed 5th-6th. Finally, Gulf Coast would like to acknowledge Board Members Ruth Paine, Kim Pierce, and Ming Ng, who assisted with the players meeting and bracket updates.

The next event will be held June 5th-6th, 2021, at Slick Willies Family Pool Hall, located at 5913 Westheimer, Houston, Texas 77057. For more information, please visit www.GulfCoastWomensTour.com, or email lonestartour@gmail.com.  

Eaton wins her first 2021 event, going undefeated on Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour

Gail Eaton

Since her first recorded cash prize at an event, winning a stop on the Texas Express Tour, almost exactly 22 years ago (the weekend of June 24-26, 1999), Gail Eaton has become an ongoing force to be reckoned with at the tables. Records indicate that she failed to cash in only two of those 22 years (’10, ’12) and in her best year (2017), she won six out of the 15 events in which she cashed. She’s competed in events and tours from one end of the country to the other. From the J. Pechauer Northeast Women’s Tour in the East to the WPBA Pacific Coast Classic in the West. Over the years, she racked up a total of 10 wins on the Gulf Coast Women’s Regional Tour.

This past weekend (June 19-20), she went undefeated at Stop #2 on the Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour to chalk up her first, post-pandemic win. The $2,000-added event drew 26 entrants to Skinny Bob’s Billiards in Round Rock, TX.

Eaton faced separate opponents in the hot seat and finals of this event. She got by Michelle Cortez, Molly McWhorter, and Kim Pierce to draw Yvonne Asher in one of the winners’ side semifinals. Kim Sanders, in the meantime, had defeated Christy Grigsby, Marilina Nieves, and Margaret Fox to pick up Chris Fields in the other winners’ side semifinal. Fields had just sent the other eventual finalist, Ming Ng, to the loss side.

Sanders and Fields battled to double hill before Sanders prevailed for a spot in the hot seat match. Eaton joined her after sending Asher to the loss side 7-1. Eaton claimed the hot seat over Sanders 7-3 and waited for Ming Ng to complete her five-match, loss-side winning streak.

On the loss side, it was Asher who picked up Ming Ng, two matches into her loss-side winning streak, having shut out McWhorter and eliminated Jennifer Kraber 7-3. Fields drew Natalie Rocha, who’d lost a winners’ side quarterfinal to Asher and then defeated Michelle Cortez 7-2 and survived a double hill fight versus Kim Pierce.

Ng gave up only a single rack to Asher and advanced to the quarterfinals. Fields joined her after eliminating Rocha 7-4.

Ng and Fields locked up in a double hill fight in the subsequent quarterfinals, eventually won by Ng. Ng then downed Sanders 7-2 in the semifinals for a shot at Eaton in the hot seat.

Eaton completed her undefeated run with a 7-3 win over Ng in the finals.

Tour representatives thanked the ownership and staff at Skinny Bob’s for their hospitality, as well as title sponsor Jerry Olivier Cues. The next stop on the Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour, scheduled for July 31- August 1, will be a $2,000-added event, hosted by Stixx & Stones Billiards in Lewisville, TX. 

Peters goes undefeated to win season opener on Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour

Courtney Peters

In her first cash finish in 2021, back in January, Courtney Peters had the misfortune of running into Russia’s Kristina Tkach, who was working on a seven-match, loss-side winning streak when she showed up in the semifinals of the Michael Montgomery Memorial Tournament at Snookered in Frisco, TX. As it happened, the same misfortune befell hot seat occupant-at-the-time Tara Williams, who lost both sets of the true double elimination final that followed the Tkach/Peters semifinal. Though neither Tkach nor Williams were on hand for the $2,000-added season opener of the Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour, held this past weekend (May 22-23) at Big Tyme Billiards in Spring, TX, Peters did have 36 of some of the state’s best female competitors to contend with, including alumni from the Montgomery Memorial – Tam Trinh, Ming Ng and Robyn Petrosino. Peters went undefeated through the field to claim her first (recorded) event title since she came from the loss side to double dip hot seat occupant Robyn Petrosino on the Gulf Coast Women’s tour back in July, 2018.

The 37-entrant field required a 64-player bracket and Peters was one of only 10 women who played in the opening round of the event; all the other ladies were awarded byes. Peters started by facing and defeating two Teresas in a row and giving up only a single rack through the two matches. She shut out Teresa Ballenger and gave up the single rack to Teresa Garland. Nicole Daniel put up a bit of a fight against her next, but Peters prevailed 7-5 and went back to giving up a single rack in her match versus Michelle Yim. This put her into a winners’ side semifinal against Kim Pierce. The aforementioned (twice) Robyn Petrosino, in the meantime, did get a bye and then defeated Ruth Paine, the also-aforementioned Tam Trinh 7-2 and Stephanie Reyes 7-1 to draw the also-aforementioned Ming Ng in the other winners’ side semifinal.

Peters got into the hot seat match with a 7-5 win over Pierce. And shades of that Gulf Coast Women’s Tour, Petrosino joined her, after surviving a double hill fight against Ng. Three years ago, it was Petrosino who grabbed the hot seat. This year, Peters took it 7-4 and waited on what turned out to be the return of Ming Ng.

On the loss side, Kim Pierce picked up Cristina Schneider, who’d lost a winners’ side quarterfinal, double hill battle to Ming Ng and then, defeated Terry Petrosino 7-3 and won another double hill fight against Janeen Lee. Ming Ng drew Tam Trinh, who followed her defeat at the hands of Robyn Petrosino with a four-match, loss-side winning streak that had most recently included wins over Michelle Yim and Jennifer Kraber, both 7-4.

Ng and Trinh locked up in a double hill struggle that eventually sent Ng to the quarterfinals. Schneider earned the rematch against Ng by defeating Pierce 7-5. Ng defeated Schneider a second time (7-3) to earn her own rematch against Petrosino in the semifinals.

Four of the last six standing in this Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour season opener in 2021 were four of the last six in that Gulf Coast Women’s Regional Tour event won by Peters three years ago; Peters, Ming Ng, Robyn Petrosino and Kim Pierce.

Ng was picking up speed on the loss side. She fought to double hill in her first loss-side match, gave up three racks in her second and in the semifinal rematch against Petrosino, only one. It was not, though, enough, to derail Peters’ undefeated run, which she completed, downing Ng 7-5 in the finals to claim the event title. 

Tour representatives thanked the ownership and staff at Big Tyme Billiards for their hospitality, as well as title sponsor Jerry Olivier Cues. The next stop on the Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour, scheduled for June 19-20, will be a $2,000-added event, hosted by Skinny Bob’s in Round Rock, TX. 

Pierce Turns Up the Heat at Gulf Coast Tour ‘21 Comeback Event

Kim Pierce

Kim “Texas Heat” Pierce of Pflugerville, Texas, dominated a 52-player field, double-dipping Ming “The Empress” Ng in the finals, 7-4, 5-3, to capture the 2021 Gulf Coast Women’s Regional Billiards Tour “Comeback” 9-Ball Event. Pierce was defeated by Ng in the hot seat, 7-3, but powered her way back to an overtime finals victory.

On March 27th-28th, 2021, sponsors Poison by Predator Cues, Predator Cues, APA of North Harris County, Alamo Billiards, Outsville Billiards, Team StraightPool Eye, Lisa Gutierrez, Southern Streaming, and flagship venue, Big Tyme Billiards in Spring, Texas, produced a “comeback” event for the record books. This marked the first tournament held in a little over one year, since the Gulf Coast Tour shut down amidst the Covid crisis in March 2020. This event drew 52 women players from all across Texas and Louisiana, with $1,000 added, paying out $2,040 in prize money. As always, Big Tyme provided premium amenities, including twenty-three Diamond Bar Tables in a smoke-free environment, and an attentive wait staff, throughout the weekend. Predator sponsored brand new Predator Arcos II Pool Balls for every table, while Outsville Billiards provided the Accu-Racks. All of these amenities made for a very enjoyable, tournament-going experience, and everyone was ecstatic to be back.

On her way to the winners’ side, final four, Kim Pierce defeated Yvonne “The Casher” Asher, Susi Morales, 7-4, Robyn Petrosino, 7-5, and San Antonio’s Jackie Rodriguez, 7-2. Newcomer Gail Cato of Texarkana bested Sandra Melo, Debra Leger, 7-2, Tiffany Johnson, 7-3, and Austin’s Michelle Abernathy, 7-3. Kawania Watson made her trek with wins over Brittany Kromer, 7-5, Jennifer Ramos, 7-3, Natalie Rocha, 7-6, and the “Princess of Pool”, Teresa Garland, 7-2. Rounding out the final four, Ming Ng curbed Sherren Drake, Sophia Lopez, 7-1, Elaine Kebodeaux, 7-3, and Danni Ladd, 7-1. On the west side, and in the final sixteen, Tiffany Benoit dusted off Kebodeaux, 5-3, but fell to Abernathy, 5-0. Rocha eliminated first-timer, Mary McHaney, 5-0, and J. Rodriguez, 5-0, while Maria Rodriguez sent home Johnson and Ladd, by the same score, 5-2. Rounding out the final eight, Melo ousted new player Dani Barnes, 5-2, but was overwhelmed by Garland, 5-1. Back on the east side, final four action witnessed Ng power through Watson, 7-3, and Pierce squeeze by Cato, 7-6. In an all-too familiar, hot seat match, Ng overcame Pierce, 7-3, inching closer to a 2021 premier win. On the one-loss side, Rocha eliminated Abernathy, 5-2, while M. Rodriguez slid past Garland, 5-4. Vying for a spot in the final four of the tournament, Watson took down Rocha, 5-3, while Cato overwhelmed M. Rodriguez, 5-1. Cato made an impressive run for the finish line, but was stopped short by Pierce, 5-3. Once again, Pierce would tee-off against Ng, this time, in a true, double elimination format. A renewed Pierce showed up in the first set, setting the tone, 7-4. In the second set, with Pierce on the hill, an intense safety exchange on the 8-ball ended badly for Ng, and propelled Pierce to a 5-3 victory. Congratulations to Kim Pierce on an impressive, “comeback” win, along with new players Gail Cato and Maria Rodriguez who garnered 3rd and 5th-6th place finishes, respectively.

Gulf Coast Tour Board Members Ruth Paine, Kim Pierce, Ming Ng, and D’Andrea McQuirter, assisted in running a seamless, two-day event. The Tour would like to thank Lisa Gutierrez and Eric Nelson for their generous sponsorship contributions, to help kick-off this comeback tournament.

The next event will be held April 24th-25th, 2021, at Slick Willies Family Pool Hall, located at 5913 Westheimer, Houston, Texas 77057. For more information, please visit www.GulfCoastWomensTour.com.

Ming Ng goes undefeated to successfully defend her Texas Open title

Jenna Bishoff, Ming Ng and Autumn Duncan (Shayla Neris)

In what was only their second ‘big’ event at Skinny Bob’s Billiards in Round Rock, TX, which they purchased last May, the Sanders (Kim and Tracey) held one of the missing events from the 47th Annual Texas Open that had acted as something of a ‘soft opening’ to the renovated facility a few weeks ago. On the weekend of November 21-22, they held the (missing) $5,000-added, 47th Annual Texas Ladies Open, which drew 46 entrants to their location.

Ming Ng went undefeated through that field to defend the title she’d won last year, facing separate opponents in the hot seat and finals. Autumn Duncan navigated through the winners’ side to face Ng in the hot seat match, while Jenna Bishoff, sent to the loss side by Duncan, won six on the loss side to face her in the finals.

While the Sanders concur with the general idea that there’s something to be said for the calmer atmosphere inherent with reduced numbers and (arguably) an all-female crowd, Kim Sanders, for one, prefers the way it was before. She’s hoping that it will be that way again.

“Most of the women are like me,” she said. “They prefer to have it along with the rest of the tournaments. Before, when you had the Ladies event with the Open, the men and women came together and played pool together.”

“The combination makes them feel like they’re part of something bigger,” she added. “It’s just a different atmosphere.”

As pleased with the outcome of the Ladies event as they were with the earlier, larger pair of events, they continue to look forward to a planned week-long 48th Annual Texas Open in 2021.

“It went really well,” said Kim of the Ladies event. “We had a hiccup the first day when one of the matches went a little long, but after that, everything went smoothly.”

Ming Ng’s path to the winners’ circle, after an opening round bye, went through Gigi Callejas 7-1, Jennifer Kraber 7-3 and Kim Pierce, also 7-3, before arriving at a winners’ side semifinal match versus Bernie Store. Autumn Duncan, in the meantime, was also awarded an opening round bye and then downed Cari Balusek 7-2. She sent Bishoff to the loss side and defeated Jackie Karol, both 7-5, before squaring off against Ellen Couvillion in the other winners’ side semifinal.

Ng downed Store 7-2 and hooked up with Duncan, who’d survived a double hill battle versus Couvillion. Ng claimed the hot seat 7-5 over Duncan and waited for Bishoff to complete her loss-side run.

It was Couvillion who ran into Bishoff on the loss side, four matches into her winning streak that had most recently included wins over Michelle Yim 7-1 and Courtney Peters 7-3. Store drew Jennifer Kraber, who, after her defeat at the hands of Ng, went on a four-match winning streak that was about to end and had recently resulted in a shutout over Ricki Casper and a double hill win over Jackie Karol.

Store ended Kraber’s streak 7-2, as Bishoff downed Couvillion 7-4. Bishoff ended Store’s brief time on the loss side 7-1 in the quarterfinals, and then, downed Duncan in the semifinals 7-5.

Ng closed out her undefeated run with a 7-3 victory over Bishoff in the finals.

The Sanders thanked their staff for their hard work as well as sponsors Sanders Roofing & Exterminating, LLC, MinTS Amusements, Hanshew Custom Cues, ABC Supply Co. and GAF.

Ng goes undefeated to claim Stop #2 on Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour

Ming Ng

Having won the season opener of the Gulf Coast Regional Tour in early January and a week later, finished as runner-up at the season opener of the 2020 Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour (JOLT), Ming Ng signed on to compete in Stop #2 of the JOLT and went undefeated to claim the title. She faced separate opponents in the hot seat and finals of this Feb. 29-March 1, $2,000-added  event that drew 27 entrants to Skinny Bob’s in Round Rock, TX.

Ng opened her campaign with victories over Sandra Melo and Tam Trinh before running into Angie Payne, who put up a double hill fight that almost sidetracked Ng’s march to the hot seat. Ng advanced to a winners’ side semifinal against Michelle Cortez, whom she’d face twice, before this was over. Natalie Rocha, in the meantime, who’d battled Ng twice (hot seat and finals) in that Gulf Coast Regional Tour season opener, worked her way through Rachel Hurst, Rosa Cantu and Jennifer Kraber to draw Teresa Garland in the other winners’ side semifinal.

Ng got into the hot seat match with a 7-5 victory over Cortez in their first of two. Rocha joined Ng following a 7-4 victory over Garland. Ng claimed the hot seat 7-4 over Rocha and waited on what turned out to be the return of Cortez.

On the loss side, Garland picked up Angie Payne, who, following her double hill loss to Ng on the winners’ side, downed Yvonne Asher 7-2 and Brittany Williams 7-4. Cortez drew a rematch against Kim Pierce, whom she’d defeated in the second winners’ side round. Pierce was in the midst of a four-match, loss-side winning streak that was about to end and had recently included victories over Jennifer Kraber 7-5 and Tam Trinh 7-3.

Garland eliminated Payne 7-4, as Cortez downed Pierce a second time, 7-5. Cortez and Garland battled to double hill in the quarterfinals before Cortez prevailed for a shot at Rocha in the semifinals.

Cortez completed her brief, successful loss-side run with a 7-4 win over Rocha in those semifinals. Momentum did not appear to be on Cortez’ side in the finals that followed. She’d battled to within a game of double hill in the earlier hot seat match, but could only manage a single rack in the finals. Ng completed her second undefeated 2020 run 7-1 to claim the event title.

A $100-added Best of the Rest Tournament was won by Jennifer Kraber. Yvonne Asher finished as runner-up.

Tour representatives thanked the ownership and staff at Skinny Bob’s, as well as title sponsor Jerry Olivier Cues. The next stop on the Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour, scheduled for the weekend of April 4-5 will be hosted by Diamond Sports Bar in Port Arthur, TX.

World-class trio of Orcollo, Kiamco & Bustamante go 1, 2, 3 at 6th Annual Texas Open 10-Ball

Kraber goes undefeated to win her second Texas Women’s 10-Ball Championship

(l to r): John Palmore, Dennis Orcollo & James Davis, Sr.

Being Texas, it’s never enough to just hold an Open and Ladies 10-Ball tournament every year. Instead, Skinny Bob’s Billiards in Round Rock, TX hosts a six-day extravaganza (this year, from Feb. 12-17) that has a way of feeling like a month-long extravaganza, headlined by the annual Texas 10-Ball Open and Ladies 10-Ball Championships.

Things got underway on Wednesday, Feb. 12 with a 10-Ball mini-tournament, as more or less of a warm-up for events to come. On Thursday, the activity was a Scotch Doubles tournament that was eventually won by the team of Warren Kiamco and Ellen Robinson, who downed John Gabriel and Ellen Jones in the finals. Later in the day, a Banks/Rails game was won Sergio Rivas, who defeated John Demet in the finals. On Friday, an Open Ring game was won by Jeffrey DeLuna, with Sky Woodward as runner-up and John Gabriel in third place.

In the absence of a defending champion (Alex Pagulayan), a few relatively well-known Filipino competitors stepped in to fill the gap at the $4,000-added 6th Annual Texas Open 10-Ball, which got underway on Friday evening. Dennis Orcollo ended up going undefeated through the field. He downed Warren Kiamco twice (hot seat and finals) and waited patiently as Kiamco eliminated Francisco Bustamante in the semifinals. We’ll get back to them in a while, but first. . . the ladies.

The $1,000-added Ladies 10-Ball Championship, which drew 20 entrants, got underway on Saturday. Unlike the Open Championship, the Ladies event featured its defending champion, Gail Eaton. It was won by its 2018 champion, Jennifer Kraber, who went undefeated through the field, downing Courtney Peters twice, hot seat and finals.

Following victories over Kim Pierce, Kelly Jones and Rachel Hurst, Kraber moved into a winners’ side semifinal against Ming Ng. After being awarded an opening round bye, Peters downed Latonia Taylor and Michelle Yim, to draw Nicole McDaniel in the other winners’ side semifinal.

Kraber and Ng locked up in a double hill fight that eventually advanced Kraber to the hot seat match. She was joined by Peters, who’d defeated McDaniel 7-1. Kraber won the first of two versus Peters 7-3 and waited in the hot seat for her return.

On the loss side, Nicole McDaniel drew Kim Sanders, who’d recently eliminated defending champion Gail Eaton and Rachel Hurst, both 5-3. Ming Ng picked up Michelle Yim, who’d defeated Ellen Robinson 5-3 and Kelly Jones 5-2 to reach her.

Yim and Sanders handed Ng and McDaniel their second straight loss; Yim, 5-3 over Ng and Sanders shut McDaniel out to join Yim in the quarterfinals. Yim then did unto Sanders that which Sanders had most recently done to McDaniel; shut her out to advance.

In the semifinals that followed, Yim became the third shutout victim in a row and gave Peters a second shot at Kraber in the hot seat. Peters chalked up two more racks in the finals than she’d chalked up against Kraber in the hot seat match, but they weren’t enough, as Kraber completed her undefeated run 7-5 to claim the Ladies 10-Ball title.

Orcollo backs up Derby City Master of the Table title with undefeated run at Texas Open 10-Ball
It’s only February and Dennis Orcollo has pocketed money that would be the envy of most pool players to earn in an entire year. He finished 16th in the Derby City’s One Pocket Division, 3rd in the 9-Ball Division and won the 9-Ball Banks, all of which earned him the coveted Master of the Table title. All of this followed his victory at the Music City’s Midnight Madness Tournament and his runner-up finish (to Skyler Woodward) in the Music City’s Open Division. He didn’t get a chance to meet Woodward in this event, although Warren Kiamco did.

Robocop (as they call him) got by Kenny Loftis, John Gabriel, Justin Hall, Kevin Guimond and Junior Jueco by an aggregate score of 35-12, giving up just over two racks per match (on average). Orcollo drew Naoyuki Oi in one of the winners’ side semifinals.

Warren Kiamco, in the meantime, started his campaign out with back-to-back shutouts of Thomas Smith and Pat Castro. He then defeated Josh Roberts 7-1, Robert Gomez 7-3 and won a knock-down, drag-out, double hill match versus Sky Woodward (this event’s 2016 champion) to arrive at his winners’ side semifinal matchup with a 35-10 aggregate score and having given up an exact average of two racks per match. Kiamco squared off in his winners’ side semifinal against a very familiar opponent, Francisco Bustamante, who’d sent this event’s 2015 and 2017 champion, Manny Chau to the loss side.

Orcollo sent Oi to the loss side 7-2 and was joined in the hot seat match by Kiamco, who’d defeated Bustamante 7-4. Orcollo and Kiamco played an entertaining double hill hot seat match that eventually sent Kiamco to the semifinals and left Robocop in the hot seat.

On the loss side, Naoyuki Oi drew James Davis, Sr. (known as Strop, because he’s originally from Bastrop, TX), who’d recently defeated two strong opponents in a row to reach him; first Josh Roberts 7-4 and then, Sky Woodward 7-5. Bustamante picked up Roberto Gomez, who’d defeated Junior Jueco 7-1 and Sergio Rivas 7-3 to reach him.

Strop and Oi locked up in a double hill fight, eventually won by Strop. Bustamante joined Strop in the quarterfinals after eliminating Gomez 7-4. Bustamante then sent Davis, Sr. home 7-3 in those quarterfinals.

Those who thought that Bustamante and Kiamco would get into a double hill fight for a shot at Orcollo in the hot seat were disappointed. Kiamco gave up just a single rack and advanced to the finals 7-1 over Bustamante.

One might have been forgiven for believing that with that 7-1 momentum, the final rematch between Kiamco and Orcollo would have been something of an epic struggle. It wasn’t, really. Orcollo shut Kiamco out 7-0 to claim the event title.

Tour directors John Palmore and James Davis, Sr. thanked John and Sue Cielo and their Skinny Bob’s staff for their continued support of this event, to include their hands-on assistance with varied aspects of running the tournament; entries, money management, etc. In addition, noted Palmore, “Kaye Watson is the glue that holds everything together for (Davis) and I. She helps with bracket management and most importantly, that all the the money is correct coming in and going out.” They also thanked event sponsors Simonis, Hanshew Jump Cues and Sleep Inn.

Ng Takes Gulf Coast Tour Season Opener

Kim Reiner, Teresa Garland, Ming Ng, Natalie Rocha and Ellen Robinson

Ming Ng fought through a field of twenty-two, tough, female competitors, escaping Natalie Rocha in the second set of the true, double elimination final, to claim the first stop on the 2020 Gulf Coast Women’s Regional Billiards Tour.  
 
On January 4th, 2020, sponsors Cyclop Pool Balls, Poison by Predator Cues, APA of North Harris County, Alamo Billiards, Outsville Billiards, and the Tour’s newest sponsor, Team Straight Pool Eye, facilitated a successful event for the Gulf Coast Women’s Regional Billiards Tour, paying out $940 in prize money, for the one-day, $500 added, women’s 9-ball event. The tournament was held at the legendary Slick Willies Family Pool Hall, located at 5913 Westheimer, in Houston’s upscale, Galleria area. The Gulf Coast Tour would like to thank Slick Willies’ Director of Operations, David Kimmey, for signing on to another season of events for women pool players. “We are proud to be back at Slick Willies for a second year, and thank them for their continued support” said Kim Newsome, Gulf Coast Tour Founder and Director. Slick Willies will host four events in Houston, and one in San Antonio, during the 2020 season. The next event will be held at Diamond Sports Bar and Billiards in Port Arthur, Texas, on February 8th-9th. 
 
Ming “The Empress” Ng made her way to the winners’ side final four with wins over Brittany Kromer, 7-3, and Michelle Yim, 7-4, while Teresa “Princess of Pool” Garland defeated Sandra Melo, 7-2, and Kim Reiner, 7-5. Ellen Robinson bested newcomer, Louisiana Le, 7-6, and Verda Jones, 7-1, while Natalie Rocha ousted first-timer, Brenda Gunter, 7-1, Carmel Luttrell, 7-2, and Courtney Peters, 7-5. On the one-loss side, Sherry Hildebrand ended Sandra Melo, 5-3, but was eliminated in turn by Vada Selsor. Michelle Abernathy overcame Ginger Abadilla, 5-3, while Kromer handled Gunter, 5-2. Luttrell passed Matty Sword, 5-2, Stacy Berry dismissed Terri Resendez, 5-3, and Le denied Kim Woodworth, 5-1. Rounding out the final four on the one-loss side, Selsor defended against Hildebrand, but fell to Peters, 5-2, while Kromer took out Abernathy, 5-1, and Jones, 5-3. Berry sent home Luttrell, 5-2, but lost to Reiner, 5-4, while D’Andrea McQuirter derailed Le, 5-4, only to be taken out by Yim, 5-4. It was down to the final eight players, and the action was heating up on the east side. Vying for the hot seat, Rocha dealt Robinson her first blow, while Ng shut-out Garland, pitting two of the finest, Houston players, in a hot seat showdown. Rocha was determined to change the narrative, but Ng resisted, and forged ahead to win the hot seat, 7-4. On the west side, Peters plowed through Kromer, 5-1, but was stopped by Garland, 5-4, as Reiner finished off Abernathy, 5-4, but fell to Robinson, 5-3. Final four tournament action witnessed Robinson conquer Garland, 5-2, but failing to advance further, losing to Rocha, 5-2. Rocha earned a rematch with Ng, along with a shot at redemption, and the title. In the first set, Rocha came on strong, defeating the current Tour champion, 7-5. In overtime, Ng shifted gears, defeating Rocha, 5-2, to win the Gulf Coast Tour, 2020 Season Opener.
 
Gulf Coast welcomes all of its new members, and returning members, to the 2020 Tour! The Tour offers a number of member perks, including free, 15-minute pool clinics on tournament weekends, hosted by WPBA Exempt Professional, Kim Newsome, and renowned players, Ming Ng, and Kim Pierce. Clinics are aimed at helping women improve their overall game and mindset. For more information about Tour benefits, please visit www.GulfCoastWomensTour.com.
 
Board Members Ming Ng and D’Andrea McQuirter, along with Ellen Robinson and Teresa Garland, ran a seamless event, while Ginger Abadilla photographed the players in action. The Tour would like to thank these wonderful women for a job well done.
 
The next event is February 8th-9th, 2020 at Diamond Sports Bar and Billiards in Port Arthur, Texas.  This event is played on open bar tables. For more information, visit www.GulfCoastWomensTour.com. 

 

Williams comes from the loss side to down Ng in JO Ladies Tour season opener

(l to r): Ming Ng & Tara Williams

It is a reflection of a widely varied women’s tour field that Tara Williams, winner of the Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour season opener this past weekend (January 11-12), earned more in 2019, finishing in the money twice (4th in both the SBE Women’s Championship and the NAPT’s Desert Challenge) than the event’s runner-up, Ming Ng made last year, winning two events – the 46th Texas Open, Ladies division & a stop on the Gulf Coast Women’s Regional Tour – and finishing 4th at the 5th Texas 10-Ball Championships/Ladies. Williams and Ng advanced in the  JO Ladies Tour season opener to a winners’ side semifinal, where Williams was defeated. She won three on the loss side and double dipped Ng in the double eliminaton final to claim the event title. The $2,000-added event drew 43 entrants to Big Tyme Billiards in Spring, TX.
 
As Tara Williams faced Kim Sanders in one of the winners’ side semifinals, Ng squared off against Angie Payne in the other one. Sanders downed Williams 7-5 and was joined in the hot seat match by Ng, who’d defeated Payne 7-4. Ng claimed the hot seat 7-2.
 
On the loss side, Williams and Payne ran into competitors who’d been sent to the loss side by Ng and Williams in a winners’ side quarterfinal. Williams drew Jennifer Kraber, who, following her defeat at the hands of Ng 7-3, defeated Yvonne Asher 7-4 and survived a double hill battle versus Teresa Garland. Payne drew Michelle Cortez, who’d been defeated by Williams 7-4 and after picking up a forfeit win in the first money round (9/12), had defeated Terry Petrosino 7-1.
 
Williams downed Kraber 7-3, as Cortez completed her side of the quarterfinal re-match equation with a 7-5 win over Payne. Williams downed Cortez a second time, this time 7-2, to earn a second straight rematch; this time against Sanders in the semifinal.
 
Their meeting in one of the winners’ side semifinals had come within a game of double hill (7-5). Their meeting in the overall semifinal wasn’t as close. Williams eliminated Sanders 7-3 for a shot at Ng in the hot seat.
 
Williams’ three-match work on the loss side of the bracket had been consistent; giving up three or less racks in each of the three matches. She maintained that pace and downed Ng in the finals by giving up three in the opening set, but only two in the second set that gave her the event title.
 
A $100-added Best of the Rest tournament drew eight entrants. Sandra Melo took home the top prize, with Monica Anderson finishing as runner-up.
 
Tour representatives thanked Billy and Debbie Sharp and their Big Tyme Billiards staff for their hospitality, as well as title sponsor Jerry Olivier Cues, Roger Allen (for providing cue repair), and Art Politte with QXtender for attending. The next stop on the Jerry Olivier Ladies Tour, scheduled for the Leap Year weekend (February 29-March 1), will be hosted by Skinny Bob’s in Round Rock, TX.