Archive Page

International 9-Ball and 10-Ball Events Underway

Denis Grabe (Karl Kantrowitz)

Day one of the International 9-Ball Open and the International Big Foot 10-Ball Challenge are in the books with a handful of notable matches. 

In the 10-Ball event, Joshua Filler, Denis Grabe, Mika Immonen, Omar Al Shaheen and Roberto Gomez all advanced with first round wins. Gomez will have to focus on the 9-Ball division a bit more though, after a 10-7 first round 9-Ball loss to Josh Roberts. 

Jayson Shaw dropped his 10-Ball match to Grabe and was almost taken to hill-hill in his first round 9-Ball match with German Ralph Eckert. Warren Kiamco found himself in a similar situation, going to hill-hill before getting past Spencer Ladin. While Ladin came up just short of a big first round win, Junior players Shane Wolford and Nathan Childress both had comfortable wins with Wolford beating Matt Krah 10-3 and Childress defeating Raphael Dabreo 10-5.

International One Pocket Open runner-up Tony Chohan started off his 9-ball campaign on a negative note with a 10-5 loss to Donny Mills. Another player that made some noise in the One Pocket event was Devin Poteet. He was undefeated in the first stage of the One Pocket event, and finished in 5th place. His 9-Ball campaign started with a tight 10-8 win over Jeremy Sossei. 

Both the 9-Ball and 10-Ball events will be contested today with five more 10-Ball matches scheduled for the feature table in the Accu-Stats arena. Shane Van Boening will take on Lee Van Corteza, Jeffrey DeLuna will face Aloysius Yapp and Alex Pagulayan will play Fedor Gorst. Those matches will finish off the first round of the Big Foot Challenge. Two second round matches will be played later in the day today. 

The 9-Ball event will have a number of marquee matches today, including Tommy Kennedy vs Wiktor Zielinski, Wolford vs Thorsten Hohmann, Mario He vs Darren Appleton, Donny Mills vs Omar Al Shaheen, Kelly Fisher vs Fedor Gorst and Jonathan Pinegar vs Alex Pagulayan. 

Fans who purchase the PPV coverage from the event will not be limited to just the feature table. They will be able to choose any of the matches as they are being played. Get more information on the PPV at https://www.onsitepool.com/accustats/

Follow all of the action with Live Scoring and online brackets from both the 9-Ball and 10-Ball events. AzBilliards is working along with digitalpool.com to help put those brackets online. 

Tate, Childress and Hollingsworth earn entry to International Open at their last JIC event

Landon Hollingsworth, Joey Tate and Nathan Childress

Childress and Cutting win 18 & Under divisions in prelude to Championships

Unlike the young men and women in the 13 & Under divisions of the Junior International Championships, who competed in their final events this past weekend (Sept. 17-19), the young men and women of the JIC’s 18 & Under and ProAm divisions began the weekend knowing that there was more to come. The 18 & Under divisions would be competing in their Championship events on the weekend of Oct. 28-30 at the International Open in Norfolk, VA, while two of the ProAm competitors could look forward to actually competing in the International 9-Ball Open. As it turned out, three ProAm competitors earned entry into the event because Nathan Childress and Landon Hollingsworth tied for second place in the ProAm’s final rankings.

Won by Nathan Childress for the fifth time, the 18 & Under Boys division drew the largest group of competitors (39) to the seven events that were hosted by Wolf’s Den in Roanoke, VA over the long weekend. The ProAm division, won by Landon Hollingsworth (his first, which propelled him into the tie for second place in the rankings) was next in the attendance department with 32 competitors. The 18 & Under girls event drew 14 and saw Tatum Cutting win her third.

The eight events held in the ProAm division since January were designed to accommodate players who had grown out of the two age-specific divisions. The eight events were won by seven different competitors, all of whom, with the exception of Lukas Fracasso-Verner, had not grown out of their age groups. Joey Tate was the only player to win the event twice; in April and August. Fracasso-Verner took the January opener, followed by, in order, Gabriel Martinez, Tate’s first win, Nathan Childress, Ivo Linkin, Cash Keeton, Tate’s second win, and Hollingsworth. 

Hollingsworth, who, through the Pro Am’s first five events, finished, on average, in eighth place, was runner-up in the 6th stop, third in the 7th and won this one to tie Nathan Childress in the division’s rankings and earn entry into the International Open. And he had to work his way through some of the division’s toughest competitors. 

Hollingsworth opened his campaign against the competitor who’d finished third in the 18 & Under rankings, Riley Adkins. He sent Adkins to the loss side 7-4, and then downed Jayce Little 7-2 and Ivo Linkin 7-4, to arrive at a winners’ side semifinal against Gabriel Martinez. Joey Tate, in the meantime, had gotten by Payne McBride and Ben Kleinfelter, both 7-3 and sent Trenton White over 7-4 to draw Quintin Scott in the other winners’ side semifinal. 

Hollingsworth and Tate locked up in a double hill fight that did eventually send Hollingsworth to the hot seat match. He was joined by Tate, who’d defeated Scott 7-4. Tate claimed the hot seat 7-3 and waited for Hollingsworth to come back from the semifinals, which he did.

In those semifinals, Hollingsworth faced Lazaro Martinez, who’d won three on the loss side, including a double hill win over his brother, Gabriel and a 7-3 win over Riley Adkins in the quarterfinals. Hollingsworth ended Lazaro’s loss-side streak 7-3 and then, downed Tate in the finals 9-5 to claim the ProAm’s 8th title (Editor’s note: The Hollingsworth/Tate rivalry has been going on for a long time and has played a significant role in Hollingsworth’s development and growth as a player. The rivalry will figure prominently in a profile of Hollingsworth to appear in the October issue of our monthly magazine, Billiards Buzz).

Childress cements his 18 & Under rankings with 5th win, while Cutting wins her third to tie Mast

The eight 18 & Under Boys division events have been won by four competitors; one each by Joey Tate, Lazaro Martinez and in his only appearance on the series, Cameron Lawhorne, who won the opener. Nathan Childress has won the other five, and though he opened the series by finishing in fifth place, he’s either won or been the runner-up in every one of the seven events that have followed, which, as you’d expect, has left him way ahead of the pack in the division’s rankings. 

As something of an unintended dramatic gesture, Childress had to start out on the loss side by losing his opening match to Trenton White 7-5. He, then embarked on an eight-match, loss-side winning streak just to face hot seat occupant, Gabriel Martinez. 

White at least had the courtesy to provide evidence that his opening round win was not just an accident and advanced to a winners’ side semifinal against Landon Hollingsworth. Gabriel Martinez and Ivo Linkin squared off in the other one. Martinez got into the hot seat match 7-1 over Linkin. Hollingsworth survived a double hill fight versus White to enter his second hot seat match of the weekend. Martinez, though, sent him to the semifinals 7-5.

In those semifinals, Hollingsworth had the misfortune of running into Childress, who was only one step away from a spot in the finals and in his eight loss-side matches had been giving up an average of a little over two racks per match. Childress gave up two more in his battle with Hollingsworth and then let up a little on Martinez in the finals, allowing him three racks in their race to 9 to claim the 18 & Under title.

Casey Cork, Tatum Cutting and Skylar Hess

Tatum Cutting came into the 18 & Under Girls division event, one win behind the division’s rankings leader, Sofia Mast, who was ahead in division victories 3-2. Cutting came into the final event, behind in the division’s rankings by 4,500 points, so unless Mast had failed to show up, she was uncatchable in the division’s rankings. Mast did show up and finished in the tie for 5th/6th. Cutting went on to win the event, coming from the loss side, and in the process, made something of a definitive statement in her single match against Mast.

Mast lost her opening match to Courtney Hairfield 7-5, who followed her over when Cutting downed her in the second round by the same score. Cutting advanced to a winners’ side semifinal against Casey Cork, as Skylar Hess and Hayleigh Marion squared off in the other one. 

Hess got into the hot seat match with a 7-4 win over Marion. Cork joined her with a 7-3 win over Cutting. Cork claimed the hot seat 7-3 and waited on what turned out to be Cutting’s return.

On the loss side, Cutting ran right into Mast, who was in the midst of a brief, three-match loss-side winning streak. Marion drew Taylor Perkins, who’d won two in a row on the loss side to reach her. Perkins and Marion locked into a double hill that did, eventually, send Perkins to the quarterfinals. Cutting made her ‘statement’ by shutting Mast out, advancing to meet Perkins.

Cutting chalked up a second straight shutout, over Perkins in the quarterfinals and then downed Hess in the semifinals 7-4. 

There was not really a lot at stake for Casey Cork in the finals of the 18 & Under Girls division. The event would determine which eight would advance to the 18 & Under Girls Championship next month in Norfolk. Sitting in the hot seat, it was already Cork’s best finish among the six events she was able to attend, but she came into the event below the 8-player threshold for the Championship and though it’s unlikely she’d have been calculating this prior to the finals, she had zero chance of catching any of the opponents ahead of her and the best she could do would be runner-up, in which case she’d finish 9th in the rankings.

That’s exactly what happened, but not before Cork had first, downed Cutting in a winners’ side semifinal and then, in their finals rematch, put up a double hill fight versus one of the top two players in the division to record her best showing of the entire series. Cutting completed her third division victory of the series with the 9-8 win.

JIC Tour Director Ra Hanna thanked all of his sponsors for their help in making this event possible, Mike Littman with Littman Lights, Matt Suite at American Billiard Covering, Dynaspheres, Chris Wilson at The League Room, Kory & Trena Wolford from Wolfs Den Billiards and Mike from Michael’s Billiards.

Tate goes undefeated in Pro-Am and wins eight on the loss side to win 18 & Under Boys JIC

Joey Tate

Treyshawn Bia goes undefeated to capture 13 & Under Boys title

As the Junior International Championships head towards their 8th and final regular series event, scheduled for Sept. 24-26, at Wolf’s Den in Roanoke, VA, two boys, competing in two separate divisions are locked into something of an epic battle for the leadership of both divisions. At present, following the most recent stop on the JIC series, at Michael’s Billiards in Fairfield, OH over the past weekend (Aug. 27-29), Nathan Childress of Midlothian, VA leads the rankings in both the Pro-Am division (open to both genders and to players who may have ‘aged’ out of competing in the 18 & Under divisions) and the 18 & Under Boys division. Right behind him in both of the division rankings is Elm City, NC’s Joey Tate, who won both of those divisions in this past weekend’s (Aug. 27-29) stop in the JIC series at Michael’s Billiards in Fairfield, OH. Childress was runner-up in the 18 & Under division, which drew the weekend’s largest number of entrants (44) and finished in the tie for 5th in the Pro-Am division, which drew the second largest crowd of entrants (33).

Childress has won four of the seven 18 & Under Boys’ events and been runner-up in two others. Tate is a distant second in the 18 & Under rankings, having been the runner-up in three of Childress’ four victories and won only once at this past weekend’s event, in which it was Childress who was the runner-up. In the Pro-Am division, Childress has won only once, at the series’ 4th stop at Center Pocket in Laurel, MD.  He’s been runner-up once and placed third in January’s inaugural event of the series. Childress is way out in front in the 18 & Under rankings, but remains at the top of the Pro-Am division’s rankings, in part because Tate did not compete at one of the seven events. Childress finished in the tie for 13th place at that event, earning 2500 ranking points. He currently leads Joey Tate by 250 ranking points in that division. It’s unlikely that Tate will catch Childress in the 18 & Under Division at the next stop in the series, which will put a spotlight on the Pro-Am division, at which it could very likely hinge on how Childress and Tate finish in that event.

Tate’s most dramatic win of this past weekend came in the 44-entrant, 18 & Under division, which got underway first on Friday at Michael’s Billiards. He was awarded an opening round bye and then, in his first match, lost double hill to Cash Keeton. As he shifted to the loss side of the bracket for his eight-match, loss-side trip back to the finals, Childress and Ivo Linkin (in 5th place in the rankings of the 18 & Under and Pro-Am divisions) advanced through the field to face each other in the hot seat.

Childress got by Trent Rose and Riley Adkins before running into Cash Keeton, fresh off his victory over Tate. Childress downed Keeton and then, Declan Summers, to arrive at a winners’ side semifinal versus Dylan Waugh. Linkin opened his campaign with a bit of a scare, eking out a double hill win over Payne McBride, before giving up a total of only four racks in his next three matches, versus Quintin Scott (1), Jacob Schulte (1) and Jayce Little (2), to advance to his winners’ side semifinal against Landon Hollingsworth.

Childress downed Waugh 7-1, and in the hot seat match, faced Linkin, who just did down Hollingsworth, double hill. Childress sent Linkin to the semifinals (versus Tate) 7-2.

On the loss side, Tate’s eight-match trip back to the finals had a shaky start, characterized by two straight double hill battles, against Riley Adkins and Joshua Taylor. Until the finals, Tate would not give up more than three racks in any match that followed. Tate eliminated Treyshawn Bia, who would later become the winner of the 13 & Under Boys division, Ben Gonzales and Xavier Murray to draw Hollingsworth, coming over from the winners’ side semifinal. Waugh drew Trenton White, who’d recently shut out Jacye Little 7-0 and eliminated Cole Bryson 7-1.

Tate gave up only four racks over the next three matches that brought him to the finals. He downed Hollingsworth 7-1 and in the quarterfinals, facing Waugh (who’d defeated White 7-5), he didn’t give up a single rack. Ivo Linkin managed three racks against him in the semifinals.

Tate won his second 18 & Under Boys event of the JIC series with a 9-6 victory over Childress in the finals.

Tate needed only six wins to seal his undefeated run in the Pro-Am division

As with his loss-side run in the 18 & Under Division, Joey Tate’s undefeated run in the Pro-Am began with two double hill battles, which, also like his 18 & Under run, he won, against Payne McBride and Ivo Linkin. He followed up with a shutout over Zaiden Leary and a winners’ side semifinal win over Riley Adkins 7-1. Landon Hollingsworth, in the meantime, worked his way through the Pro-Am field to arrive at his winners’ side semifinal match and much (one would presume) to the relief of Tate, he met and defeated Nathan Childress 7-2. Tate chalked up his next-to-last victory of the event, claiming the hot seat over Hollingsworth 7-4.

On the loss side, Adkins drew Cash Keeton (who’d sent Tate to the loss side in the 18 & Under division and) who was in the midst of a five-match, loss-side winning streak that was about to end. He had recently eliminated Ben Gonzales 7-5 and Ivo Linkin 7-4. Childress picked up Zaiden Leary, who was trekking back to the finals and had followed his winners’ side quarterfinal loss to Tate with victories over Cameron McBride 7-4 and Jacob Kohl 7-1.

Leary (again, one would presume to the relief of Tate) eliminated Childress 7-4 and in the quarterfinals, faced Adkins, who’d defeated Keeton 7-2. Leary then punched his ticket to the finals with two straight 7-4 wins; over Adkins in the quarterfinals and Hollingsworth in the semifinals. Tate completed his undefeated run with a 9-5 win in the finals.

Treyshawn Bia, in 2nd appearance on JIC series, goes undefeated to win 13 & Under Boys

Entering this 7th event of the JIC series, Gallup, NM’s Treyshawn Bia had only competed in one previous event; the 4th, back in June in Texas. He’d finished 3rd behind Gabriel Martinez and Hank Leinen. This apparently did not curb his enthusiasm or confidence in his own abilities any, because he came out gunning. He went undefeated through a field of 18 entrants in the 13 & Under Boys division and went undefeated to claim the event title. 

It took him five matches to do it and he had to defeat the division’s #1 ranked player – D’Angelo “Jaws” Spain to finish the run. Like other competitors in the ‘older’ brackets, it began with a double hill fight. He won that opener versus Garret Summer, went on to send Jayce Little to the loss side and draw Fred Hill, Jr. in one of the winners’ side semifinals. Jayse Alton, in the meantime, drew Hayden Ernst in the other one.

Bia got into the hot seat match with a 7-2 win over Hill and was joined by Alton, who’d sent Ernst to the loss side 7-4. Bia downed Alton 7-3 to claim the hot seat.

On the loss side, Hill and Ernst ran right into their second straight loss. Ernst lost a double hill fight against Declan Sommers, while Hill was eliminated by “Jaws” Spain 7-4. “Jaws” went on to eliminate Sommers 7-4 in the quarterfinals and then, Jayse Alton 7-3 in the semifinals.

The finals against the division’s ranking leader and the competitor making only his second appearance on the event series came within a game of going double hill. Bia edged out in front to win it 9-7 and claim his first JIC title.

JIC Tour Director Ra Hanna thanked all of his sponsors for their help in making this event possible, Mike Littman with Littman Lights, Matt Suite at American Billiard Covering, Dynaspheres, Chris Wilson at The League Room, Kory & Trena Wolford from Wolfs Den Billiards and Mike from Michael’s Billiards.

New kid on the block, Cash Keeton, wins Pro Am event at Junior International Championships

Cash Keeton

Childress and Cutting win 18 & Under Boys & Girls event, respectively

Nathan Childress and Joey Tate did not get to renew their battle for supremacy in either the Junior National Championships’ Pro Am or 18 & Under Boys division this past weekend (July 16-18) because Joey Tate was unable to compete. Both, however, did retain their positions at the top of the Pro Am division (Childress #1, Tate #2), in spite of the fact that a literal “new kid on the block,” Cash Keeton entered and won his first and only event of these JIC, losing the hot seat to Landon Hollingsworth (#3 in Pro Am division), but returning from the semifinals to defeat him. The victory put Keeton in the 30th slot on the tour rankings. The Pro Am event drew 27 entrants to The League Room in Parkersburg, WV.

Childress did go undefeated in the 18 & Under Boys division to win his 4th straight title in the division. Ivo Linkin was runner-up in this event and moved up to the #5 spot in the division’s rankings. The 18 & Under Boys event drew 36 entrants (same location). In the 18 & Under Girls division, Tatum Cutting won her second title (she won the first in which she competed in March) and edged into third place in the division’s rankings behind Sofia Mast (also with two wins) and Kennedy Meyman (with one). April Gonzales was runner-up in the girls’ event which drew 13 entrants. Mast finished fourth this time out. Meyman finished 9th. 

Keeton’s path to victory in the Pro Am event began against the competitor who was runner-up in the 18 & Under Boys division, Ivo Linkin. Keeton advanced to down Tanner Elliott and Zaiden Leary to draw Kodi Allen in one of the winners’ side semifinals. Allen had sent Nathan Childress to the loss side in the opening round of play. Landon Hollingsworth, in the meantime, after being awarded an opening round bye, defeated Jayce Little and Riley Adkins to draw AJ Weaver in the other winners’ side semifinal. 

Keeton downed Allen 7-5 and in the hot seat match, faced Hollingsworth, who’d sent Weaver west 7-3. Hollingsworth might have been forgiven for thinking “piece of cake” when he gave up only a single rack to Keeton to claim the hot seat. The ‘cake’d come back fresh to challenge him in the finals.

On the loss side, Kodi Allen survived a double hill fight versus Payne McBride, only to be eliminated 7-4 in the quarterfinals by Zaiden Leary, who’d previously defeated Weaver 7-1. Keeton gave up only a single rack to Leary in the semifinals and then downed Hollingsworth in their finals rematch 9-6.

Childress and Cutting go undefeated to claim their respective Boys and Girls titles

The Boys 18 & Under division was the largest of the weekend’s events, drawing 36 entrants. Nathan Childress, after a bye, gave up only five racks in 18 games, versus Jayce Little (0), Dylan Waugh (4) and Eddie Vondereau (1), to arrive at his winners’ side semifinal match against Riley Adkins. Ivo Linkin, in the meantime, had to do some battling to get to the same match. He got by James Kuntz, D’Angelo “Jaws” Spain, Brent Worth and Ben Kleinfelter (aggregate score, including one double hill win, of 28-17) to meet his winners’ side semifinal opponent, Owen Chapple.

Childress marched right into the hot seat match with a shutout over Adkins (#2 to Childress’ #1 in the 18 & Under rankings). He was joined by Linkin, who continued his battles with a double hill win over Chapple. Childress claimed the hot seat 7-2 over Linkin.

On the loss side, Trenton White, who’d lost to Riley Adkins in a winners’ side quarterfinal, defeated Zaiden Leary, Eddie Vondreau and, fresh from the winners’ side, Owen Chapple. He defeated Kodi Allen 7-4 in the quarterfinals, but fell to Linkin 7-5 in the semifinals. Linkin fought Childress to double hill in the finals, but Childress had the last word to claim the 18 & Under Boys title.

Tatum Cutting won four straight matches to claim the 18 & Under Girls title. After a bye, she downed Casey Cork 7-4 to face the division’s top-ranked competitor, Sofia Mast, in the event’s winners’ side semifinal. After a bye, April Gonzales survived an opening round, double hill match versus Kennedy Meyman to arrive at her winners’ side semifinal match against Precilia Kinsley.

Gonzales got into the hot seat match with a 7-3 win over Kinsley. Cutting joined her after sending Mast to the loss side 7-5. Cutting took the first of two against Gonzales 7-2 to claim the hot seat,

On the loss side, Kinsley and Mast both survived double hill matches (versus Hayleigh Marion and Skylar Hess, respectively) to face each other in the quarterfinals. Kinsley advanced 7-5 over Mast, only to be eliminated, in another double hill match, by Gonzales in the semifinals. Cutting downed Gonzales a second time 9-7 in the finals to claim the 18 & Under Girls title. 

On the Wire Creative Media’s Ra Hanna awarded Eddie Vondereau (winner of the 13 & Under Boys event) the Brendan Crockett Sportsmanship Award, while Grayson Vaughn (3rd place in 13 & Under Boys event) the Jeanette Lee “Black Widow” Comeback Award for being down 1-6 in his opening match against 10-year old Hayden Ernst and coming back to beat him ‘on the hill.’ Hanna thanked Chris Wilson (owner of The League Room in Parkersburg, WV), Chris Reinhold (photography), the Wolfords (Kory and Treena, for their help), Mike Littman of Littman Lights, his (Hanna’s) streaming crew and Dee Adkins, for orchestrating a clinic for the girl competitors at this most recent event. Hanna once again gave a shout out to all of the families of the junior players, whose camaraderie has made these events “truly, one big traveling family.” 

The next stop on the JIC series of events, scheduled for August 27-20, will be hosted by Michael’s in Fairfield, OH. The final event for the 13 & Under Boys and Girls, scheduled for September 17-19, will be hosted by Wolf’s Den in Roanoke, VA. The finals for 18 & Under Boys and Girls, as well as the Pro Am division will coincide with the International Open in Norfolk, VA in October. 

Junior International Championship Player of the Month – Nathan Childress

Nathan Childress

The old adage is that every cloud has a silver lining, for our July Junior Player of the Month, that old adage is a good one. Nathan Childress has rode a family crisis of a house fire to a dominating pool game at the ripe old age of eighteen.

“Our house caught on fire when I was eight” said Childress. “And we moved to a new house that was within 10 minutes of Diamond Billiards”. That proximity to the pool room gave Childress the opportunity to take lessons from room owner Thomas Dorsey and he has never looked back.

On a visit to Diamond Billiards, Nathan and his older brother Noah saw Dorsey giving lessons to two youngsters, and decided they too wanted to learn how to play. “His brother was better than him at the time.” Dorsey recalled. “I focused on his brother. Nathan could barely concentrate on more than one thing. I kept having to bring him back to the table.“ he continued. Dorsey gives Childress credit for sticking to it though. “He showed up every week. When he started focusing, his brain switched so that he just wanted to play pool and get better.” he said.

It didn’t take long to discover that Childress had a natural ability to play the game. “He is naturally talented in pool. Some people, you show them something and they don’t get it. He gets it right away and applies it to his game. “

Before too long, Childress wanted to compete in Junior events, and the Super Billiards Expo offered many different junior divisions. “He was always interested in playing in any junior event, anywhere.” said Dorsey. “I don’t think he won a match in his first 12 & Under tournament, but he came back the next year and won the event. Then it was the 14 & Under division, and he won that too. He has been winning tournaments since he was 10.”

Nathan Childress

This tournament success has helped to forge a unique bond between Childress and his mother Michelle. “I started going to the tourneys with him, and they just became our thing. I think I have missed three tournaments in ten years. I don’t play the game, but I like watching high level tournaments.” said Michelle.

Those tournament trips eventually led to regional tours, and Childress has had the same level of success there. Action Pool Tour Director Tiger Baker commented “He has played in three events on our tour, and he has cashed in all three. He beat Chris Bruner, a defending champion, at his first event with us”. Childress also remembers that event. “I was a little under the radar back then. I really wanted to start taking the game serious. I ended up taking second and that really motivated me to keep going. “

Even with all of the success Childress has achieved at the table. He still looks at the game in the right light. “He is pretty level headed. I have instilled into him that he has to lose gracefully and he is not playing the opponent. He is playing the table. If his opponent gets the rolls today, he got them yesterday, so it all evens out.” said Mom. Baker commented on Childress’s winning attitude at the table. “If you have a son who wants to play pool, you want one with exactly this mentality. He doesn’t show any anger at the table even when things aren’t going right. He has been raised right and you can see it in his demeanor at the table“. JIC Tour Director Ra Hanna summed it up when he suggested Childress for the Player of the Month honor. “Nathan Childress is right now  the best player in the JIC. He checks all the boxes (attitude, demeanor and professionalism) and we are very proud to have him in our family!”

While Childress has one more year of high school in front of him. He hopes to build a career as a professional pool player. Mom is trying to make sure that he stays grounded. “I just ask him to have a back plan or maybe find a trade that travels so he can work while on the road.”. Childress seems to have taken that message to heart. “I would love to do real estate, so I can still focus on pool.” He said. Veterans of the game, who had watched Childress in action, think the sky is the limit. “I’ve been some incredible things from this kid and it’s going to get better and better. “ said Tiger Baker. Childress’s coach Dorsey agrees with that assessment. “I think for Nathan, it makes sense. No one puts in the time that Nathan does. He will shoot drills and look to match up against anyone, just to learn more and more. He definitely has the mindset for it. He is hungry and wants to do it.”

This article originally appeared in the July 2021 issue of the Billiards Buzz Online Publication.

Childress, Tate continue JIC battle for top spots in Pro Am and 18 & Under Boys divisions

Ivo Linkin, Nathan Childress and Ra Hanna

Linkin downs Childress twice to win Pro Am event on tour’s 5th stop in Texas

Whatever else the Junior International Championships (JIC) have done for the future of junior competition in pool going forward (and it appears as though it could be significant), they have managed to elevate and draw attention to the level of excitement possible when you organize a tour that qualifies the best a tour has to offer in a tour finale event. The competition among the individual players is evident to all, player and fans alike. As of this past weekend, June 25-27, the JIC, held under the auspices of On the Wire Creative Media, has held five events, with three to go, not including the JIC finale, scheduled to coincide in time and space with Pat Fleming’s International Open in Norfolk, VA in October. 

This report will cover two of the five events, the Open Pro and the 18 & Under Boys Division of the JIC. The 18 & Under Girls Division and both of the 13 & Under Divisions are covered in a separate report, available elsewhere in our News pages.

Five different junior players have won the JIC’s Pro Am multi-gender, age-open event, beginning with Lukas Fracasso-Verner in January, who was followed by Gabriel Martinez (March), Joey Tate (April), Nathan Childress (May) and just this past weekend, in the event that drew 27 entrants to Stixx & Stones in Lewisville, TX, Ivo Linkin. The overall leader in the Pro Am event rankings at this point is Tate, who, in addition to his win in April, was second in March and third this past weekend. Childress is right behind him, with his win and a second and third place finish, as well. He is slightly behind Tate because in the two events in which he and Tate did not finish among the top three, he didn’t do quite as well as Tate; 13th and 4th, as opposed to Tate’s 7th and 4th. Trenton White is currently third in the rankings, with a runner-up finish in the fourth event, while Landon Hollingsworth is fourth. Ivo Linkin, who’s currently in fifth place, started slow in this event, finishing in the tie for 17th three times before finishing fifth in the fourth event and going undefeated to chalk up the win in this most recent one, while downing 2nd-place-in-rankings Childress twice.

Victories over Nathan Nunes, Riley Adkins and Cameron Cummings put Linkin in a winners’ side semifinal match against Spencer Ladin. Childress, in the meantime, had sent Zaiden Leary and, significantly, Joey Tate to the loss side to arrive at a winners’ side semifinal against 13-year-old Gabriel Martinez. Linkin leapfrogged into the hot seat match when Ladin forfeited. Childress joined him after chalking up a double hill win over Martinez. Linkin claimed the hot seat 7-3.

On the loss side, Ladin, returning to the competition, drew Joey Tate, who, following his defeat at the hands of Childress in a winners’ side quarterfinal, defeated Riley Adkins 7-1 and April Larson 7-4. Martinez drew Landon Hollingsworth, who’d been defeated by Spencer Ladin in a winners’ side quarterfinal and to reach Gabriel Martinez, had defeated Gabriel’s brother, 14-year-old Lazaro Martinez, double hill and Zaiden Leary 7-5.

Gabriel Martinez downed Hollingsworth 7-3 and in the quarterfinals, faced Tate, who’d survived a double hill fight versus Ladin. Tate then eliminated Gabriel Martinez 7-4 in those quarterfinals, only to have his brief, loss-side run stopped by his Pro Am arch-rival, Nathan Childress 7-5 in the semifinals. Childress and Linkin locked up in a double hill, single race-to-9 final match, won eventually by Linkin 9-8.

Nathan Childress

In the 18 & Under Boys competition, with many of the same players (more of them; 32, in all), Childress faced Tate twice and though he lost the first match, relinquishing the hot seat to Tate, he returned from the semifinals to win the race-to-9 final match.

Childress’ path to the winners’ circle went through Dylan Waugh, Treyshawn Bia and Trenton White, to arrive at a winners’ side semifinal versus Lazaro Martinez. Tate got by Riley Adkins, Cash Lance and Kodi Allen to arrive at his winners’ side semifinal versus Lazaro’s brother, Gabriel. 

Tate downed Gabriel Martinez 7-2, as Childress was busy sending his brother, Lazaro, to the loss side 7-4. As befitting the rivalry that’s ongoing with these two, Tate and Childress battled to double hill for possession of the hot seat. Tate claimed it.

On the loss side, the Martinez brothers were poised for a matchup in the quarterfinals. Gabriel (13) drew the Pro Am winner, Ivo Linkin, who’d been shut out by Trenton White in the opening round of this event and went on a five-match, loss-side winning streak that had eliminated Landon Hollingsworth in a double hill match, Dylan Waugh by shutout, Ben Kleinfelter 7-3 and in a sweet revenge match, survived a double hill battle on a rematch versus Trenton White. Brother Lazaro (14) picked up Riley Adkins, who’d lost his opening match to Joey Tate and mounted a five-match winning streak, as well. He got by Zaiden Leary, Hunter Leinen, Carlos Jinez, Brent Worth and Kodi Allen to meet up with Lazaro Martinez.

Lazaro downed Adkins 7-5, as Gabriel was busy eliminating Linkin 7-1. The younger brother, Gabriel won the siblings matchup 7-4, only to have his loss-side streak terminated by Childress 7-4 in the semifinals. Childress ‘cashed’ his revenge check in the finals, downing Tate 9-7 to claim the 18 & under Boys title at this event.

On the Wire Creative Media’s Ra Hanna awarded Precilia Kinsley the event’s regular Sportperson Award, while Joey Tate picked up the Jeanette Lee Comeback Award. He also thanked Anju and John Bergman and their Stixx & Stones staff for their hospitality, as well as his assistants, Chris Reinhold (handling photography), the Wolfords (Kory and Treena, for their help), Chris Wilson (owner of The League Room in Parkersburg, WV), Mike Littman of Littman Lights and Hanna’s streaming crew. Hanna once again gave a shout out to all of the families of the junior players, whose camaraderie has made these events “truly, one big traveling family.” 

The next stop on the JIC series of events, scheduled for July 16-18, will be hosted by The League Room in Parkersburg, WV. 

Childress and Tate are at the top of “18 & Under Boys” and “ProAm” rankings on JIC

Trena Wolford, Joey Tate, Ra Hanna, Nathan Childress and Kory Wolford

Tate and Heyman at the top of “18 & Under Girls; Mast and Tate lead “13 & Under” groups

On the Wire Creative Media’s series of Junior International Championships crossed its midway point this past weekend (May 28-30) at the 4th event in the series, hosted by Center Pocket Billiards in Bowie, MD. Technically, it did so somewhere in the middle of this event, because although there are eight total events scheduled, the last will be the tour finale, scheduled to coincide in time (more or less) and space (Norfolk,VA) with Pat Fleming’s US International 9-Ball Open, scheduled to take place between Oct. 23-31.

The rivalries in the different age groups are becoming clearer now, as the junior competitors, all 92 of them, at this event, with a lot of categorical/division crossover, have begun facing each other on a more or less regular basis. Through four events, Nathan Childress and Joey Tate are battling it out for the top-ranking spot in both the “18 & Under Boys” division, as well as the  ProAm division. Childress has gone back-to-back in the “18 & Under Boys” event, with Joey Tate as runner-up both times. Tate, who’s younger than Childress by three years (18-15), has the upper hand in the ProAm rankings, having won the event back in April and finishing as runner-up before that (March). Childress, who won this most recent Pro Am, finished 3rd back in January, was 13th in March and 4th in April.

Talking to On the Wire Creative Media’s Ra Hanna, one would think that these five-division tournaments being run simultaneously for most of this year are as simple as opening a given venue’s doors, pointing children at tables and telling them to play. It’s not, but you wouldn’t know it from Hanna, who’s professional demeanor and unflagging enthusiasm for the entire project never seems to diminish. Nor does his awareness that he isn’t doing it alone.

“Truthfully,” he said, reflecting on the midway point of the series of tournaments, “there are a lot of supportive parents. We’ve gotten positive feedback and a lot of help.”

“This, to me, is always where we were headed,” he added. “It took a while for me to do it the way I wanted to do it.”

Among the surprises he has encountered, he has discovered that a part of the original plan had to be scrapped to accommodate the junior players themselves.

“When we first started,” he said, “the plan was to have separate (by age) brackets, so that you wouldn’t have kids flying all over the country to go two and out, but the younger kids wanted to play the older kids.”

“I had to open it up,” he added, “and as it turned out, the older players mentored the younger ones.”

In the most heavily-attended event of the weekend, the “18 & Under Boys” division, which drew 32 entrants, the marquee matchup between Nathan Childress and Joey Tate happened twice. Childress worked his way through Garrett Vaughan, Dylan Waugh and Hunter Frazier to arrive at a winners’ side semifinal against Landon Hollingsworth. Tate, in the meantime, had sent Konnor McFayden, Adrian Prasad, and Riley Adkins to the loss side and faced Ivo Linkin in the other winners’ side semifinal. 

Tate downed Linkin 7-1. Childress joined him in the battle for the hot seat, after engaging in a successful double hill fight against Hollingsworth. Tate claimed the hot seat 7-5 and waited for Childress to get back from the semifinals, which he did (downing Linkin 7-3). The wait wasn’t long, but the extra match was apparently to Childress’ benefit, as he returned to defeat Tate in the finals 9-4.

In the next most heavily-attended event, the Pro Am, which drew 26 mixed-gender-and-age entrants, Childress went undefeated to claim the title. He and Tate met in a winners’ side semifinal in this one. Childress had gotten by Jacob Kohl, Ben Kleinfelter and Payne McBride to draw Tate. Trenton White in the meantime, had been awarded an opening round bye and then defeated Ivo Linkin and Landon Hollingsworth to face Lukas Fracasso-Verner in the other winners’ side semifinal.

Childress sent Tate to the loss side from which he would not return 7-2. White downed Fracasso-Verner 7-5. Childress took the first of his two matches against White 7-2 and claimed the hot seat. On the loss side, Fracasso-Verner and Tate eliminated Linkin and Hollingsworth, respectively, before Fracasso-Verner ended Tate’s Pro Am run 7-3 in the quarterfinals. White defeated Fracasso-Verner a second time in the semifinals 7-5 and then, fell a second time to Childress, who claimed the event title 9-5 in the finals.

The older girls and the younger divisions do battle 

There was a bit of a shakeup in the rankings of the top four young women in the “18 & Under Girls” event, which drew 13 entrants. Coming into the weekend, Kennedy Meyman was leading the pack of 18 that had competed, so far. She’d won the first event and placed third in April. Bethany Tate (14) was second, having finished as the runner-up in the first two events. Sofia Mast (12) was third, having finished third in the second event. Skylar Hess (12) rounded out the top four in the rankings, having not been among the top three finishers in any of the first three events. When the recent event was over, Tate, Meyman and Mast were in a tie for the top spot, with Hess, who finished as runner-up, maintaining her 4th place position.

Trena Wolford, Sofia Mast, Ra Hanna, Skylar Hess and Kory Wolford

Mast went undefeated to win the event and had to defeat Hess twice; hot seat and finals. She’d defeated Bethany Tate’s younger sister, Noelle (11) and in a winners’ side semifinal, Courtney Hairfield, whom she defeated 7-3 to get into the hot seat match. Hess had downed Precilia Kinsley and Carley Tomaszewski and in the other winners’ side semifinal, Kennedy Meyman 7-5 to join Mast in the struggle for the hot seat.

Mast won the first of their two 7-3 to claim it. Hess moved to the semifinals where she ran into Bethany Tate, who, in a way, had exacted revenge on behalf of her sister, when she faced Meyman in the quarterfinals. Meyman had just defeated Noelle Tate. Bethany eliminated Meyman 7-4 in those quarterfinals, but was then eliminated herself, by Hess, in a double hill semifinal fight. The final fight was a double hill affair, as well, with Mast winning it 9-8 to claim the “18 & Under Girls” title.

The finish of the 8-entrant, “13 & Under Girls” event, looked a lot like the finish in the “18 and Under” division. Not exactly, though. Mast and Hess were in the finals, but the result was reversed, with Hess claiming the title. Bethany Tate finished in 3rd place for the second time.

The final rankings in the two female groups are very much alike, as well; Bethany Tate, Kennedy Meyman, Sofia Mast and Skylar Hess leading the way among the older young women. Mast, Tate, Hess and Noelle Tate leading the younger crowd in current rankings.

Hess and Mast split the two matches that they played, with Hess winning the second one in the finals. After Mast had shut out Ashley Prasad in a winners’ side semifinal and Hess had sent Franki Spain to the loss side 7-5, Mast downed Hess 7-4 to claim the hot seat. On the loss side, the Tate sisters met in the quarterfinals, once Bethany had eliminated Franki Spain (8) and Noelle had done likewise to Ashley Prasad, both 7-2. The elder Tate, Bethany, downed her younger sister Noelle 7-3 and then, engaged in a double hill, semifinal fight for a shot at Mast in the finals.  Hess won it, though, and then, defeated Mast 9-6 to claim the “13 & Under Girls” title.

Konnor McFayden, Adrian Prasad and Jayce Little

Adrian Prasad retained his top spot in the “13 & Under Boys” division by winning this division for the second straight and third, overall time. He had to come from the loss side to do it. He’d been sent over in a winners’ side semifinal, double hill, by Konnor McFayden, who went on to  defeat Jayce Little 7-4 to claim the hot seat. Prasad moved over and in three matches, gave up only four racks; two to D’Angelo “Jaws” Spain, and one each to Grayson Vaughan in the quarterfinals and Jayce Little in the semifinals. Prasad claimed the title by downing McFadden in the finals 9-4. This was only McFadden’s second appearance in the championship series, where in the opening event in March, he’d finished in 4th place. That put him in 4th place in the rankings, as well. In his absence, over the next two events, his place among his peers slipped. As this event’s runner-up, he moved up to #7 in the rankings.

Ra Hanna noted that Landon Hollingsworth had won the event’s Sportsperson Award, while Timothy Cossey won the Jeanette Lee Comeback Award. Hanna thanked the ownership and staff at Center Pocket Billiards for their hospitality, as well as his assistants Chris Robinson (handling photography) and the Wolfords, Corey and Treena, for their help. In addition to thanking Chris Wilson, owner of the League Room in Parkersburg, WV and Mike Littman of Littman Lights (“there from the beginning,” said Hanna.), he gave a shout out to all the families of the junior players, whose camaraderie has made these events, “truly, one big travelling family.”

The series of events, Hanna noted, has exceeded his expectations.

“Truthfully,” he said, “I knew we could get here, I just didn’t know it would be so fast.”

“If it weren’t for COVID, it would have been easy to get 128 (juniors) into these events,” he added. “We’re already outgrowing the spots we’re at.”

Stop #5 on the Junior International Championships (JIC), scheduled for the weekend of June 25-27, will be hosted by Stixx and Stones in Lewisville, TX. The complete schedule of events is available on the JIC Facebook page or in our calendar here at AZBilliards; link to the Tours/Events tab and then find “Junior International Championship.” 

Wending his way south, Korsiak goes undefeated at MD State 9-Ball Championships

Loye Bolyard, Nathan Childress, Joey Korsiak and Rick Scarlato

Though known to travel wherever necessary to compete, Joey Korsiak, whose residence is listed as Ronkonkoma, NY (about 50 miles east of Manhattan on Long Island) is known primarily for haunting pool tables in the Northeast corridor. In what was his best year at the tables (2005), when he cracked the top 100 on our AZB Money Leaderboard, five of the 10 events in which he cashed that year were on the NY-based Joss Tour and two others were in Pennsylvania (SBE Players Championship; 5th) and Rhode Island (16th Ocean State 9-Ball Championship; 17th). The other three were Derby City’s 9-Ball Division (Louisville, KY; 38th), the BCA Open (Las Vegas; 13th) and the US Open 9-Ball Championships (Virginia Beach, VA; 33rd). 

He began his 2021 campaign with a single event in Connecticut in February and then has embarked on a southern journey, which took him to Maryland earlier this month (May 1-2), where he competed at the Dynaspheres Cup 10-Ball Championships and finished 3rd behind Van Boening and Raphael Dabreo. Then, onward, south, to Gastonia, NC (about 30 miles west of Charlotte), where he competed in the 1st Annual Ron Park Memorial Tournament, won by Jesus Atencio, in which he finished in the tie for 9th. This past weekend (May 15-16), he headed back north to Maryland, where he went undefeated to chalk up his first victory of the year at the 3rd Annual Maryland State 9-Ball Championships. The event, which would have been the ‘4th Annual,’ but did not occur during the year-that-wasn’t, was held under the auspices of On the Hill Productions and drew 90 entrants to Champion Billiards in Frederick, MD.

Along the way, Korsiak defeated the event’s 2019 champion, Brandon Shuff, and later, much later, in the finals, had to contend with one of the country’s hot ‘young guns,’ two-time Billiard Education Foundation champion, Nathan Childress (‘15/’16, 14 & under boys). As might have been expected, these MD State championships were packed with some of the top competitors in the Mid-Atlantic region, including, though not limited to Shuff, Shaun Wilkie, Paul Oh, Steve Fleming, Brett Stottlemeyer, Matt Krah and the Mastermaker brothers, Danny and Joey. We’d be remiss if we didn’t include Loye Bolyard and Rick Scarlato, Jr. from On the Hill Productions in that crowd (Done!).

Korsiak’s path went through Harshit Kedia, Dylan Spohr, and Robert Calton before he ran into the defending champion, Brandon Shuff. Shuff chalked up just one less rack against him than all three of his previous opponents combined (6-5), but Korsiak prevailed and advanced to a winners’ side semifinal against Mike Saleh. Jose Mendez, in the meantime, who’d defeated Daniel Sharlow, James Ward, and Danny Mastermaker, drew Shaun Wilkie in a winners’ side quarterfinal. A 7-4 win set Mendez up to meet Nathan Childress in the other winners’ side semifinal.

Korsiak got into the hot seat match on the heels of a 7-2 victory over Saleh and was joined by Mendez, who’d sent Childress to the loss side 7-5. The hot seat match was Mendez’ second double hill challenge and Korsiak’s first. Korsiak won it and sat in the hot seat, awaiting what turned out to be the return of Childress.

On the loss side, Saleh picked up Jason Kochenour, who was working on a six-match, loss-side winning streak that had recently eliminated Jimmy Acosta 7-3 and narrowly, the aforementioned Rick Scarlato, Jr. Childress drew Danny Mastermaker, who’d defeated Christopher Funk 7-5 and then downed another, ‘young gun,’ more recently out of his teens than Childress, Lukas Fracasso-Verner 7-3.

Saleh and Kochenour locked up in a double hill battle that eventually sent Saleh to the quarterfinals. Childress and Mastermaker almost had themselves a double hill match, but Childress pulled out ahead at the end and won it by two 7-5. 

Childress downed Saleh 7-4 to earn his rematch against Mendez in what turned out to be a double hill semifinal. Childress closed it out for a shot at Korsiak in the hot seat. Korsiak shut Childress down early and claimed the event title with a 7-2 win in those finals.

On the Hill Productions, in the persons of Rick Scarlato, Jr. and Loye Bolyard thanked the ownership and staff at Champion Billiards, as well as sponsors AlleyKat Cue Sports, AZBilliards, Aramith Balls, Lucid Ballsports (Predator Arena Light), Mezz Cues, Turtle Racks, Simonis Cloth, TAP Chesapeake Bay Region and Safe Harbor Investments. The next event on the On the Hill Productions’ schedule will be the 2021 9-Ball Summer Slam, to be held on the weekend of June 12-13 and hosted by Brews & Cues on the Boulevard in Glen Burnie, MD.

‘Young guns,’ Childress and Wolford go undefeated to win MD State Scotch Doubles title

Loye Bolyard, Dewayne Laub, Dylan Spohr, Nathan Childress,Shane Wolford and Rick Scarlatto

The ‘old folks’ didn’t take it lying down, but they did end up in the dust as two youngsters, Nathan Childress and Shane Wolford went undefeated through a field of 29 two-person teams at On the Hill Productions’ Maryland State Scotch Doubles Championships this past weekend (Oct. 17-18).

Wolford is working at making 2020 his best earnings year of the four that he’s been tracked in our database. He’s got a ways to go to match his 2019 earnings, which were the best, thus far. Childress, the two-time Billiards Education Foundation’s Junior Champion (14 and under; 2015 & 2016) and winner of On the Hill Productions’ 9-Ball Fall Shootout this past September, is working on what is already his best earnings year in our database, because it’s the first and only year recorded, thus far. 

On average, the older competitors scored just shy of five points per match (4.8) against Wolford and Childress, so it was no clear cut walk in the park, but they persisted and downed Dewayne Laub and Dylan Spohr twice to claim the title. The event drew its 29 teams to Brews & Cues on the Boulevard in Glen Burnie, MD.

Wolford/Childress were awarded an opening round bye and then got by Mick Barton/Fred Crislip and Justin Mast/Shaun Wilkie to arrive at a winners’ side semifinal match against Rob Cord/Joe Tomkowski. Laub/Spohr sent Johnny Blume/Bobby Baldwin, Loye Bolyard/Joey Scarlato and Glenn Loveland/Robert Palucho to the loss side to arrive at their winners’ side semifinal matchup against Rick Scarlatto, Jr./Brett Stottlemyer.

Cord/Tomkowski were the only team to force the youngsters to play a deciding 13th game in a match. For all the good it did them. They survived the double hill challenge and advanced to the hot seat match. Laub/Spohr joined them after sending Scarlatto, Jr./Stottlemyer to the loss side 7-4. Childress/Wolford claimed the hot seat 7-4 and waited for Laub/Spohr to return.

On the loss side, Cord/Tomkowski drew the Ryans, Joey and Dave, who’d been sent to the loss side by Scarlatto, Jr./Stottlemyer in the third round and then survived two straight double hill battles versus first, Bobby Ambrose/Tony Long and then, Loveland/Palucho. Scarlatto, Jr./Stottlemyer picked up Brandon Shuff/Tony Manning, who’d been another winners’ side, third round victim, to Cord/Tomkowski.

Scarlatto, Jr./Stottlemyer did their part to secure a quarterfinal rematch against Cord/Tomkowski by downing Shuff/Manning 7-3. The Ryans, however, spoiled the reunion by eliminating Cord/Tomkowski 7-4. Scarlatto, Jr./Stottlemyer ended the Ryans’ brief loss-side presence 7-5 in those quarterfinals.

The Ryans and Laub/Spohr chalked up a double hill fight for a shot at the ‘young guns’ sitting in the hot seat waiting for them. Laub/Spohr won the battle and then got one game closer to Childress/Wolford than they had in the hot seat match. Childress/Wolford closed it out at 7-5 to claim the event title.

Event directors Rick Scarlato, Jr. and Loye Bolyard thanked the ownership and staff at Brews & Cues on the Boulevard for their hospitality. The next On the Hill Productions event, scheduled for the weekend of Nov. 28-29, will be the Maryland State Bar Table 10-Ball Championships, which will also be hosted by Brews & Cues on the Boulevard.

Childress goes undefeated to win On the Hill Production’s 9-Ball Fall Shootout

Loye Bolyard, Nathan Childress, Raphael DaBreo and Rick Scarlato

In an event that drew a few refugees from the dormant Tri-State New York area pool scene, as well as a few from the VA-based Action Pool Tour, two-time Billiards Education Foundation Junior National Champion Nathan Childress (2015Rick Scarlato Jr/2016; 14 & under), himself a competitor on the Action Pool Tour, went undefeated to win On the Hill Production’s 9-Ball Fall Shootout this past weekend (Sept. 12-13). It was, according to our records, the young man’s first major win, following a 2nd place finish on the Action Pool Tour’s season opener in January and a 7th place finish in the VA State 10-Ball Championships in February.  The event drew 71 entrants to Brews and Cues on the Boulevard in Glen Burnie, MD.

Childress went through eight opponents to include meeting and defeating one of those Tri-State New York players, Raphael DaBreo in the finals. DaBreo had won five on the loss side for the right to meet him. Childress opened with a victory over Robert Vannatta and went on to defeat Jeff Ball and John Hergett, all by an aggregate score of 21-3. Then, he ran into Brandon Shuff who battled him to double hill before giving way. Childress moved on to down Eric Heiland and face Jimmy Varias in a winners’ side semifinal.

Nathan Childress

Shaun Wilkie, who’d gotten by Johnny Blume, Dwayne Laub, Dylan Spohr and Justin Mast, ran into a  double hill challenge from Thomas Haas in a winners’ side quarterfinal match. He survived that challenge to face Joseph Wright in his winners’ side semifinal.

Childress shut Varias out and in the hot seat match, faced an ‘out of the frying pan into the fire’ opponent in Wilkie, who’d sent Wright to the loss side 7-4. Childress sent Wilkie to the loss side 7-2 and waited in the hot seat for what turned out to be the return of Raphael DaBreo.

On the loss side, DaBreo, who’d been sent west by Joseph Wright in the 5th round had defeated Rick Scarlato, Jr. 7-2, and Thomas Haas 7-5 to draw Varias. Wright picked up Tommy Zippler who was working on a modest three-match, loss-side winning streak that had included victories over Eric Heiland 7-4 and Bryan Jones 7-3.

Raphael DaBreo

DaBreo advanced to the quarterfinals with a 7-1 victory over Varias. Zippler extended his loss-side winning streak by one with a 7-2 win over Wright that advanced him to the quarterfinals, as well. DaBreo ended Zippler’s streak with a 7-5 victory in those quarterfinals and then got a shot at Childress in the hot seat with a 7-4 victory over Wilkie in the semifinals.

Childress completed his undefeated run with a 7-3 victory over DaBreo to claim his first major event title.

Tour directors Loye Bolyard and Rick Scarlato Jr thanked the ownership and staff at Brews & Cues, as well as sponsors Aramith Balls, Lucid Ballsports (Predator Arena Light), Mezz Cues, Turtle Racks, Simonis Cloth, TAP Chesapeake Bay Region and AZBilliards.