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LaFleur wins her first-ever Tri-State Tour event

Allison LaFleur & Frank Scorsonelli

Allison LaFleur is currently the top-ranked female player on the Tri-State Tour, more as a result of consistent, persistent competition, than any record of multiple victories. As a D+ player, she’s competed in 18 events on the tour’s current season, which began last summer and will continue until this summer. On Sunday, March 11, she broke through to win her first Tri-State event, and you can tell from the accompanying photo that her smile is a lot more than the result of someone asking her to say “Cheese!” The $1,000-added event drew 31 entrants to a new room for the Tri-State – Black Diamond Billiards in Union, NJ.
LaFleur’s six opponents were evenly split between men and women. She opened with victories over Irene Kim and Suzzie Wong, before downing her first male opponent, Nick Quaglia. She faced her third female opponent, Ada Lio, in one of the winners’ side semifinals, as Ray Toro squared off against Mike Mele in the other one. LaFleur got into the hot seat match with a 6-2 victory over Lio, and faced Toro, who’d sent Mele to the loss side 7-3. LaFleur downed Toro 10-7 to sit in her first hot seat.
As LaFleur waited (no doubt somewhat anxiously for an opponent in her first-ever finals), Frank Scorsonelli was working on a seven-match, loss-side winning streak that would make him LaFleur’s opponent in the finals. Scorsonelli, defeated by Quaglia in the second round of winners’ side play, got by Anthony Palmisano, and Suzzie Wong on the loss side, before running into Quaglia a second time. He defeated Quaglia 7-2, and then, Joe Rubino, double hill, to pick up Lio. Mele drew Max Watanabe, who, after a defeat at the hands of Ray Toro, had defeated Raj Vannalla and Matt Klein, both 7-5, to reach him.
Mele and Watanabe battled to double hill before Mele finished the match and advanced to the quarterfinals. Scorsonelli downed Lio 6-4 to join him. Scorsonelli ended Mele’s short, loss-side trip 7-4 in those quarterfinals, and then, defeated Toro 8-5 in the semifinals.
La Fleur, however, was not to be denied. She defeated Scorsonelli 5-3 in the finals to capture her first Tri-State title.
Tour representatives thanked the ownership and staff at Black Diamond Billiards for their hospitality, as well as sponsors Ozone Billiards, Sterling-Gaming, Kamui Tips, Phil Capelle, BlueBook Publishing, Human Kinetics, Pool & Billiards, Professor Q Ball, Bender Cues, and DIGICUE OB. The next stop on the Tri-State Tour, scheduled for Sunday, March 18, will be hosted by Clifton Billiards in Clifton, NJ.

Nick Quaglia Takes Down Garden State Tour’s First Event

Max Watanabe and Nick Quaglia

Weather in New Jersey was supposed to be bad on Saturday Afternoon, the 17th. Eleven players showed up for this first event, in a new pool room as well. Black Diamond Billiards located in Union, New Jersey.
Players such as Max Watanabe, Teddy "One Peace" Lapadula, John (JACK) Egeln, David Fitzpatrick to play in this amateur A-D event.
The format was 9-Ball races to 6, alternate breaks, and rack your own. Double elimination. Finals were, one race to 9. Even though there were only 11 players, $100 was still added.
The Top 4 players received trophies as well as QuicSlicks from Billiard Engineering . The bracket was split for a A-B side & a C-D side. Nick Quaglia was placed on the A-B side as well as David Fitzpatrick and Teddy Lapadula.  Max Watanabe and Marcelo Adinolfi were the A & B class players. On the lower side C-D Class players. John Egeln, Ralph  Ramos Sr. & Ralph Ramos Jr, Kevin Serodio , Mark Lamberti.
Max & Marcelo was the first match to be called. A battle however Max won a 6 to 4.  David & Teddy battled it out to a 6 to 5 win for Teddy.
On the C-D side of the chart Mark Lamberti was coming through with 3 hill hill wins, then sent Kevin Serodio to the one lose side.
Max and Nick traded games back and forth. At hill-hill, the 7 & 9 were stuck in an awkward position. Max attempted to play a safe. Nick took advantage and advanced to play Mark.
Mark couldn't hold on and Nick won 6 to 1, sending Nick into the Finals. 
On the one lose side John Egeln was showing what an old timer can do. After losing a first round hill hill match to Kevin Serodio, John won 6-2 , 6-0 , and 6-1 to get his rematch.
John took an early 3 to 1 lead, but after hanging a couple 9-Balls he lost his momentum and Kevin took advantage and won 6 to 4. On the one loss A-B side, Marcelo took care of business beating David Fitzpatrick 6 to 5 and Teddy Lapadula 6 to 2 which set up a rematch with Max. These two traded shot for shot, before Max was able to come through for a 6 to 5 win. 
Kevin Serodio then had to play Max and Max got on a roll to steamroll Kevin 6 to 1. Max's next match was against Mark Lamberti and the winner would advance to play Nick in the Finals.This was a real David vs. Goliath match. Whatever Max would do, Mark found a way to answer, kicking and banking balls in. The match was really closer than indicated by the final score of 6-4.
The finals started slow. One race to 9, but after the players fought to a 3-3 tie Nick started to pick up steam. When Nick led 7-4, Max came back with 2 more racks making it 7-6. They then traded racks for an 8-7 score  In the last game Max misplayed a crucial safety on the 7 ball. Nick played a nice 3 ball run and clinched the win for the tours first event. The final 4 players cashed, received beautiful trophies and QuicSlicks. 
David Fitzpatrick is the tournament director of The Garden State Pool Tour and he thanked the players who came out for the tournament, Kneil Shah – owner of Black Diamond Billiards – for hosting the event and Billiards Engineering for their donations of the QuicSlicks.  The Garden State Tour's next event is March 24,2018 again at Black Diamond Billiards. That event will be a Ladies 9-Ball Open event.
More information about the tour can be found out on the tour's Facebook page. FACEBOOK: Garden State Pool Tour NJ.