Archive Page

Shuff goes two out of three versus Futrell to win Action Pool Tour

Brandon Shuff (File photo courtesy of Jeff Smith)

Brandon Shuff and Chris Futrell faced each other three times in the Action Pool Tour stop on the weekend of June 9-10, and battled to double hill in all three matches. Shuff took two out of the three, including the second set of a true double elimination final to capture the event title. The event drew 58 entrants to Q-Master Billiards in Virginia Beach, VA.

The recipient of one of the six, first-round byes, Shuff gave up only four racks in his first two rounds of play, one against Daniel Choi and three versus Brian Deska, before running into Futrell the first time, among the final eight winners. Futrell gave up only five racks over three matches to get to that point, shutting out both Jackie Duggan and Anne Reynolds, before giving up the five in a match versus Dwight Cherry. In their first of three, Shuff advanced to the winners’ side final four to face Danny Mastermaker, while Futrell moved to the loss side and began a five-match winning streak back to the finals. In the other winners’ side semifinal, Chad Pike squared off against Rafael Reyes.

Shuff advanced to the hot seat match 8-6 over Mastermaker, and was joined by Reyes, who’d sent Pike west 8-2. Shuff sent Reyes to the semifinals 8-2, and waited in the hot seat for the return of Futrell.

Futrell moved to the loss side and immediately resumed his table domination, giving up only three racks in his first two matches, one against R.J Carmona and two versus Cary Dunn, which set him up to take on Pike. Mastermaker picked up Bill Duggan, who’d shut out Jesse Figueroa and battled Deska to double hill. Futrell and Mastermaker advanced to the quarterfinals with identical 6-2 victories over Pike and Duggan.

Futrell then chalked up two more 6-2 scores, over Mastermaker in the quarterfinals and Reyes in the semifinals, for a second shot at Shuff. In their second of two, it was Futrell prevailing in the opening set of a true double elimination final. In a reduced race to 6, Shuff came back to win the second set and secure the event title. In addition to Shuff’s $800, first-place prize, the victory gave him a free entry to October’s US Open 9-Ball Championships, valued at $500. The victory also kept him in the number one spot on the Action Pool Tour’s rankings.

In a concurrently-run Second Chance Tournament on Sunday, Tuan Chau went undefeated through a field of 16 entrants. Chau’s opening and closing matches were double hill battles, while in his three middle matches, he gave up only a single rack; to Nil Lim, in the hot seat match. Chau’s opponent in the finals, Paul Helms, had been sent west by Lim in the second round of play, and won five straight, including a 4-2 revenge match against Lim in the semifinals. Chau prevailed in the double hill finals to take the top, Second Chance prize.

Fuller comes from the loss side to win Action Pool Tour for his son

To attend the February 11-12 stop on the Action Pool Tour, Mike Fuller had to miss his son Christian’s birthday, so when he came back from the loss-side to challenge and defeat hot seat occupant, R.J. Carmona, to take the event title, he wanted it known that this one was for Christian – Happy Birthday!! Odds-on favorites to win this event might have included Mike Davis and Brian Deska, but both were eliminated in the opening day of the event, which drew 60 entrants to QMaster Billiards in Virginia Beach, VA.

Fuller was among the winners’ side final four, but Eric Moore sent him west 8-5, as Carmona was sending Nil Lim over 8-3. Carmona and Moore then battled to double hill, before Carmona prevailed to sit in the hot seat, awaiting the return of the in absentia birthday boy.

First up for Fuller on the loss side was Chris Futrell, who’d defeated Jimmy Bird double hill and Larry Kressell 6-3 to reach him. Lim drew Paul Helms, who’d shut out Jerry Fitchett and Junior Conway 6-4 (earlier, Conway had eliminated Mike Davis). Fuller then dominated in a 6-1 victory over Futrell, as Lim was busy surviving a double hill battle versus Helms.

Fuller ended Lim’s day with a 6-2 victory in the quarterfinals and then downed Moore 6-3 in the semifinals. He took the opening set of the true double elimination finals 8-6, and to complete his birthday gift to his son won the second set 6-3. In addition to his $900, first place prize, some of which, presumably, would go towards cake and candles, the victory earned Fuller a $500, free entry to the US Open.

In a second chance tournament on Sunday that drew 21 entrants, Jerry Fitchett survived a double hill opening round battle against Cheryl Sporleder (who earned $75 as the top female finisher in the main event). Fitchett then went on to give up only seven racks the rest of the way (five matches) to finish undefeated. He gained the hot seat with a 5-3 victory over Sean Sporleder, who moved west to face Bill Duggan in the semifinals. Sporleder had sent Duggan to the loss side in a double hill match among the winners’ side final four. Duggan, after victories over Mel Peck and Chad Pike on the loss side, shut Sporleder out in the semifinals. Fitchett, though, turned the tables on Duggan, shutting him out in the finals to capture the Second Chance title.

Next stop on the Action Pool Tour is scheduled for March 17-18 at the First Break Cafe, in Sterling, VA.