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Brady holds off Heeter in double elimination final to capture Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball title

Norris Brady

When they met in the finals of the Feb. 1-2 stop on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour, they were both looking to capture their second-ever title on the tour. Josh Heeter captured his first title anywhere with a win on the tour, just over a year ago, when he lost his opening match and won 11 on the loss side to meet and double dip Brian White. Heeter was also runner-up to BJ Ussery in a tour event in October, and 4th in an event, also won by Ussery, in June. Norris Brady was making his first appearance on the tour since June of 2018, a year in which he won a stop on the tour and finished in the money two other times; 9th in the earlier NC State 9-Ball Championships (March) and 13th at a stop in June. Brady was also the tour’s first tour champion in 2013. They met twice in this most recent event in both sets of a double elimination final with Brady in the hot seat and Heeter having won three on the loss side to meet him. Heeter took the opening set of that final to force a second set, won by Brady. The event drew 68 entrants to Gate City Billiards Club in Greensboro, NC.
They’d both advanced to a winners’ side semifinal. Heeter, facing Clay Davis and Brady, squaring off against Stevie McClinton. Davis sent Heeter to the loss side, as Brady was busy defeating McClinton 9-5. Brady gave up only a single rack, claiming the hot seat 9-1.
On the loss side, it was Chuck Ritchie who drew Heeter, just after surviving two straight double hill fights against Jason Potts and Jeff Abernathy. McClinton picked up Brandon Butts, who’d defeated Jeff Little 5-2 and Zac Leonard 5-5 (Leonard racing to 8).
Butts prevailed in a double hill fight versus McClinton (5-6) and was joined in the quarterfinals by Heeter, who’d eliminated Ritchie 8-4. Heeter then eliminated Butts 8-2 in those quarterfinals to earn himself a rematch against Davis in the semifinals.
Heeter wreaked his vengeance on Davis 8-4, loading himself up on momentum that carried over into the first set of the double elimination final against Brady. Heeter took that opening set 8-1, so they loaded up for a second meet. This one stretched out a bit, as they both looked to claim the title. They battled to double hill before Brady prevailed to claim the event title.
Tour directors Herman and Angela Parker thanked the ownership and staff at Gate City Billiards Club, as well as title sponsor Viking Cues, Bar Pool Tables, Delta 13 Racks, AZ Billiards and Professor Q-Ball. The next stop on the tour, scheduled for Feb. 7-8, will be a $1,000-added event, hosted by The Clubhouse in Lynchburg, VA.

“Jaybird” comes back from hot seat loss to down Roberts and claim NC State One Pocket crown

(l to r): Josh Roberts, TD Herman Parker, Speakeazy owner Jimmy Bullis & Josh Roberts

Jason “Jaybird” Brown and Josh Roberts have been battling at the game of One Pocket since, for sure, as far back as 2008, when they met in Lexington, SC at a Grady Matthews’ Legends of One Pocket event. “Jaybird” won and Roberts finished 4th. Roberts has been generally more active in One Pocket since then, cashing in (as far as we know) 27 events, winning six of them and placing 5th in one of them, playing one-handed; the Derby City Classic's One-Handed, One Pocket Mini in 2010. Our records indicate that Brown has cashed in 12 One Pocket events in that same time frame, though he’s won a slightly larger percentage; three out of that 12, including the 2008 win, one on the Lone Star Billiards Tour in 2011 and most recently, claiming the Super Billiards Expo’s 2015 One Pocket Player’s Championship, after defeating Corey Deuel twice, including in the finals.
So these two established ‘legends of One Pocket’ met again on the long weekend of November 15-17 to battle for the North Carolina State Open One Pocket title on the Q City 9-Ball Tour, sponsored by Beasley Custom Cues. Not surprisingly, they met twice – hot seat and finals – with Roberts winning the former and “Jaybird” winning the latter to claim the event title. The $2,000-added event ($500 from the room, $1,500 from Beasley Custom Cues) drew 30 entrants to Speakeazy Billiards in Sanford, NC, which, by the way, will host the coming weekend’s NC State 10-Ball Open (Nov. 23-24).
Roberts and Brown advanced to their respective winners’ side semifinal matches with Roberts facing Ron Frank and Brown squaring off against Hunter White. Roberts sent Frank over to the loss side 3-1. Brown joined him in the hot seat match after dispatching White, double hill. Roberts took the first of two against Brown 3-1 and sat in the hot seat.
On the loss side, two other strong contenders in the general One Pocket sweepstakes were still in business. One had defeated the other on the winners’ side and both were there when Frank and White joined them after the winners’ side semifinals. White picked up Tony Chohan, who’d sent Mike Davis to the loss side and was in the midst of a six-match, loss-side winning streak that would take him to the semifinals and included recent wins over Derek Leonard and Redgie Cutler, both 3-1. Frank picked up Davis, who’d most recently chalked up two straight shutouts over Christian Stevens and Norris Brady.
By identical 3-1 scores, Chohan and Davis eliminated White and Frank and squared off for their quarterfinal rematch. A somewhat predictable, double hill battle ensued; one of only two in the tournament’s final 14 matches. Chohan prevailed in what proved to be his last win.
“Jaybird” defeated Chohan 3-1 in the semifinals that followed to earn his rematch against Roberts in the hot seat. What the table giveth, the table can also taketh away. With the intangible, though indisputable advantage of momentum (especially given the average length of One Pocket matches), the “Jaybird” defeated Chohan in the finals 4-2 to claim the NC State One Pocket Open title.
Tour directors Herman and Angela Parker thanked Speakeazy owners, Jimmy and Wendy Bullis, and their staff for hosting the event, as well as Beasley Custom Cues and its owner, Doug Beasley, for his ongoing support of the games. As noted above, the Q City 9-Ball Tour will return to Speakeazy Billiards this coming weekend to host the $2,000-added NC State 10-Ball Open.

Brady goes undefeated to capture Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball title in Piedmont, SC

Norris Brady

What the Saturday, June 30 stop on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour lacked in attendance, it more than made up for with a set of tight, double-hill competitive matches in the event’s final 14. Six of those final 14 matches went double hill, including the last two won by Norris Brady, who completed an undefeated run by winning the hot seat and finals that way. The $200-added event drew 21 entrants to Pal’s Billiards in Piedmont, SC.
 Brady faced different opponents in the hot seat and finals of this one. He advanced to a winners’ side semifinal against Colby King, as his eventual opponent in the finals, Steven Ellis, squared off against Dalton Messer. Brady sent King to the loss side 9-3, as Messer sent Ellis over in one of the six double hill matches. Brady and Messer fought another one, battling for the hot seat. Brady won it and waited on the return of Ellis.
On the loss side, Ellis picked up Brian Bagwell, who’d gotten by Kirk Hixon, double hill, and Shane Copeland 7-3. King drew Tom Manley, who’d eliminated James Hall 5-2 and then, his own cousin, Sammy Manley 5-3. Ellis downed Bagwell 6-3, and in the quarterfinals, faced Manley, who’d defeated King 5-1.
It was all double hill fights from here to the finals. Ellis downed Manley, double hill, in the quarterfinals, and then, eliminated Messer that way in the semifinals. With Ellis racing to 6, Brady completed his undefeated run through the field with a first-set, double hill win over Ellis.
Tour directors Herman and Angela Parker thanked the ownership and staff at Pal’s Billiards, as well as title sponsor Viking Cues, Delta 13 Racks, AZBilliards and Professor Q Ball. The next stop on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour, scheduled for this weekend (July 7-8) will be hosted by Borderline Billiards in Bristol, TN.

Lim ends Davis’ two-year reign as NC State 9-Ball Champion

l to r: Reymart Lim & Brandon Shuff

Though the 4th Annual NC State 9-Ball Championships, held under the auspices of the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour on the weekend of March 3-4, saw both of its former champions – Jeff Abernathy (2015) and Mike Davis (2016, 2017) – competing for the title, it was NC State’s current 10-Ball Champion, Reymart Lim, who came back from a defeat by Brandon Shuff, in a winners’ side semifinal, to down him in the finals and claim the title. Before it was done, Lim had also defeated Abernathy, and the Q City 9-Ball Tour’s 2017 Tour Champion, Joshua Padron. The $750-added event drew 50 entrants to Brass Tap Billiards in Raleigh, NC.
Lim advanced through the field to draw Shuff in a winners’ side semifinal, while Abernathy squared off against Chris Bruner in the other one. Shuff, a member of the USA Mosconi Cup team in 2012, and one of three USA players to finish among the top 10 in the 2016 US Open 9-Ball Championships (Shane Van Boening, who won it, and Jeremy Jones were the other two), defeated Lim 9-6 in their first meeting. He was joined in the hot seat match by Bruner, who’d sent Abernathy to the loss side 9-5. Shuff then claimed the hot seat in a double hill battle against Bruner and waited on Lim’s return.
Prior to Lim’s arrival on the loss side, defending champion Davis and Padron had made it to the event’s first money round, where they met. Padron ended Davis’ bid for a third straight title with a 7-5 win, and then eliminated teenager Peter Abatangelo, also 7-5, to draw Lim. Abernathy picked up long-time Carolinas competitor, Keith Bennett, who’d defeated Norris Brady 7-1 and survived a double hill fight against Barry Mashburn.
Lim downed Padron 7-1, and was joined in the quarterfinals by Abernathy, who’d eliminated Bennett 7-5. Abernathy, looking for his second straight appearance in the finals of this event, had his short, loss-side trip ended by Lim 7-2 in those quarterfinals.
Lim went on to down Bruner 7-4 in the semifinals. He completed his run with an 11-6 victory over Shuff in the finals and claimed the NC State 9-Ball title.
Tour directors Herman and Angela Parker thanked the ownership and staff at Brass Tap Billiards, as well as title sponsor Viking Cues, Delta 13 Racks, AZBilliards and Professor Q Ball. The next stop on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour, scheduled for the weekend of March 10-11, will be a $500-added event, hosted by Cue Time Billiards in Spartanburg, SC.

The Rocket takes down The Lion in Mosconi Cup-qualifying Don Coates Memorial

Rodney Morris

In one of the most star-studded events of the year, "Rocket" Rodney Morris came from the loss side to meet and defeat Alex "The Lion" Pagulayan in the finals of the 1st Don Coates Memorial, held on the weekend of April 8-10 in Raleigh, NC. Held in conjunction with a $2,000-added One Pocket event, which finished up on Friday, April 8 (see separate story), the Mosconi Cup-qualifying, $8,000-added 9-Ball event drew 128 of the country's top competitors to Brass Tap Billiards in Raleigh.
By the time Morris and Pagulayan met in the finals, somewhere in the vicinity of 4 a.m, on Monday, April 11, a lot of names that one might have considered to be favorites in the field had already been eliminated, including three former US Open 9-Ball Champions. Gone were Shane Van Boening, Johnny Archer, Stevie Moore, and Mike Delawder, all finishing in the tie for the 17th place. Joining them were Taylor Anderson, Brad Shearer, Keith Bennett, and cue-maker Daniel Heidrich. The tie for 13th place was shared by Tommy Kennedy, Josh Roberts, Jason Brown and Shannon Fitch. Another measure of the event's field strength could be found in the players who failed to 'cash' in the event, including, though not necessarily limited to, Jeremy Sossei, Brandon Shuff, Shaun Wilkie, Hunter Lombardo, Tony Chohan and Robb Saez.
Meanwhile, Pagulayan advanced to a winners' side semifinal against Mike Dechaine. In the other winners' side semifinal, Shane McMinn faced Justin Bergman, who had just sent Morris on his loss-side journey. Pagulayan sent Dechaine over 9-3, while McMinn was busy sending Bergman to the left bracket 9-4, no doubt prompting fans of players in the Midwest to cheer for one of their own. Pagulayan silenced that crowd with a 9-3 victory over McMinn that left Pagulayan in the hot seat.
On the loss side, Dechaine picked up Morris, two matches into his loss-side journey, that saw him defeat Jason Klatt 9-6 and Mike Davis 9-5. Bergman drew Corey Deuel, who'd sent Norris Brady (9-5) and John Morra (9-4) home. It could be argued that any of the matches played at this juncture and beyond featured potential finalists in the event. As it turned out, Morris downed Dechaine 9-6 to earn a quarterfinal matchup versus Deuel, who'd eliminated Bergman 9-3.
Morris downed Deuel 9-5 in those quarterfinals and finished up his loss-side campaign with a commanding 9-2 win over McMinn in the semifinals. The race-to-13 final match was a predictable close battle that came within a game of double hill. Morris closed it out at 13-11 to claim the Don Coates Memorial title.
The event's tour director, David Brown, thanked Brass Tap and Billiards' owner, Tony Coates (son to Don Coates, who passed away last fall and in whose name the event was held). Brown also acknowledged sponsor Beasley Custom Cues, Ray Hansen's PoolActionTV crew for their live-streaming efforts, and Joe Blackburn, for his on-site cue repair work.
As with the previous report on the One Pocket event, this report was compiled thanks to the assistance of Herman Parker, tour director of the Q City 9-Ball Tour, and his wife, Angela, both of whom competed in the event; Angela was the One Pocket tournament's only female.

Frank double dips Clinton to win 4th of July weekend stop on Q City 9-Ball Tour

Trey Frank took two out of three matches against Bobby Clinton to win a July 4th weekend stop on the Q City 9-Ball Tour. The handicapped, 9-ball event drew 38 entrants to the Gate City Billiard Club in Greensboro, NC.
They met first in the battle for the hot seat. Frank had defeated Norris Brady 6-9 (Brady racing to 11), as Clinton was sending Brent Kyles to the loss side 7-3. Clinton took the first of three against Frank 7-3 and waited in the hot seat for him to get back.
On the loss side, Norris Brady ran into David Tickle, who'd defeated Scott Largen 8-2 and Austin Sawyer 8-4 to reach him. Kyles drew Jerry Varnado, recent winner over Mike Davis 8-10 (Davis racing to 13), and Mike Bumgarner 8-5. Brady and Kyles advanced to the quarterfinals; Brady 11-6 over Tickle and Kyles 8-4 over Varnado.
Brady then eliminated Kyles 11-4 for a second shot at Frank in the semifinals. Frank stepped up his game in his second meeting versus Brady, allowing him only five racks of the 11 he would have needed to win, while scoring six to earn himself a second, and, as it turned out, third shot against Clinton in the hot seat.
Frank downed Clinton in both sets of the true double elimination final. Both times, they battled to double hill, which, with Frank racing to 6 and Clinton racing to 7, was a deadlock at 5-6. Frank closed it out 6-6 both times to claim the event title.

Brady knocks Duggan out of hot seat to win GSBT stop

Shannon Daulton, Norris Brady, Bill Duggan, & Steve Compton (owner of Lucky Shot Billiards)

Norris Brady won six on the loss side to meet and defeat hot seat occupant, Bill Duggan, at the July 20-21 weekend stop on the Great Southern Billiard Tour. The $1,000-added amateur event drew 30 entrants to Lucky Shot Billiards in Albemarle, NC.

With Brady at work on the loss side, Duggan advanced among the winners' side final four and met up with Jeff Abernathy, who'd sent Brady west in the second round. Kris Chavez, in the meantime, met up with Daniel Adams in the other winners' side semifinal. Duggan, a B player, downed double-A Abernathy 7-8, as C player Chavez sent B player Adams west 6-6. Duggan survived a double hill hot seat battle, sending Chavez over for a showdown against Brady. 
On the loss side, Brady, with a single notch on his loss-side belt already, defeated Daniel Jones and Ron Park, both 9-6, to earn a re-match against Abernathy. Adams picked up Collin Hall, who'd gotten by Greg Bower 6-2 and Tom Baucom 6-1.  Adams eliminated Hall 7-4, as Brady was wreaking vengeance on Abernathy, handing him his second straight loss in a double hill match. 
Brady took the quarterfinal matchup against Adams 9-2, and then, in the semifinals, completely shut out Chavez. Brady completed his loss-side run with a 9-5 win over Duggan in the finals. 
Shannon and Marge Daulton thanked the ownership and staff at Lucky Shot Billiards, as well as sponsors Nick Varner Cues & Cases, Delta 13 Racks, Andy Gilbert Custom Cues, Tiger Products, and Lomax Custom Cues. The GSBT will be back at Shore Thing Billiards in Myrtle Beach, SC, on the weekend of August 3-4, for a $1,000-added amateur 8-ball tournament. 

On last 2011 GSBT stop, Brady wins his first

Defeated only once, by Glenn Russell in the opening set of a true double elimination final, Norris Brady hung on to prevail in the second set and capture his first-ever victory on the Great Southern Billiard Tour. The $1,500-added, Player Appreciation and End of the Year event was held on the weekend of December 17-18, and drew 52 entrants to Speak Eazy Billiards in Sanford, NC.

From among the winners’ side final four, Brady and his hot seat challenger, Chris Vollmar gave up only one rack between them to advance to the final winners’ side finals. It was Vollmar who gave up that single rack, to Mike Walker, as Brady shut out Tommy Cook. The hot seat match was the proverbial ‘horse of a different color,’ as Brady and Vollmar battled to double hill, before Brady sunk the ball that put him into the hot seat to await Russell.

Russell, in the meantime, was in the midst of a 10-match winning streak on the loss-side that began when he was defeated in the event’s opening round by Ray Cheek. With five down and five to go, Russell got by Cotton Trivett 9-5 and Shawn Ray 9-2 to pick up Cook. Walker drew B.J. Hucks, who’d defeated Paul Peters 9-6 and Billy Thorpe 9-4 to reach him. Russell downed Cook 9-5 and was joined in the quarterfinal match by Hucks, who’d defeated Walker 9-4. 

Russell then dropped Hucks into fourth place 9-6 and gave up only three racks in his subsequent semifinal victory over Vollmar. He opened the true double elimination final with a double hill win in the opening set, but fell short in the second. Brady took the second set 9-5 to secure his first-ever win on the GSBT.

Tour directors Shannon and Marge Daulton awarded a Free Entry to the 9th through 12th place finishers Scott Roberts, Cotton Trivett, Paul Peters and Wendell Thompkins. The Daultons took time out to thank not only the owner and staff of Speak Eazy Billiards in Sanford, NC for their support in hosting the tour’s final event of the year, but all of the venue owners who’ve contributed to the success of the tour throughout the year. They also thanked their sponsors: Andy Gilbert Custom Cues, Nick Varner Cues and Cases, Mike Davis Exterminating, Tiger Products and Delta-13 racks.