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Powell, Marcus and Herrell split top three prizes on Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour

Hank Powell

A decision was made early, prior to the quarterfinals, by hot seat occupant Hank Powell, Orlando Marcus and Matt Harrell. In a mutual desire not to return to Breaktime Billiards in Winston-Salem, NC on Easter Sunday, the three negotiated a payout settlement that didn’t quite end the stop on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour right away. It did, however, as planned, bring it to an end in the very early morning hours of Sunday, April 17, so that the remaining participants were able to spend that Easter Sunday with their families. The $500-added event drew 41 entrants to Breaktime Billiards. 

Powell and Marcus, who were to become the official winner and runner-up of the event, did meet in the hot seat match. Powell had defeated Matt Harrell 8-2 in one of the winners’ side semifinals, as Marcus had sent Daniel Shelton to the loss side 6-5 in the other one (Shelton racing to 7). In the match that was allowed to stand as the definitive match between them, Powell defeated Marcus 8-3.

When Harrell and Shelton arrived on the loss side of the bracket, they entered the first money round of the event, and what became the first two of three matches left. Harrell picked up Eric Stanton, who’d defeated Travis Guerra and 12-year-old Jas Makhani (son of the venue’s owner, Sundeep Makahni), both 6-2. Shelton drew junior competitor Joey Tate, who’d survived a double hill fight against Kelly Farrar (9-6) and eliminated Mark Bolton 9-4

Harrell defeated Stanton 7-2, advancing to the event’s final match. Shelton joined him after downing Tate 7-4. So, there they were, the four combatants, who had comprised the winners’ side final four, still standing, as the quarterfinals went to Marcus 7-5 over Shelton.

The ‘split’ arrangement had been made a while ago, so there was virtually no delay when the final ball in that quarterfinal dropped. Everybody went home for Easter Sunday.

Tour director Herman Parker thanked Sundeep Makahni and his Breaktime Billiards staff for their hospitality, as well as title sponsor Viking Cues, BarPoolTables.net, Dirty South Grind Apparel Co., Realty One Group Results, Diamond Brat, AZBilliards.com, Ridge Back Rails, and Federal Savings Bank Mortgage Division. The next stop on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour, scheduled for this weekend, April 23-24, will be a $500-added event, hosted by Break & Run Billiards in Chesnee, SC.    

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Ailstock wins first Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour stop in five years

Jonathan Ailstock

Jonathan Ailstock’s recorded cash earnings on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour (19 events) date back to a third-place finish in 2015 and have been updated to include his most recent of four wins on the tour, the last of which (prior to this past weekend; March 12-13) occurred in June, 2017. He and Cameron Lawhorne battled twice at this most recent event, which drew 33 entrants to Still Cluckin’ Billiards in Providence, NC. 

Ailstock and Lawhorne met up for the first time in the hot seat match. Ailstock had advanced to face Scott Roberts in one of the winners’ side semifinals as Lawhorne and Orlando Marcus squared off in the other one. Lawhorne/Marcus went double hill (8-5, with Marcus racing to 6) before Lawhorne advanced to face Ailstock, who’d sent Roberts west 7-3. 

The first of their two matches went double hill. With Lawhorne racing to 8, Ailstock snared the hot seat 7-7, sending Lawhorne off to the semifinals.

On the loss side, Roberts moved over to pick up Jesse Cortner, who’d defeated Tyson Pey 5-2 and the previous stop’s winner, DJ Brads 5-4. Brads, coming off that earlier win, had his handicap raised to ‘6,’ instead of the ‘5’ it was during the last event. Last week, 5-4 would have meant ‘double hill,’ but ire ad tempus (time marches on). Marcus drew Justin Knuckles, who,  with his opponent Collin Hall, racing to 7, had eliminated him 6-5. Hall was runner-up in Ailstock’s last tour win in 2017. Knuckles went on to defeat Dakota Ash 6-3 for his meetup with Marcus.

Roberts made short work of Cortner 8-1, and advanced to the quarterfinals. In a straight-up race to 6, Knuckles survived a double hill fight against Marcus to join him.

With Roberts racing to 8, Knuckles advanced to the semifinal 6-6, only to be eliminated by Lawhorne 8-2. In their second matchup, Ailstock prevailed 7-5 to claim the event title.

Tour director Herman Parker thanked the ownership and staff at Still Cluckin’ for their hospitality, as well as title sponsor Viking Cues, BarPoolTables.net, Break Time Billiards of Winston-Salem, NC, Dirty South Grind Apparel Co., Realty One Group Results, Diamond Brat, AZBilliards.com, Ridge Back Rails, and Federal Savings Bank Mortgage Division. The next stop on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour, the West Virginia State 9-Ball Championships, a $1,000-added Open (no handicap) event, scheduled for this weekend (March 19-20), will be hosted by Sonny’s Billiards in Princeton, WV.

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Powell and Harrell split top prizes on Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour

Hank Powell

Since Hank Powell began competing regularly on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour in 2019, he has won four times, been runner-up five times, 3rd and 4th once each, 5th four times and 7th twice. This year has proved to be his best earnings year to date and though he split this past weekend’s (Saturday, September 18) stop on the tour with Matt Harrell, as undefeated occupant of the hot seat, Powell claimed his second 2021 tour victory. He opened his 2021 campaign with a January victory at Sonny’s Billiards in Princeton, WV. The $500-added event this past weekend drew 40 entrants to Breaktime Sports Bar & Billiards in Winston-Salem, NC. 

Powell and Harrell allowed their first and only meeting, in a winners’ side semifinal, to stand as the deciding match. As those two squared off, Brian Francis and Jason Rogers met up in the other winners’ side semifinal. 

Powell sent Harrell to the loss side 8-2 and advanced to the hot seat match, where he was joined by Francis, who downed Rogers 6-1. In a double hill battle, Powell claimed the hot seat over Francis.

On the loss side, Harrell picked up Mike Hagood, who, to reach him, had eliminated Jesse Cortner in a shutout and an up-and-coming junior player, Cole Lewis 7-3. Rogers drew Orlando Marcus, who’d recently defeated David Strum, double hill and Travis Guerra 6-3.

Harrell advanced to the quarterfinals 7-5 over Hagood. He was joined by Marcus, who’d defeated Rogers 6-6 (Rogers racing to 8). Harrell gave up only a single rack to Marcus in those quarterfinals and then defeated Francis in the semifinals 7-5.

It was in the early morning hours of Sunday, September 19, when Powell and Harrell negotiated a split of the top two prizes, making Powell the official winner.

Tour director Herman Parker thanked the ownership and staff at Breaktime Billiards and Sports Bar for their hospitality, as well as title sponsor Viking Cues, BarPoolTables.net, Dirty South Grind Apparel Co., Diamond Brat, Federal Savings Bank’s Mortgage Division and AZBilliards. The next stop on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour, scheduled for Sept. 25-26, will be a $500-added event, to be hosted by Sonny’s Billiards in Princeton, WV.