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Sim goes undefeated to win his first Tri-State Tour stop

Miguel Laboy, Del Sim and Emit Yolcu

The hot seat was a new experience for Del Sim. So was victory in the finals. He did both on Sunday, April 10, when he went undefeated at a Tri-State Tour stop, successfully navigating two matches versus Miguel Laboy to claim the title. The $462-added event drew 21 entrants to the Cue Bar in Bayside (Queens), NY.
Sim and LaBoy met first in a winners' side semifinal, as Emit Yolcu squared off against Tyrronnie Harlee in the other one. Sim took the first of two against Laboy 7-5. By the same score, Yolcu sent Harlee to the loss side. Sim claimed his first hot seat in a double hill win over Yolcu and waited in it for the return of Laboy.
On the loss side, Laboy picked up Riyadh Benghalem, who'd defeated Steve Kaminow 7-3, and Mike Harrington 7-2 to reach him. Harlee drew Pat Mareno, who'd eliminated Esteban Morrell 6-3 and survived a double hill battle versus Ambi Estevez. Laboy got by Benghalem 7-5, and was joined in the quarterfinals by Mareno, who benefited from a medical forfeiture by Harlee.
Laboy and Mareno battled to double hill, before Laboy finished it at 10-9 and turned to face Yolcu in the semifinals. Another double hill match ensued, with Laboy emerging for a shot at Sim in the hot seat.
Sim ended Laboy's loss-side streak and hopes for revenge. He claimed his first title with an 8-5 victory in the finals.
Tour representatives thanked the ownership and staff at the Cue Bar, as well as sponsors Ozone Billiards, Sterling-Gaming, Kamui Tips, Ron Vitello, Phil Capelle, BlueBook Publishing, Human Kinetics, and Bloodworth Ball Cleaners. With the Super Billiards Expo, scheduled for next weekend (April 14-17), and a subsequent Open Date, the next stop on the Tri-State Tour is scheduled for Sunday, May 1, and will be hosted by BQE Billiards and Bar in Jackson Heights, NY.

Shaw goes undefeated, Astashian comes from the loss side to win Predator Open/Pro & Amateur

Hunter Lombardo, Jayson Shaw, Mike Wong & Gotham City Billiards Room Owner Kevin Buckley

Jayson Shaw picked up his third 2016 title on the weekend of March 19-20. Following his wins at the Derby City 10-Ball Challenge and the New England Pool and Billiard Hall of Fame 9-Ball Open, he went undefeated in the Open/Pro event on the Predator Tour. In the Amateur event on the same weekend, Steve Astashian came from the loss side to defeat Nayan Roy and pick up his first win on the Predator Tour. The amateur event drew 84 entrants to Gotham City Billiards in Brooklyn, NY. The Open/Pro event drew 13.
Shaw's undefeated path to the winners' circle in the Open/Pro event went through Mike Wong twice. Fresh off a double hill win over Hunter Lombardo in a winners' side semifinal, Shaw faced Wong, who'd sent Frankie Hernandez to the loss side 7-5. Shaw shut Wong out and waited in the hot seat for Round Two.
On the loss side, Hernandez picked up Gotham City House Pro Jorge Rodriguez, who'd gotten by Brandon Hernandez 7-1 and Mike Dechaine 7-3. Lombardo drew Tony Robles, who'd defeated Koka Davladze 7-5 and Brooke Meyer 7-1. Two 7-4 wins over Robles and Hernandez put Lombardo and Rodriguez in the quarterfinals, won by Lombardo 7-1. 
Two straight double hill battles followed, with Wong downing Lombardo in the semifinals, and Shaw, completing his undefeated run and claiming the title in the finals.
Astashian's path to victory in the Amateur event went through Nayan Roy twice. He'd sent Riyadh Benghalem to the loss side 7-3 in a winners' side semifinal to face Roy in the hot seat match. Roy had sent Dan Faraguna west 7-5. Roy claimed the hot seat in a double hill win over Astashian and waited for him to get back.
On the loss side, Faraguna picked up Javier Romero, who'd picked up a forfeit win over Carmine Andujar and defeated Edwin Gutkin 7-3. Benghalem got Willie Santiago, who'd downed "Devil" Dave Ascolese 7-4 and Arturo Reyes, double hill. Faraguna and Benghalem advanced to the quarterfinals; Faraguna, 7-4 over Romero and Benghalem, double hill over Santiago.
Benghalem chalked up a second straight double hill win with a victory over Faraguna in those quarterfinals, and was then eliminated by Astashian 7-2 in the semifinals. The second meeting between Astashian and Roy, in the finals, was another double hill battle, but this one went to Astashian to complete his first Predator Tour win.

Reyes stops loss side challenge by Villalobos and goes undefeated on Predator Amateur stop

Nayan Roy, Arturo Reyes, Riyadh Benghalem & Rene Villalobos

Arturo Reyes has chalked up a number of event victories on the Tri-State Tour over the past six or seven years, but until the weekend of March 5-6, this year, he had yet to win one (as far as our records indicate) on the Predator Tour. He came close last June, when he was runner-up to Tony Liang on a Predator stop, and had finished fourth in the 2015 Empire State Championships.
This past weekend, Reyes worked his way undefeated through of field of 72, on hand for the 'double (ranking) points,' $1,000-added event, hosted by the Cue Bar in Bayside, NY. He was challenged in the finals by Rene Villalobos, who, following a defeat at the hands of Nayan Roy, won five on the loss side for the right to face Reyes in the finals.
Nayan Roy moved on from his defeat of Villalobos to a winners' side semifinal versus Irene Kim, as Reyes was challenged by Omar Alli.  Reyes moved on to the hot seat match after a 7-5 win over Alli. He was joined by Roy, who'd dispatched Kim to the loss side 8-4. Reyes claimed the hot seat 7-5 and waited on what turned out to be the return of Villalobos.
On the loss side, Kim drew Villalobos, who'd opened his loss-side trek with a double hill win over Adrian Daniel and 7-4 victory over Jessica Lynn. Alli picked up Riyadh Benghalem, who'd eliminated James Stevens 7-3 and Elvis Rodriguez 7-2. Villalobos and Benghalem handed Kim and Alli their second straight losses; Villalobos double hill over Kim, and Benghalem, almost double hill (7-5) over Alli.
Villalobos then downed Benghalem in the quarterfinals 7-3. Roy gave Villalobos a run for his semifinal, re-match money, forcing a case game, but Villalobos prevailed for a shot at Reyes. Reyes completed his undefeated run with a 9-7 victory in the finals to claim his first Amateur Predator title. 
Tour director Tony Robles thanked Sammy An and his staff at the Cue Bar, as well as sponsors Predator Cues, National Amateur Pool League, Ozone Billiards, Delta-13 racks, Gotham City Technologies,, The DeVito Team, Billiards Press, AZ Billiards, Billiards Digest, and Pool & Billiard Magazine. He also thanked William Finnegan, Mandy Wu, and Irene Kim for their assistance with the tournament, as well as his wife, Gail Robles.

Osipov wins record-breaking season opener on the Predator Tour

Ross Lacy, Erick Carrasco, Rene Villalobos and Alex Osipov

Ko-Pin Chung and Jorge Rodriguez share Open/Pro title
For the second year in a row, the New York-based Predator Tour set a season-opening debut, playing host this year to 118 amateur competitors on the weekend of January 16-17. The $1,000-added Amateur event, along with an Open/Pro event that drew 16 entrants was hosted by Steinway Billiards in Astoria (Queens), NY. Alex Osipov went undefeated through the Amateur field to claim that title, while Jorge Rodriguez and Ko-Pin Chung shared the Open/Pro title.
The Open/Pro event featured World Champion Ko-Pin Yi and his brother, Ko-Pin Chung, who battled against each other in a winners' side semifinal while Jorge Rodriguez and Max Dudanets squared off in the other one. Yi defeated his brother, 7-3 to face Rodriguez, who'd sent Dudanets to the loss side 7-2. Rodriguez claimed the hot seat 7-5 over Yi.
Chung and Dudanets moved to the loss side to encounter what was left of a more familiar crowd of Predator competitors. Chung drew Zion Zvi, who'd eliminated Andrew Seroshean 7-3 and Sean "Alaska" Morgan 7-4. Dudanets picked up Nelson Oliveira, who'd gotten by Mike Yednak 7-5 and Fedor Gorst, double hill. Oliviera advanced with a 7-2 win over Dudanets to meet Chung, who'd defeated Zvi 7-4. Chung eliminated Oliveira in the quarterfinal match 7-2, and locked up in a double hill fight with his brother in the semifinals, which proved to be the final match of the night. Chung prevailed to claim/share the Open/Pro title with Rodriguez.
In the Amateur event, after five matches, Alex Osipov and Eric Carrasco proved to be the last two winners standing among the field of 118. In the winners' side semifinal, Osipov defeated Ross Lacy 7-4, as Carrasco was busy sending Rene Villalobos to the losers' bracket 7-5. Osipov claimed the hot seat 9-6 over Carrasco and waited on what turned out to be the return of Lacy.
Moving to the loss side, Villalobos and Lacy found themselves embroiled in two tough battles immediately; Villalobos against Emit Yulco, who'd defeated Brad McDuffie and Lucas Fracasso, both 7-5, and Lacy against Riyadh Benghalem, who'd gotten by Rhys Chen 7-3 and Manny Stamatakis (owner of Steinway Billiards) 7-4. Villalobos survived a double hill match against Yulco, as Lacy came within a game of double hill before prevailing 7-5 against Benghalem. Lacy took the quarterfinal match 8-5 over Villalobos, and then downed Carrasco in the semifinals 10-6. 
Lacy proved to be a little more resilient in his rematch against Osipov. He forced a case game, which was won by Osipov to claim the Amateur title.
Miguel Laboy picked up a win in a Second Chance tournament, defeating Abel Rosario in the finals. Lucas Fracasso (who finished 7/8 in the main event Amateur tournament) won a third chance tournament, defeating Gene Hunt
Tour director Tony Robles thanked Manny Stamatakis and his staff at Steinway Billiards, as well as sponsors Predator Cues, National Amateur Pool League, Ozone Billiards, Delta-13 racks, Gotham City Technologies,, The DeVito Team, Billiards Press, AZ Billiards, Billiards Digest, and Pool & Billiard Magazine. He also thanked William Finnegan, Mandy Wu, and Irene Kim for their assistance with the tournament, as well as his wife, Gail Robles.