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Coe double dips Helton to claim Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball title

Dustin Coe

Dustin Coe missed being the 2020 Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour champion last year, by two games. At the Jan. 12, 2021 event in Chesnee, SC, Coe advanced to the hot seat match, and lost, double hill, to Benny Walters. In the semifinal that followed, against the eventual tour champion, Derek Formby, Coe was eliminated in what was a second straight double hill match for both of them. In his first recorded cash-payout finish since that event, this past weekend (April 30-May 1), Coe repeated half of the pattern; advancing to the hot seat and being sent to the semifinals, by Brandon Helton. Coe came back from this one, though, winning three straight double hill matches, double-dipping Helton in the two-set double elimination final to claim the title. The $250-added event drew a short field of 21 entrants to Sonny’s Billiards in Princeton, WV.

It was an event replete with double hill battles. Just under half (7) of the event’s final 15 matches went that route, including five straight from the 5th/6th matches to the two-set final. The first of the seven was fought between Helton and Robert Hamilton in one of the winners’ side semifinals. Helton sent Hamilton to the loss side with that double hill win and in the hot seat match, faced Coe, who’d defeated Joe Swim 7-3 in the other winners’ side semifinal. In a straight-up race to 6, Helton downed Coe 6-4 to claim the hot seat.

On the loss side, two competitors – Derek Bonds and Chris Woodrum – were in the midst of six-match, loss-side winning streaks that would take them as far as the quarterfinals (Bonds) and semifinals (Woodrum). Coming over from the winners’ side semifinal, Hamilton drew Bonds, who’d chalked up loss-side wins #4 and #5 against Mike Robertson 5-3 and Ron Frank 5-5 (Frank racing to 8). Swim picked up Woodrum, who’d chalked up his loss-side wins #3 and #4 versus Thomas Sansone and Dwain Barberie, both 6-2. For those keeping track, Barberie came into the 7/8 match, having chalked up one of the seven, final-15 double hill matches, downing Andrew Farley.

Bonds defeated Hamilton 5-4 (Hamilton racing to 7), as Woodrum eliminated Swim, double hill. Woodrum then stopped Bonds’ loss-side winning streak, double hill, in the quarterfinals.

The final three matches yielded the same double hill scores. Coe eliminated Woodrum in the semifinals (7-5; Woodrum racing to 6) and then double-dipped Helton in the finals (same score; Helton racing to 6).

Tour director Herman Parker thanked the ownership and staff at Sonny’s Billiards, as well as title sponsor Viking Cues,, Dirty South Grind Apparel Co., Realty One Group Results, Diamond Brat,, Ridge Back Rails, and Federal Savings Bank Mortgage Division.

The Ron Park Memorial will return for its second year to West End Billiards in Gastonia, NC this coming weekend (May 7-8). The 2nd Annual Ron Park Memorial will be a $250-added, Scotch Doubles tournament. 

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Eric Roberts, sitting in the hot seat, splits with Ussery on Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour

Eric Roberts

Though a junior state champion in both Florida and Tennessee (where he currently resides), a Billiards Education Foundation Junior National Artistic Pool Champion in 2013 (14-and-under division), runner-up in that event twice (2015/2018) and a frequent, cash-winning competitor on the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour, on which he won his first recorded payout ($50 for 9th place on the tour) five years ago, Eric Roberts, until this past weekend, had yet to chalk up an event title. Technically speaking, because he and BJ Ussery opted out of a final match on the February 13-14 stop on the Q City-9-Ball Tour, he still hasn’t won a title outright. As the undefeated occupant of the hot seat at the time he and Ussery came to an agreement on splitting the event’s top two cash prizes this past weekend, though, he does have one of those (*) asterisk event titles to his name. No small feat before you’ve graduated from high school. The tour stop drew 48 entrants to Borderline Billiards in Bristol, TN.

It was Roberts who sent Ussery to the loss side, downing him 9-1 in a winners’ side quarterfinal. Roberts advanced to face Robert Hamilton in one of the winners’ side semifinals, as Mark Hurst squared off in the other one against Dustin Lackey, who’d been runner-up on the tour, two weeks ago. Roberts got into the hot seat match with a 9-5 victory over Hamilton. Hurst joined him after surviving a double hill battle against Lackey. In what proved to be his final match, Roberts claimed his first (recorded) hot seat match on the tour by shutting Hurst out.

On the loss side, Ussery followed his loss to Roberts with victories over Jaxson Hurst (Mark’s son) 12-1 and Hunter White 12-7 to draw Lackey. Hamilton came over and picked up Josh Miller, who’d recently shut out Daniel Shelton and eliminated Travis Guerra 5-4 (Guerra racing to 6).

Ussery ousted White 12-7 and in the quarterfinals, faced Hamilton, who’d gotten by Miller 6-4. Ussery took the quarterfinal match 12-3 over Hamilton and then, punctuating his five-match, loss-side winning streak, shut out Mark Hurst in the semifinals. He and Roberts negotiated the two-cash-prize split and everybody went home.

Tour directors Herman and Angela Parker thanked Janet Atwell and her Borderline Billiards staff for their hospitality, as well as title sponsor Viking Cues,, AZBilliards, Federal Savings Bank Mortgage Division and Dirty South Grind Apparel Co. The Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour continues to battle the varied restrictions and closures of the states it visits in the southeast corner of the US and lost one of those battles in a search for a stop this coming weekend. The next stop on the tour, scheduled for February 27-28, will be hosted by Gate City Billiards Club in Greensboro, NC and will be held to benefit local pool player, Alissa Murph, to help offset the cost of her recently-diagnosed battle against cancer.