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McGuire, Frank win 9-Ball, One Pocket events on Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour

Though a combination of other nearby events and the occasion of Father’s Day put a damper on total attendance, the Viking Cues’ Q City 9-Ball Tour held a single-day, double-event stop last weekend (June 19). A 9-ball event, on 7 ft. bar tables, which drew 22 entrants, was won by Brandon McGuire, who went undefeated. A One Pocket event, on 9 ft. Diamond tables, which featured a $100 entry fee, drew 9 entrants and was won by Ron Frank, Jr., who, following a defeat at the hands of Shane Jackson in the hot seat match, came back to defeat him in the finals. The two events were hosted by Railbirds Billiards in Hickory, NC.

The father/son combination of Ron Frank, Jr. and Trey Frank featured prominently in both events. Dad went home the day before Father’s Day with the One Pocket title, while son Trey finished as runner-up in the 9-ball event, which featured the unrealized potential of a father-son quarterfinal.

In the 9-ball tourney, Brandon McGuire advanced to a winners’ side semifinal versus Jerry Hilton, while Jeff Howell and Josh Allen squared off in the other one. McGuire and Hilton battled to double hill before McGuire prevailed, sending Hilton to the 5/6 matches on the loss side. Allen moved west, as well, defeated by Howell 7-1. McGuire claimed the hot seat 5-2 over Howell and waited on the return of what turned out to be Trey Frank.

On the loss side, Trey Frank, who’d been sent over by his Dad in the second round, picked up a forfeit victory over Jonathan Ailstock and defeated Jamie Green 7-4 to draw Hilton. Allen drew Ron Frank. Trey did his part, advancing to the quarterfinals 7-5 over Hilton. Dad, though, was defeated by Josh Allen 5-6 (Frank racing to 8).

Trey eliminated Josh Allen 7-3 and then earned himself a shot at McGuire in the hot seat with a 7-5 victory over Jeff Howell in the semifinals. McGuire concluded his undefeated run with a 5-3 win over Trey Frank in the finals.

Frank, Jr. and Jackson battle twice for One Pocket title.

Ron Frank, Jr. and Shane Jackson played two double hill matches to decide who’d bring home the $450 first-place prize in the One Pocket event. Jackson won the first one. Frank, Jr. won the second to claim that title.

They’d both advanced through two rounds to the winners’ side semifinals. They both defeated their opponents in those winners’ side semifinals 3-1; Frank over Matt Harrell and Jackson over Hunter White. Jackson claimed the hot seat in the first of the two double hill matches he’d play against Frank.

On the loss side, Harrell ran into Jonathan Ailstock, who’d shut out Lee Steelman to reach him. Hunter White picked up Jerry Hilton, who’d eliminated Doug Young and Robert Hamilton, both 2-1. White shut Hilton out and in the quarterfinals, faced Ailstock, who’d sent Harrell home 2-1. 

White then shut out Ailstock in those quarterfinals and entered the semifinals versus Frank without having given up a single rack in either of his loss-side matches. He gave up two to Frank in those semifinals and chalked up only one himself.

Frank moved on to his second double hill match against Jackson. This one, he won to claim the event title.

Tour director Herman Parker thanked Steven and Leslie Hughes and the Railbirds’ staff for their hospitality, as well as title sponsor Viking Cues,, 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 the weekend of June 26-27, will be hosted by Jac’s All-American Billiards in Newport, TN.  

Dechaine Dominates Strong Field Under the No Conflict Rules

Dechaine (L), Bartram (R)

The Spring version of the quarterly Tri-State Open Nine-Ball Series at Gold Crown Billiards in Erie PA saw the strongest field yet in any of their events. Participating were 3 past Mosconi Cup players, not to mention 12 past winners and runners-up along with a handful of other professional players. A full field of 32 players competed in the one day, $4000 added event.

The rules for the tournament included, fouls on all balls, no short games, and the No Conflict Rules for racking and breaking. Under the rules, players are not required to pocket a ball on the break in order to get their first shot. Players alternate breaks and shoot what they break. One hundred and fifteen matches were played without incident and controversy that usually surround the racking and breaking process. The author of the rules, Paul Schofield, owner and proprietor of Gold Crown Billiards, contends the current rules poison matches and corrupt entire tournaments. Schofield further explains “The rules for our event heavily favor the better player.” A full set of the rules are posted on the Gold Crown Billiards website.

The top 4 finishers also happened to be the top 4 bids in the player auction. They finished in order from highest bid to 4th highest bid. Mike Dechaine from Waterville ME put on a clinic,winning 7 straight matches to win the event. Dechaine breezed through the qualifying rounds trouncing Ron Casanzio (Rochester NY) 6-3, Willie VanGuilder (Garland PA) 6-0, Jerry Crowe (Bathe NY) 6-2, and Shayne Morrow (Erie PA) 6-3. In the championship bracket, Dechaine picked up where he left of by putting down Jerry Crowe again 8-1 in the quarter-finals. Things got tough in the semi-finals where Alex Olinger (Dayton OH) took Mike Dechaine to the hill only to have Dechaine break and run the last game under the threat of elimination. Continuing on his reign of terror, Dechaine easily handled Chris Bartram (Columbus OH) 8-4 in the finals.

Chris Bartram fought hard, grinding through the qualifying rounds with a 6-2 record, earning a spot in the championship bracket. Bartram downed Shane Jackson (Pittsburgh PA) in the quarter-finals 8-5 and went on in the semis to defeat Shawn Putnam (Powder Springs GA) 8-5. Dechaine was on fire and proved too much for Bartram in the finals.

The tournament was a success. The unusual rules were well received. Gold Crown Billiards will look to grow this annual event in future years by picking up additional sponsors and recruiting stronger fields.