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Robbie Saez wins in Hamden

Robb Saez with Mika Immonen

When Mike Zuglan brings his Joss Northeast 9-Ball Tour into any town you know the quality of players no matter the size of the field will always be top notch. As it was this past week end at Action Billiards in Hamden, CT.

38 players made up the field including names like San Souci, Zuglan, Morris, Hernandez, Saez, Altomare and more. Sal Bevilacqua added $1500 to the purse and the players went at it for the $4540 at stake.Right from the beginning it was great matches, Frank Hernandez beat Greg Hoagland 9-8, Tom"Shorty" D'Alfonso drilled Rodney Morris 9-3. Local Players Tony Frissina upset Teddy Garrahan and Ginky to go undefeated for the day. Steve Tavernier sent Rodney packing and not making the money in his first Joss appearance. Tavernier and SanSouci squared off and played one of the greatest sets ever with Ginky winning 9-8. Going undefeated for Saturday along with Frissina would be Robbie Saez, Mike Zuglan and Tom D'Alfonso. On the one loss side we had SanSouci vs Hernandez, Chris Biddle vs Greg Hoagland.
Sunday, Saez beat Frissina and Zuglan to get to the hot seat. While Ginky got beat by Frankie Hernandez. Zuglan and Hernandez met for the right to meet Saez in the finals. Playing strong Mike beat Frankie and the finals were set. In the true double elimination event Zuglan came out firing and playing great 9-ball. Winning the set 9-7 Zuglan looked invincible and got ready for set two. In the second set it was Robbie's Saez all the way, neutralizing Mikes great shot making with great safety play and then getting out when he had too. Before you knew it it was 9-4 Saez for the win. This was win number 8 for Robbie on the Joss tour and he was the defending champion of this event.
Many thanks to the Bevilacqua boys for their hospitality in this great pool room/sports bar. On behalf of Mike Zuglan, Danny Janes, myself and all of us on the Joss Northeast 9-ball tour. We would like to wish all our players, room owners, friends and fans a wonderful holiday and a great New Year. We will back in action 1/12/02 at Rhode Island Billiards in North Providence, RI.

Magic Man wins in Syracuse

‘The Magic Man’ Teddy Garrahan

Mike Zuglan's Joss Northeast 9-Ball Tour stop #7 was at Joe Speach's Salt City Billiards this past weekend. While 45 players shot for the $5100 in prize money, the great pool fans of the Syracuse, NY fans got to see some great pool and enjoy some of the best food you ever tasted at a sporting event. Sausage and peppers, tortalini soup, barbecue beef, macaroni and meatballs, carrot cake and more were on the menu. If you didn't cash at this tournament you could at least gain 5 pounds. Adding $1500 and playing on some great Gold Crown one tables with Simonis cloth and using centennial balls made this a really great event.

Saturday started with some very tough matches Ron "Julio" Casanzio had to beet Chuck Altomare, Ryan McCreesh and Mike Zuglan to go through the day unscathed, Rochester's Lyn Wechsler had to win over Raphael Saldana, last weeks winner Ray Cruz and have an incredible comeback from an 4-8 deficit to win on the hill against Bob Levandowski. Joining Casanzio and Wechsler on the winners side for the day was Teddy Garrahan and Jim Forsythe. On the one loss side we had Tim Parisian, Mike Zuglan, Gary Empey and Bob Levandowski. Making the cash line but not returning Sunday was Time Allen, Mike Hurley, Ryan McCreesh and Claude Spence.
Sunday Started with Teddy Garrrahan beating Wechsler only to lose to Julio for the hot seat. Casanzio had beaten Forsythe and now had to wit for the play on the one loss side.Wechsler upset Zuglan 9-7 and then lost to Gary Empey. Garrahan beat Empey for the losers side and got a chance to meet Ron Casanzio in the finals. In the finals the people got to see why we call Ted Garrahan the Magic Man. Garrahan won the first set of the true double elimination 9-5 including an incredible out from the hill that included a jump shot a table length combination and a carom. In the second set it was 6-0 by the time Casanzio got to shoot and when he did he played great. Playing safe and scratching his way to win 4 games Julio then proceeded to snap two 9's in a row to get to 6 and we all thought it was going to be a match again. But when Casanzio broke and made nothing Ted made the one and a 2-9 carom to win the match.
All the staff at Salt City did a great job and the fans got to see great pool with no admission charge. We look forward a returning next year and I personally am not eating a thing the week before this event. Many thanks to Joe and Judy Speach for a great job. Next stop on the tour is Nov. 17 in Levittown, NY(Long Island) at Leisuretime Billiards.

Ray Cruz wins in Rochester

Stop #6 on Mike Zuglan's Joss Northeast 9-Ball Tour was held this weekend at the Classic Billiards Club in Rochester, NY. Owner Jacky Vaccaro and GM Rich Warren added $2500 to the purse and 49 Players showed.

Play all weekend was nothing short of spectacular and almost every match was a nail biter. Saturdays action started right off great matches. Steve Tavernier and Dan Kolacz went toe to toe to the wire when Tavernier over stocked a safety on the 7 ball leaving Kolacz with a tough table length shot that he split the pocket with to win. Canadians Paul Thornley, Jeff Pillon and Ray Cruz went through the day untouched along with Dan Kolacz. On the one Loss side of the chart we had Ron Casansio, Lyn Wechsler, Frank Piasecki, Dan Smith, Rich Difulio, Rey Rendon, Mike Zuglan and Ted Garrahan.
Sunday came and the play really became intense for the day. Mike Zuglan came out smoking and drilled Teddy Garrahan 9-3 then Rey Rendon 9-3, then Jeff Pillon fell to Zuglan 9-5. Ron Casansio better know to all as "Julio" beat Wechsler, Smith and Kolacz to set up one of the greatest matches of the year so far against Zuglan. Back and forth all the way to the hill these two guys butted heads and in the 17th game Julio missed a makable 3 only to leave Zuglan with no shot. After making a great kick and a good hit Zuglan returned to the chair while Julio did it again on the next ball. Missing the four, he left Mike again with no shot. Ron only missed few balls in this entire match. Fortunately he missed them very well and was able to win the set 9-8 leaving Zuglan with a respectable 4th place. Casansio went on to beat up on Paul Thornley to get the right to meet Cruz in the finals. But this day belonged to Ray Cruz. This quiet unassuming fellow from Toronto showed all his talent and class for two days. Great shot making and good sportsmanship are the ways of this guy. Sitting in his chair when not shooting, never making any noise of movements, giving every player he played the best racks they could get was what he did all weekend long. And it really paid off for him.
In the finals after being close 5-4 Cruz, Raymond seemed to shift into high gear and get out from everywhere. When the dust settled it was 9-6 Cruz and his first Joss northeast tour victory.
It is hard to imagine a better place to play pool and socialize in the Northeast. Great equipment, knowledgeable fans and the friendliest people you could meet. Our thanks to them and our sponsors Joss Cues, Webb Custom Cues, Capone cues, Giuseppe cases and Simonis cloth for helping make this tour as successful as it is.