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Mills downs Crosby twice to win Open event of 3rd Annual Labor Day Classic at Capone’s

Tony Crosby, Donny Mills and Kyle Bova

Fisher and Jankowski split top prizes in Amateur event

Joining the ranks of Jason Richko and Tommy Kennedy, who won the event in 2018 and 2019, respectively, another Florida pool-playing veteran, Donny Mills went undefeated to claim Capone’s 2020 Labor Day Classic, held on the weekend of September 5-6. Mills had to get by Tony Crosby twice, in the hot seat and finals, to complete his run at the $400-added Open 10-Ball event of the Classic, that drew 24 entrants to Capone’s in Spring Hill, FL.

In the $200-added Amateur 9-Ball event, Anthony Fisher and Trey Jankowski split the top two prizes after opting out of a final match. Sitting in the hot seat at the time, Fisher claimed the official event title, joining Thomas Fioranelli, the event’s defending champion and James McNulty, who won the inaugural event in 2018. The $200-added Amateur event drew a full field of 64 entrants with Fargo Rates 640 or below. 

Donny Mills was awarded an opening round bye in the Open event and then defeated Mike Steven 7-2 and Anthony Meglino 7-5 to arrive at a winners’ side semifinal against Junior competitor Trenton White. Mills’ opponent in the hot seat and finals, Tony Crosby, opened with a 7-1 victory over Derek Greenwood, and then dispatched Kyle Bova 7-5 and Rhyan Hunter 7-2 to enter his winners’ side semifinal match against Rich Broumpton.

Mills gave up only a single rack to White and advanced to the hot seat match. Crosby joined him after Broumpton broke down his cue when he got behind 0-4. Mills claimed the hot seat with his first of two over Crosby 7-5.

On the loss side, White picked up Nathan Rose, who was working on a four-match, loss-side winning streak that was about to end. He’d most recently eliminated Ray Linares, double hill and James Adams 6-3. Broumpton drew Kyle Bova, who was working on a six-match, loss-side winning streak that was destined to advance a little more.

White advanced to the quarterfinals with a 6-2 victory over Rose and was joined by Bova, who’d defeated Broumpton 6-2. Bova and White battled to double hill before Bova advanced to the semifinals against Crosby. 

Crosby and Bova battled to double hill, as well, before Crosby prevailed for his second shot against Mills. Mills claimed the Open title with a second victory over Crosby 7-4.

Trey Jankowski and Anthony Fisher

Fisher and Jankowski agree to split, so Fisher can continue competing in the Open

It was, reportedly, Trey Jankowski who offered to split the top two prizes in the Amateur event. Sitting in the hot seat, Anthony Fisher would have had to be defeated twice for Jankowski to have won and those two matches would likely have caused Fisher to drop out of his participation in the Open event. Fisher agreed to the split and went on to finish in the tie for 9th in the Open event.

Fisher’s path to the shared winners’ circle went through Todd Wyrick, Cris Baumgart and Bobby Jones, before arriving at a winners’ side quarterfinal match against Jankowski. Fisher won that match 7-2 to face Carlos Gomes in a winners’ side semifinal. Jeremy Sloan, in the meantime, opened his march to the hot seat match by surviving a double hill fight against Lonnie Garcia, and then downing Robbie Cartrette, TJ Fioranelli, and Louie Smith to arrive at his winners’ side semifinal vs. Mike Burke.

Sloan got into the hot seat match with a 7-5 victory over Burke and was joined by Fisher, who’d sent Gomes to the loss side by the same score. Fisher sent Sloan to the semifinals 7-3 and sat in the hot seat waiting, as it turned out, for Jankowski.

On the loss side, Gomes picked up Moe Fattah, who’d recently eliminated Cartrette and Mike Kandy, both 5-2. Burke drew Jankowski, who, following his defeat at the hands of Fisher, had eliminated Trenton White 5-1 and Derrick Santos 5-2. 

Jankowski and Fattah advanced to the quarterfinals; Jankowksi 5-3 over Burke and Fattah 5-2 over Gomes. Jankowski took the subsequent quarterfinals 5-2 over Fattah and then dropped Sloan in the semifinals 5-3. The decision to split was made and Fisher, with the official victory in his pocket, returned to pursue what turned out to be his tie-for-ninth-place finish in the Open event.

In addition to the regular payouts for the top 16 players in the Amateur event. Two women ended up splitting $40 for being the highest finishing females in the event. Margie Soash and Jessica Human both finished in the eight-way tie for 17th place.

Event coordinator Carrie Vetrono thanked Rocco ‘Rocky’ McElroy and his Capone’s staff, as well as all of the players for “making the event enjoyable.” The next event at Capone’s, scheduled for the weekend of October 10-11, will be one of three venue qualifiers for a December 19 finale. The $300-added ($400 with 40+ entrants) 9-ball event is an Open Handicapped event with varied entry fees, dependent on a player’s handicap, from Open/Pro down to C players. For further information, you can reach Vetrono at Capone’s.  

Bova and Linares win Big Dawg Scotch Doubles event on Sunshine State Pro Am Tour

(l to r): Bobby Garza, Mike Griffin, Kyle Bova and Raymond Linares

Event donates goods and money to Hurricane Relief effort for Bahamas
It was a previously scheduled event on the Sunshine State Pro Am calendar, which became an opportunity for the Del Rios, owners of Strokers Billiards in Palm Harbor, FL to contribute to the relief efforts organized for the victims of Hurricane Dorian’s wrath in the Bahamas. The $500-added Big Dawg Battle of the Billiards Scotch Doubles event, held on the weekend of September 7-8 drew 29 teams of two to Strokers.
“We had players from all over the state attend,” said co-tour director Janene Phillips. “From Miami to Jacksonville.”
Represented at the event were Stroker’s Bar & Grill, Boulevard Billiards, Uncle Waldo’s, Fat Cats, Rack’s Billiards and Sports Bar, Brewlands and Park Ave Billiards, among others. All responded to a campaign organized by Lyshia Westbrook-Del Rio. A flyer was produced that announced a “Hurricane Dorian Bahamas Disaster Relief” effort, soliciting a variety of non-perishable items, like canned goods, pre-packaged dry goods, toiletries, batteries and flashlights to name just a few. Donations were accepted for a week, and all those who donated were offered a free drink.
“We just happened to have a stop during her crusade,” Phillips explained, “so we wanted to be a part of it.”
“Between the 50/50 and player auction, we were able to donate $321,” she added, “plus all the donations that everyone brought in.”
There was, of course, a pool tournament that went along with all of this activity and it was won by the team of Kyle Bova and Raymond Linares, who went undefeated through the field. They advanced to the hot seat match, defeating Justin McNulty and Rolando Aravena 7 -3.
McNulty and Aravena had sent Bobby Garza and “Iron” Mike Griffin to the loss side in the third round of this event. Garza and Griffin won five on the loss side, that included wins over Sam Kantar and Dave Kennedy, as well as Trey Jankowski and Steve Knoll, both 5-1. They also had a successful 5-3 rematch against McNulty and Aravena in the semifinals that gave them a shot at Bova and Linares in the hot seat.
Bova and Linares, though, completed their undefeated run. They downed Garza and Griffin 7-2 to claim the Big Dawg Battle of the Billiards Scotch Doubles event and contributed to relief efforts for the Bahamas.
Tour directors Janene Phillips and Bobby Garza thanked the Del Rios “for their continuous support and generosity, not only for the pool scene, but for the community, as well.” They also thanked sponsors Predator Cues, Diamond Billiard Products, Kamui, Stitch it to Me Embroidery and Cyclop Pool Balls. The next stop on the Sunshine State Pro Am Tour, scheduled for October 5-6, will be a $1,000-added Amateur event, hosted by Brewlands North in Lakeland, FL.

Sunshine State Pro Am holds inaugural Scotch Doubles event – Battle of the Billiards

(l to r): Joe Zinkhan, Tim Baron, Joselito Martinez & Marcos Burgos

Martinez and Burgos down Baron and Zinkhan to claim inaugural title
Looking to create a little friendly competition among the multiplicity of pool rooms in Florida, Sunshine State Pro Am Tour directors Janene Phillips and Bobby Garza launched an inaugural event called Battle of the Billiards Big Dawg Scotch Doubles on the weekend of Oct. 27-28 at Stroker’s Billiards in Palm Harbor, FL. While 19 two-player teams participated in the $500-added, Scotch Doubles event, not all were sponsored by pool rooms. It is Phillips’ and Garza’s hope that as the event progresses in its annual schedule, more and more rooms will opt to send players to compete.
This first year’s winners (Joselito Martinez and Marcos Burgos) and runner-ups (Tim Baron and Joe Zinkhan) were independent teams. The two teams played three times, vying for the title. Baron and Zinkhan got into the hot seat, but Martinez and Burgos came back from the semifinals to defeat them in a true double elimination final.
Their first match, battling for the hot seat, followEd Martinez and Burgos’ 7-4 victory over the team of Les Duffy and Anthony Fisher, sponsored by Don Kreischer’s Boulevard Billiards. Baron and Zinkhan, meanwhile, faced off against Larry Wathal’s team from Brewlands (Dale Stanley and Mubarak Suleiman) and defeated them 7-5. Baron and Zinkhan claimed the hot seat 7-5 over Martinez and Burgos and waited on their return from the semifinals.
On the loss side, Duffy and Fisher picked up Sam Kantar and David Jacobs from Boynton Billiards, as Stanley and Mubarak drew the team of Trey Jankowski and Mitch Nelson. Both matches finished at 5-3, advancing Kantar/Jacobs and Jankowski/Nelson to the quarterfinals.
Kantar and Jacobs won the quarterfinal match by the same 5-3 score and then, in the semifinals, were defeated by that same score by Martinez and Burgos, who earned themselves a second, and as it turned out, third shot at Baron and Zinkhan in the hot seat.
Martinez and Burgos took the opening set of the true double elimination final 7-4. In a shortened race to 5 in the second set, Martinez and Burgos won again 5-3 to claim the inaugural Battle of the Billiards Big Dawg Scotch Doubles title.
Tour directors Phillips and Garza thanked Jose Del Rio and his staff at Stroker’s Billiards for hosting the event, as well as the owners of all of the venues who sponsored teams, including Stroker’s (which sponsored two teams), Capone’s, Trick Shots (Orlando, FL), Park Avenue Billiards, and the rest of the teams mentioned in the narrative above. They also thanked sponsors Cyclops Balls, Diamond, and AZBilliards.
The next regular stop on the Sunshine State Pro Am Tour, scheduled for the weekend of Nov. 17-18, will be the amateur-only, $1,000-added Sunshine State Pro Am 10-Ball Bar Box Championships, to be hosted by Rack’s Billiards in Sanford, FL. 

Kennedy comes from the loss side to win second straight J. Pechauer SE Open 9-Ball stop

(l to r) Amateur winners Bill Bloom, Miscue Lounge Owner Ricky Martin & Che Mvros

Boom goes undefeated to capture Amateur title
On Saturday, August 19, Tommy Kennedy, tour director of the J. Pechauer Southeast Open 9-Ball Tour, chalked up his second straight victory on the tour. Following his victory a week earlier at Uncle Waldo's Billiards in Daytona Beach, in which he followed a hot seat loss with a finals victory, Kennedy and the tour visited the Miscue Lounge in Fort Myers and repeated that process in the Bob and Brad Martin Memorial Tournament. Stephen Richmond sent him to the semifinals in this most recent, $600-added event that drew a short field of 14 entrants, but Kennedy came back to win a decisive victory in the finals.
In a $400-added Amateur event that drew 34 entrants on Sunday, August 20, Bill Bloom downed separate opponents in the hot seat (Antti Matilla) and finals (Che Mrvos) to claim the amateur title.
Kennedy's path in the Open event went through Randy Epperson in a winners' side semifinal, as Richmond battled Keith Lennox. Kennedy got into the hot seat match with a 9-4 win over Epperson and was joined by Richmond, who'd sent Lennox over 9-5. Richmond claimed the hot seat and his last win of the event 9-4 over Kennedy and waited on his return.
On the loss side, Epperson picked up Antti Matilla, who'd gotten by Anthony G. and John Deek to reach him. Lennox drew Glenn Olson, who'd defeated James R. and Jimmy Clay. Lennox locked up in a double hill fight that he eventually won against Olson, and in the quarterfinals, met up with Epperson, who'd eliminated Matilla 7-2.
Epperson downed Lennox 7-3 in those quarterfinals, but was defeated, same score, by Kennedy in the semifinals. Kennedy got his second shot at Richmond and took full advantage, downing him 11-4 in the finals to claim his second straight SE Open 9-Ball title.
In the Amateur event, Bill Bloom advanced to the hot seat match with a double hill win over Chris Hall in one winners' side semifinal, while Antti Matilla defeated Billy McBride 6-4 to join him. Bloom claimed the hot seat 6-4.
On the loss side, Hall picked up Trey Jankowski, who'd just defeated Eddie Green 4-1 in the event's first money round. McBride drew Che Mrvos, who'd eliminated Eric Huddleston 4-1.
Jankowski and Mrvos advanced to the quarterfinals over Hall and McBride, by the same 4-1 score. A double hill battle in those quarterfinals advanced Mrvos to the semifinals, where he defeated Matilla 4-1 for a shot at Bloom in the hot seat. Bloom completed his undefeated run with a 9-5 victory over Mrvos in the finals.
Kennedy, as tour director, thanked the ownership and staff at Miscue Lounge, as well as title sponsor  J. Pechauer Custom Cues, Mueller Recreational Products, Simonis Cloth, Billiard Buzz, and Chris and Israel Hightower (Cue Man Billiard Products).

Torres takes first Poison Title

Jose Ybarra, Tony Crosby and Carlos Torres

Stroker’s Billiards Palm Harbor, Fl hosted the latest Poison Cues tour event. 30 players showed up for the$1000 Added Amateur one day event which was held Fathers day weekend, 6,16,2012.

Carlos Torres would prove to be the man to beat, as he made his way to the hotseat with strong wins over Lee Holland 7-4, Tim Baron 7-3, Jake Nauman 7-5, Trey Jankowski 7-3 which he followed up with a hard fought 7-4 win over Brett Lykins to take the Hotseat.

While all this was going on Jose Ybarra was running riot on the one loss side, after taking a 7-4 loss to Nathan Rose, Ybarra would go onto defeat Marty Linzy 5-2, Dave Ross 5-1, Paul Mullins 5-4, Jake Jacobson 5-2, Trey Jankowski 5-4, Lee Holland 5-1 and then another strong win over Brett Lykins 5-4 to set up a final match with Torres.

Carlos Torres looked like he was going to cruise his way to the win as he stormed out to a 6-2 lead, Ybarra had other ideas as he grinded his way back into the match rack by rack and eventually tying it up at 6-6, unfortunately for Ybarra a scratch in the last game would give Torres the chance he had been waiting for as he calmly ran the last few balls to take down his first Title on the Poison Tour.

We would like to thank Stroker’s Billiards for hosting another great event and all the players that showed up. Also our title Sponsors Poison Cues for supply some of the best hitting cues on the market.

The Poison tour will be at Cuephoria Billiards Café in Orlando July 28th-29th Orlando always draws a big crowd so this should be another great weekend of pool. If you would like to see some of the matches from this and past events visit for more info you can also sign up to receive emails with the latest news.

Kennedy comes back from semifinals to win first stop on his 2012 Tiger Southeast Open 9-Ball Tour

Tommy Kennedy likes to play from behind. He doesn’t recommend it as a strategic option, but for him, being behind in a tournament or individual match tends to focus him in ways that large leads don’t.  He utilized this preference to return from the semifinals of the first 2012 stop on his Tiger Southeast Open 9-Ball tour, on Sunday, January 8, and defeat hot seat occupant, Mike Davis, who’d sent him to the semifinals. The $5,000-added event drew 47 entrants to Veteran’s Billiards in Port Charlotte, FL.

From among the winners’ side final four, Kennedy sent Danny Green west with a commanding 11-1 victory that included seven 9-balls on the break (which failed to count, since they failed to enter either the side pocket or the corner pockets from which he broke).  Davis, in the meantime, prevailed in a double hill battle that sent Stoney Stone to the loss side. In their first of two, Davis defeated Kennedy 11-9, and sat in the hot seat awaiting his return.

Green moved over to pick up Justin Hall, who’d defeated Steve Giedraitisz 9-7 and Han Berber in a double hill match. Stone drew Josh Lewis, who’d gotten by Trey Jankowski 9-5 and Ray Linares 9-6. Green and Stone made short work of their first, loss-side opponents; Green eliminating Hall 9-6, Stone defeating Lewis 9-2. 

Stone defeated Green 9-4 in the quarterfinals that followed, and then fell to Kennedy by the same score in the semifinals. Kennedy’s ‘plan’ (coming from behind) was in full swing.

Davis opened the single race to 13 finals with two in a row, and Kennedy responded with four racks that gave him the lead. Davis tied it up, and Kennedy responded with four to go up 8-4. Davis came right back with four of his own to tie things at 8-8, but they’d prove to be the last four games he’d win. Kennedy won the next five, with a couple of ‘break and runs’ for good measure to secure the event victory.

“When I’m either even or down, I play better, because I bear down more,” said Kennedy the next day. “When it got to 8-8, I figured, OK, it’s a race to five now, and I just took advantage of the opportunities when they presented themselves.”

At the conclusion of the tournament, Mike Davis was presented with a Tiger Southeast Open 9-Ball ‘Greatest Attitude’ award, which added a trophy with that achievement inscribed on it to his second place winnings

“He was really happy about the award,” said Kennedy. “He’d told me that he’d gotten trophies for winning tournaments before, but never anything like that.”