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Ashley Benoit Wins Inaugural “Women In Pool” Championship

Ashley Benoit

A full field of 64 players from CT, RI, MA, NJ, NY, PA and several other states came together for two reasons over the weekend of September 10th – 11th at Yale Billiards in Wallingford, CT for the Women In Pool Inaugural Women’s 9-Ball Championship. 

The field was made up of skill levels ranging from APA 3’s all the way up to Fargo 650 players for this non-handicapped event. Connecticut’s Ashley Nicole Benoit may not have had the highest ranking of all of the competitors, but she had the biggest drive to win as she scored impressive wins over Dawn Fox, Lindsey Bazinet, Stacie Bourbeau and Tina Malm on her way to the hot-seat. 

On the one loss side, Pennsylvania’s Rachel Walters bounced back nicely from her loss to Malm on the winners side. Walters had wins over Bazinet, Alyssa Solt and Malm to earn her place in the finals. Walters would have to settle for second on this weekend, as Benoit was unstoppable on her way to a 7-3 win in the first set of the finals. 

While all of the ladies in attendance were there with hopes to perform well in the tournament, event director Gloria Jean explained that the ladies were there for another reason. “In my 15 years of being a Tour Director, I have never seen a more vibrant, tenacious, happy, yet competitive group of women smile so much!” said Jean. “Women met like-minded Women with the same passion for the sport, the desire to improve, hone their skills, and relate to one another on a personal level. Many walked away with not just spectacular payouts but new friends to bond with and a once in a lifetime experience.”

Jean’s Women In Pool project was born from conversations on her podcast, where she has collaborated with such notables as Kelly Fisher, Allison Fisher, Joann Mason Parker, LoreeJon Ogonowski-Brown, Ewa Laurance, Mary Kenniston and many others. Jean created the project at the start of the year and says she has always wanted a tournament like this to be a part of it. 

More information can be found online at www.facebook.com/womeninpool121 where fans can find out about the entire project. 

Jean thanked the great staff at Yale Billiards, as well as her tournament director Ty Speedwell, Sharkstream for streaming the event, Bobby Hilton for refereeing, Joe Raccio, Curtis Rohrer, Crystal Atkinson, Andy Now and all of her sponsors, Iwan Simonis Cloth, Aramith Premium Balls, N’ The Zone Sportswear, Navigator Chalk, Dragon Billiards Instruction, Harriman Real Estate, Bulletproof Break Tips, Pool League Association, NM Billiards Sales and Service, Narragansett Brewery, Outsville Templates, PoolDawg, McConnaughy’s Irish Pickles and J. Pechauer Cues.

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Pavao goes undefeated on J. Pechauer Ride the 9 Tour

Ty Speedwell took Danny Pavao to double hill twice, but Pavao came out on top both times to claim the May 19 stop on the J. Pechauer Ride the 9 Tour. The $1,000-added event drew 27 entrants to Bo's Billiards in Warwick, RI.

 
They met first among the winners' side final four, with Pavao sending Speedwell west in their first of two double hill matches. Bill Cote defeated Bill O'Mara double hill, as well, to meet Pavao in the hot seat match. Pavao claimed the hot seat from Cote 5-1 and waited on Speedwell's return.
 
Speedwell moved over and picked up Tim Perry, who'd defeated Ranulf Tamba in a double hill match, and Kerry McAuliffe 5-2. O'Mara drew Choneyi Tenzin, who'd gotten by Charles Matarazzo 8-2 (Matarazzo racing to 4), and Roarke Dickson 6-1. Speedwell embarked on his three-match march back to the finals with a 5-2 win over Perry, as Tenzin was busy shutting out O'Mara.
 
The tour veteran quarterfinal went double hill before Speedwell prevailed to face Bill Cote. Speedwell shut Cote out in the semifinals for a second chance against Pavao. Pavao and Speedwell locked up in their second double hill match, and Pavao prevailed again to claim the event title.
 

Oliviera goes undefeated to take Viking Cues New England 9-Ball Challenge in Providence, RI

Nelson Oliviera had to get by Joey Dupuis twice to capture the New England 9-Ball Challenge on Saturday, April 28. He did just that, sending Dupuis west from among the winners’ side final four, and when Dupuis came back, he defeated him a second time in the finals. The event drew 45 entrants to Rhode Island Billiards, Bar & Bistro in North Providence, RI.

Once he’d dispatched Dupuis west 9-4, Oliviera turned to face Tom McGonagle in the battle for the hot seat. McGonagle had just sent Ted Psarros over 9-3. Oliviera got into the hot seat with a 9-3 win over McGonagle and waited for what turned out to be Dupuis’ return.

First up for Dupuis on his three-match march to the finals was Kevin Sun, who’d defeated David Murphy 7-2, and Randy LaBonte 7-5. Psarros had the misfortune of running into Steven Roy, who’d lost his opening round match versus Ty Speedwell, and was in the midst of a five-match winning streak that would get him into the quarterfinals. Roy defeated Marty Herman and Rich Senna, both 7-5 to reach Psarros. Dupuis eliminated Sun 9-5, and Roy ended his five-match, loss-side streak with a shutout over Psarros.

Dupuis, in turn, ended Roy’s streak with a 9-5, quarterfinal victory. He followed that up with a 9-4, semifinal victory over McGonagle, which gave him a second chance against Oliviera. The wait aside, Oliviera picked up right where he’d left off. He allowed Dupuis only a single rack in the only set necessary to capture the event title.

Rhode Island Billiards, Bar & Bistro owner Anthony Costanzo thanked Viking Cues, Jim Beam and Budweiser for their assistance in sponsoring this event.

Bauccio goes undefeated to take J. Pechauer Ride the 9 Tour stop in RI

Kevin Bauccio chalked up his first 2012 event victory with an undefeated showing at the J. Pechauer Ride the 9 Tour stop on Sunday, March 11. The event drew 28 entrants to Bo’s Billiards in Warwick, RI.

From among the winners’ side final four, Bauccio faced Bill Bassi, as his eventual finals opponents, Scott Reynolds, squared off against Roarke Dickson. Bauccio sent Bassi west 6-3, and got into the hot seat match against Dickson, who’d defeated Reynolds 5-4. Bauccio got into the hot seat with a 5-4 victory over Dickson, and waited for Reynolds to complete a three-match streak on the loss side to meet him in the finals.

First up for Reynolds on the loss side was Ty Speedwell, who’d defeated Tony Ruzzano 5-4 and Jeff Darosa 6-3 to reach him. Bassi drew Tim Hoffacker, who’d gotten by Jamie Forcier 4-2 and Bob Mills 4-3. Reynolds dropped Speedwell into the tie for fifth place with a handicapped 5-5 win, and in the quarterfinals, met Hoffacker, who’d ended Bassi’s tournament bid 4-2.

Reynolds then defeated Hoffacker 5-3, to pick up a re-match versus Dickson in the semifinals. He gave up only a single rack against Dickson and moved into the finals against Bauccio. Bauccio gave up only two against Reynolds, completing his undefeated day with a 5-2 win.

Tour director Gloria Magnano thanked the owners and staff at Bo’s Billiards for their hospitality, as well as sponsors J. Pechauer Custom Cues, Cueshark, Mueller’s, Magic Rack (CSI), Narragansett Beer and 9-Ball (The Movie). Next stop on the J. Pechauer Ride the 9 Tour, a $600-added event, is scheduled for April 22 at Snooker’s in Providence, RI. According to Magnano, nearly a third of the field has already registered for this event, and she recommends that interested players should communicate with her (gloriajean71@verizon.net) to assure a spot. 

Wright wins eight on the loss-side to take J. Pechauer Ride the 9 Tour stop

Over his final seven matches on the J.Pechauer Ride the 9 Tour stop on Sunday, February 12, David Wright won (on average) over three out of every four games he played. All but two of those matches were recorded on the loss-side of the tournament bracket. The final two were the two sets of a double elimination final, in which he defeated Mike Selig to capture the event title. The $600-added event, named in the honor of Cleiton Rocha, drew 54 entrants (including Rocha) to Snookers, in Providence, RI.

Wright, a C+ player, was moved to the west bracket early in this one; by Dave Bowden, who eventually followed him over, though he managed to dodge Wright’s revenge, when he was knocked out during the matches that decided the tie for seventh place. Moving among the winners’ side final four were Selig, Jordan Emerson, Rob Ragusa and Billy Lanna. Selig sent Emerson to the loss side with a handicapped 4-4 win, as Ragusa did likewise to Lanna 3-3. Selig got into the hot seat with a shutout over Ragusa.

It was Emerson who moved over and ran into a streaking Wright, already with five notches on his loss-side belt, including wins over Bill Bassi and Josh Lerner, both 5-2. Lanna picked up Ty Speedwell, who’d defeated Josh Gormly 5-1 and shut out Bowden to reach him. Wright shut out Emerson to move into the quarterfinals and was joined by Lanna, who’d downed Speedwell 5-2.

Wright had six, loss-side wins behind him at this point. He chalked up # 7 with a 4-2 victory over Lanna, and completed his trip to the finals with a 5-2 victory over Ragusa in the semifinals. Over the next 13 games, which comprised the two sets of the double elimination final, Wright gave up only two racks (one in each set) over Selig to secure the event victory.

Tour representatives thanked the ownership and staff of Snookers in Providence for their hospitality, as well as new players who joined the tour for this event. They also offered thanks to Narragansett Beer for sponsorship of the event and their contributions to the prize money, as well as co-sponsors J. Pechauer Cues, CueShark, Muellers, and Magic Rack (CSI).