Tatum wins by a nose over Maikee on the GSBT

Shannon Daulton, BR Tatum, John Maikee, and Robert (manager at Classic Billiards)

It was like a photo finish in an exciting horse race.  The eventual winner of the Great Southern  Billiard Tour's stop on the weekend of August 21-22, B.R. Tatum, was sitting in the hot seat, awaiting his final opponent, and watching as a ‘horse'  behind him rounded the final turn, headed for home and picking up speed. That ‘horse' – John Maikee – had broken from the gate slowly and was working from the one-loss side after the tournament's opening round.  Maikee almost caught him, winning nine straight to catch up, but Tatum hung on to win in a double hill, second set of a true double elimination final. The $1,500-added event, sponsored by Nick Varner Cues and Cases and Andy Gilbert Custom Cues, drew 30 entrants to Classic Billiards in Conyers, GA. 

From among the winners' side final four, Tatum used a handicap advantage to defeat Jordan Grubb 7-7, as Clint McCullough was dominating his match versus Jack Fernandez 10-1. Tatum got into the hot seat with another handicap victory, 7-8, over McCullough, who needed to reach nine. 

Meanwhile, Maikee was on his nine-match romp back to the finals. With three behind him, Maikee defeated Jeff Hooks 9-8 and Dave Shadden 9-2 to pick up Fernandez, coming over from the winners' side final four. Grubb drew Horace Goodwin, who'd defeated Jamie Lowery 10-6 and James Bryson 9-2 to reach him. Maikee got into the quarterfinals with a 9-6 win over Fernandez. Goodwin joined him after defeating Grubb 9-8.   

With six down and three to go, Maikee got into the semifinals with a 9-7 victory over Goodwin. With McCullough needing to reach 10 in those semifinals, Maikee passed the last ‘horse' in front of him with a 9-8 win and set his sights on the leader. In the opening set of the true double elimination final, Maikee showed every sign that he was not only going to catch Tatum, but pass him. He won that opening set 9-2 and turned his sights to the finish line. The ‘horses' traded the lead back and forth to double hill, before Tatum prevailed, winning his first GSBT event.