Top Amateurs Crowned U.S. Amateur Champions

Raymond Linares

LAKE SAINT LOUIS, MO (November 16, 2010) — The top amateur poolplayers in the country came to Strokers in Tampa, Fla., in early November to compete for the coveted U.S. Amateur Championship title.

Amy Chen of Norcross, Ga., is the 2010 U.S. Amateur Women's Champion after defeating Kelly Cavanaugh of Orlando, Fla., 9-8.  It's Chen's second U.S. Amateur Championship title after winning it back in 2008.  The hill-hill battle was a nail-biter, much to the delight of a large audience of spectators.

The match opened in the 8-Ball set, with Cavanaugh taking the first game.  Chen then took control of the 8-Ball set, winning the next five games for a 5-1 lead.  The switch to the 9-Ball set brought a change in the momentum, as Cavanaugh battled back winning the first five games and taking a 6-5 lead.  Chen then took the next two games for a one game advantage.  The two then traded games back and forth over the next three, leaving one game to decide the championship. 

In the 9th and final game, Chen perfectly executed a 3-9 combo to win the match.  Chen becomes only the second player in the Women's Division to capture the title twice.

Chen moves on to compete in the WPBA U.S. Open next year.  Cavanaugh finished as the Runner-up.  Finishing in 3rd Place was Dana Aft of Atlanta, Ga.

Raymond Linares of Miami, Fla., is the 2010 U.S. Amateur Champion in the Men's Division after a 11-7 victory over former champion David Rowell of Birmingham, Ala.  Linares went undefeated throughout the three-day tournament, his first U.S. Amateur Championship tournament.

Linares saved perhaps his best play for the finals against Rowell.  The match began in the 9-Ball set, with Linares winning four of the first five games.  Rowell closed the gap with wins in games 6 and 7, but Linares continued his surge, and led 8-5 as the players switched to 8-Ball.  Rowell took the first game of the 8-Ball set to pull within two, but Linares came right back to take the next two, putting himself on-the-hill. 

Rowell avoided elimination by winning the fourth game of the set, but Linares' momentum was too much to overcome at that point as he put away the match 11-7. 

Linares moves on to compete in the U.S. Open pro tournament next year.  Rowell's Runner-up finish was his highest at a U.S. Amateur Championship since he won the event in 2000.

Defending champion Brian Parks of Bakersfield, Calif, finished in 3rd Place, losing only to both Linares and Rowell.  Nicholas Conner of Portland, Maine finished in 4th.  Scott Ruttinger of Yulee, Fla., and Richard Andrews of Harvest, Ala., tied for 5th Place.

The 2010 U.S. Amateur Championship, produced and conducted by the American Poolplayers Association (APA), was held at Strokers in Tampa, Fla., Nov. 5-7.  Preliminary qualifying rounds were held throughout the country in mid-Sept., with more than 1,500 players attempting to qualify.

Chen and Linares competed with the nation's most highly skilled amateur poolplayers who were all vying for the U.S. Amateur Championship title.  The Men's Division consisted of 128 players, while the Women's Division featured 30 players.  As Champions, Chen and Linares will return next year to defend their coveted titles.
The U.S. Amateur Championship is a double elimination tournament that offers the nation's top amateur players the opportunity to showcase their skills through a combination of 8-Ball and 9-Ball matches, in the only APA event that does not use The Equalizer® handicap system.
The APA, based in Lake Saint Louis, Mo., sanctions the world's largest amateur pool league, known as the APA Pool League throughout the United States, and as the Canadian Pool League in Canada.  Nearly 270,000 members compete in weekly 8-Ball and 9?Ball league play.  The APA is generally recognized as the Governing Body of Amateur Pool, having established the official rules, championships, formats and handicap systems for the sport of amateur billiards.
The APA produces three major tournaments each year—the APA National Team Championships, the APA National Singles Championships and the U.S. Amateur Championship—that, together, pay out nearly $1.5 Million in cash and prizes annually!
The APA and its championships are sponsored by Aramith, Action Cues and Pool Dawg.
For complete coverage of the U.S. Amateur Championship, visit