Tracie Hines Claims First Place Finish

Tracie Hines and Jessica Barnes

Twenty-seven players met at Wally's Billiards & Sportsbar in Lakeland, Florida, on October 28, 2006, for the Ladies Spirit Tour's 8th event. This event was a Player's Choice WPBA Qualifier for the 2007 Season, sponsored by Competition drew players of multi-skill levels from all over Florida, as well as California, North Carolina, Alabama, and Illinois.

By Saturday evening, the field was whittled down to twelve ladies; all with intentions of snagging the Qualifier and a portion of the $2350.00 cash fund. On the one-loss side, Kelly Coyle, Denise Khidirian, Tracie Hines, Emily Duddy, Laura Lindauer, Niki Rasmussen, Crystal McCormick, and Diana Minor were trying to hang on to their second chances, while Sarah Rousey, Jessica Barnes, Debbie Schjodt, and Leslee Davis-Blaikie were battling for that comfortable Queen-of-the-Hill seat. It was Barnes who decided she wanted that seat most, as she sent Rousey to the one-loss side.

After taking a short break from the Tour, Jessica returned with a new mission and demeanor. She defeated Kelly Coyle, Janis Sessions, Denise Khidirian, and Debbie Schjodt – allowing her opponents' scores to reach no more than four games. Her successful match with Rousey was much closer, ending the score with 7-6.

Although WPBA Touring Pro Tracie Hines was moved to the B side after her first match with upcoming Pro Debbie Schjodt, she didn't let it get her down. It seemed as though Tracie just took advantage of the extra matches she had to play to stay alive --- using it as warm-up time. After she quickly eliminated Dianna Lane, Diana Minor, and Crystal McCormick, she once again was faced with Debbie Schjodt. She gave Schjodt a dose of her own medicine with a vengeful elimination score of 7-5 and proceeded to take out Leslee Davis-Blaikie and Sarah Rousey. She never let any of her opponents even win a 6th game. In the end, it was Hines challenging Barnes for the finals.

As the tournament format called for True Double Elimination, it was set that Hines had to beat Barnes two full matches of Races-to-Seven. She took a dominant lead against Barnes 6-1, as Barnes struggled to pull it together. Suddenly, it seemed as though Hines was letting off the drive a little and Barnes found her second wind. With many safety plays and careful navigation of the table, Jessica was able to bring the score to 6-4, but it was just too little too late, and Hines claimed the first match with a final score of 7-4.

The second and final match was much closer, with the players battling to take the lead. Jessica found herself against a new pressure, that of playing in the final match, but she liked the added challenge. On the other hand, Tracie is quite familiar with the finals pressure but seemed to be wearing down from the constant play she had endured while having to plow through the one-loss side earlier in the event. In the end, it was Tracie Hines who brought the score to 7-5, showing that experience does count.

Although Tracie Hines claimed the First Place monies, Jessica Barnes was able to secure the Players Choice Qualifier spot. Congratulations to both! results:
1st – Tracie Hines - $700
2nd – Jessica Barnes - $500 + Qualifier
3rd – Sarah Rousey - $325
4th – Leslee Davis-Blaikie - $225
5/6th – Debbie Schjodt & Emily Duddy - $125
7/8th – Crystal McCormick & Laura Lindauer - $75
9/12th – Denise Khidirian, Niki Rasmussen, Kelly Coyle, & Diana Minor - $50
13/16th – Roberta Case, Jeannie Seaver, Dianna Lane, Janis Sessions
17/24th – Ellen Van Buren, Stephanie Mitchell, Vanessa Seaver, Helene Caukin, Heather Barkley, Libby Blake, Mimi McAndrews, Kelly Jones
25/32nd – Amanda Davidson, Beth Amado, Janice Sellner