Van Boening Wins Turning Stone Classic XXVIII

Shane Van Boening (Photo courtesy of Karl Kantrowitz)
Over the past three years, the Turning Stone Classic has been dominated by Jayson Shaw. Aside from a 7th place finish in January of 2016, Shaw had been unstoppable at this event. Shaw’s five wins were only one behind Johnny Archer’s record of six wins. For the better part of four days, it looked like Shaw would be matching Archer’s record at the 28th running of this event, held August 31st to September 3rd. 
Shaw ran through the first days of this event unbeaten and relatively untested. Heading into his winner’s side final four match with Mika Immonen, Shaw had a combined record of 45 games won and 9 games lost. Immonen put up a tougher fight than any other opponent that Shaw had faced so far, getting to six games before Shaw won the match. 
Matching Shaw’s run through the right side of the board, Shane Van Boening was making his way through the brackets with a tough run of matches against Danny Hewitt, Jeremy Sossei, and a red hot Donnie Mills. Van Boening came back from 8-7 down to defeat Mills 9-8 to earn his place in the hot-seat match. 
The hot-seat match was typical Jayson Shaw, as he raced to an 8-0 lead before defeated Van Boening 9-3. 
The loss to Shaw was only a temporary setback for Van Boening though, as he quickly dispatched Mills a second time by a score of 9-3, and the rematch between Shaw and Van Boening was set. 
The final match started close with both players tied at 1-1, 2-2 and 3-3. From the 3-3 score though, Van Boening took complete control of the match. Racks 7 and 8 saw the two players engage in a safety battle and both racks were won by Van Boening. At the score of 5-3, Van Boening’s break fell into place, and the next time Shaw came to the table he trailed 10-3. A scratch on the break in rack 14 gave Shaw the chance to run a rack and get back to 10-4 down, but he then returned the favor and scratched on his break in rack 15. From there, Shaw seemed to lose his drive and Van Boening cruised to a 13-4 win and his third Turning Stone Classic Win.