Van Boening Wins US Open 10-Ball Title

Shane Van Boening (Photo courtesy of JP Parmentier)
Shane Van Boening is, once again, your US Open 10-Ball Champion. Van Boening controlled a final matchup with Rodney Morris to earn his second career US Open 10-Ball title at the Rio All Suites Resort and Casino in Las Vegas Nevada on July 22nd. 
Van Boening’s day started on the one loss side, after dropping the hot-seat match to Morris 10-7 on the previous night. After watching Canadian Champion John Morra defeat Rodrigo Geronimo and Skyler Woodward, Van Boening took on Morra in the semi-final match. That match saw a determined Van Boening take an early lead and never look back. Van Boening led the match at 4-1, and fought off multiple comeback attempts by Morra. Morra would never lead in the match and Van Boening ended up winning the match 10-6 to earn his rematch with Morris in the extended, race to thirteen, finals. 
The final match was very different from the hot-seat match on the previous day. While the hot-seat match featured 14 of 17 racks ran after the break, this match saw only 9 post break table runs, out of 21 racks. Both players seemed to struggle with shape on the one ball after the break, and many racks turned into extended battles for control of the one-ball. 
Van Boening held an early two rack lead (at 3-1) and later a three rack lead (at 6-3), but Morris was able to come back and tie the score after both of those early leads. The match turned in Van Boening’s favor for the last time at 9-8, when Morris went for broke on a kick/carom on the 10-ball and missed. Van Boening ran that rack and Morris would not win another game as Van Boening won the match 13-8.
Van Boening indicated after the match that he thought the safety battles and tied up tables played into his advantage. “I’ve been playing bar-tables for 20-25 years now. I know a lot about the in’s and out’s of that game”. Van Boening came with table runs both times that Morris came back to tie the score. He said that those came down to “focusing on the break and making sure I had opportunities afterwards. The most important thing was that I won the lag. That was the important shot.” 
This was only Van Boening’s second major title for the year and he said that was due to a change in priorities for him. “I’ve been trying to lay back a little bit. I’m not traveling as much as I used to. I just realized that I need to do other things in life.” said Van Boening.
[photo id=45107|align=right]One thing that Van Boening will certainly do, is come right back to the tournament arena tomorrow, as he tries to win his second US Open 8-Ball title. That event kicks off Saturday the 23rd, and runs until Monday the 25th. 
With the win, Van Boening moved up one spot on the US Mosconi Cup points list. He overtook Shaun Wilkie for 5th place on the list, with the top four players (Morris, Oscar Dominguez, Mike Dechaine and Skyler Woodward) all remaining in the same places.
Predator is the official cue of the US Open 10-Ball Championship. They are joined by Kamui (the official tip), Cyclop (the official balls), Omega Billiards (the official online store) and Diamond (the official table) as major sponsors of this event.