Youngest Players Claim 1st and 2nd at NCPT’s Tour Stop #1

On March 26, the North Central Pool Tour (NCPT) held its inaugural tournament at Dave Coles’ Carom Room, 614 E. Grand Ave. in Beloit, Wisconsin. The NCPT is a regional tour sanctioned through the North American Pool Tour (www.playnapt.com). It runs women’s 9-ball tournaments throughout Wisconsin, Iowa, and Northern Illinois. Players earn points at every stop toward invites to NAPT Division I pro tournaments and the Division II regional championships. 
 
Despite being a holiday weekend, 17 women came out to vie for the NCPT’s first tour-stop win. The field included veterans of the game as well as a few young talents. Women traveled from as far away as Minnesota; Peoria, Illinois; and from all over Wisconsin to play 9-ball on the Carom Room’s well-maintained 7-foot Diamond tables.
 
The action started off with some decisive victories from April Larson (MN), Taylor Hansen (MN), Vanessa Hood (IL), and Anna Isabel Tulauan (IA). Larson, Hood, Tulauan, and Donya Bundy (WI) would prove their skills deep into the winner’s side. 
 
One of the most anticipated matchups played out in the third round on the A side. The youngest players in the field, April Larson (15 years) and Taylor Hansen (17 years), met on the streaming TV table. After a close battle, Larson finally notched the win 6-5. She then cruised to the hot seat with commanding wins over Bundy (6-1) and Tulauan (6-1).
 
Not to be outdone, Hansen fought her way back through the B side for a coveted rematch with Larson in the finals. The young shooters traded games back and forth, keeping the score all tied up. But Hansen finally pulled down the win 6-4 to take the first set.
 
The second set would prove to be just as gritty early on. The ladies traded wins, keeping the score close again through 2-2. But in game 5, Larson missed the 8 to give Hansen a quick 2-ball out. Hansen took advantage of the win and kept Larson at bay for the rest of the match. The final tally: Hansen 6-4 over Larson. 
 
The overall  tournament results were:
1st $305 Taylor Hansen (MN)
2nd $185 April Larson (MN)
3rd $115 Anna Isabel Tulauan (IA)
4th $70 Donya Bundy (WI)
5th-6th $45 Jeannie Mallicoat (IL) - Vanessa Hood (IL)
 
A special thank-you to Dave Coles of the Carom Room for hosting this event and for adding $170 to the total purse.
 
Upcoming NCPT stops:
April 16, 2016 - NAPT DIVISION I PRO TOURNAMENT QUALIFIER EVENT, Shooters, Grayslake, IL
July 9, 2016 - UP TO $2,000 ADDED!, Big Dog Billiards, Des Moines, IA
September 17, 2016 - The Rock Sports Bar & Grill, Sun Prairie, WI
 
For more information about the NCPT’s tournament formats and upcoming events, visit Facebook.com/northcentralpooltour, email northcentralpooltour@gmail.com, or call Kelly Nickl at 715-451-8901.