Huang Wins AWBT Opener, Spot in Pro Event
By InsidePOOL Staff
The Arizona Women’s Billiard Tour kicked off their tenth season on January 22-23 at Metro Sportz Bar in Phoenix, AZ. A competitive field of 31 ladies signed in for a chance at first place and a paid entry into a WPBA event.
Newcomer Melinda Huang turned heads early with her smart play and hot stroke. Huang, a Los Angeles native, made the trip via Greyhound to compete in the weekend tournament.
Huang breezed through her matches to reach the hot seat against Tucson native Anne Gray, where she proceeded to the finals with yet another win. Gray gathered herself in the semifinals and edged out a tough 7-5 win over Susan Williams to force the rematch with Huang in the finals.
In true double-elimination format, Gray had to defeat Huang in two straight sets to notch the victory. The first set was close right from the start, and the two ladies battled to hill-hill. Gray had the advantage early in the final game of the first set but misfired on the 5 ball, leaving Huang a chance to run out the rack. She nailed down the first couple of balls but left herself a tough leave on the 8. Huang paused and refocused her shot, and she put the 8 right in the pocket. She followed up with the 9 ball to earn the victory and the paid entry into the West Coast Classic at the Viejas Casino in Alpine, CA, on March 30.
1st Melinda Huang $326
2nd Anne Gray $221
3rd Susan Williams $163
4th Tina Pawloski $116
5th Susan Mello, Michelle Trevino $75
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