His favorite game might still be one-pocket, but Gabe Owen has been making a pretty big impression playing 9-ball lately. Recent winner of the Corpus Christi Classic Open 9-Ball event for the second time, many-time victor on the Midwest 9-Ball Tour, Texas State Open and Kansas State Open champion, and two-time runner-up at JOB Billiard’s Music City Classic, Owen is only 26 years old but has been playing for over 10 years.
“Home” for Owen is originally in Wichita, KS, but he move to Tulsa, OK< when he was 17 years old and on his own. He went back to his hometown for a year to help his father make pool cues, but he says that his father had little to do with his decision to pursue pool as a career. Owen recalls, “One day when I was 14, my cousin and I went down to the game room and they were playing a dollar a game, and I’d go down there every day and play a dollar, two dollars a game all day long on the bar tables … I love it. And when I didn’t have money, I’d just practice.”
Around 17 or 18, Owen started taking pool playing seriously. He began hitting the McDermott stops, the regional events, and the independent tournaments. It didn’t take long before he was making his presence known all over the Midwest. Now one of the most feared “young guns” either on the road or on tournament charts throughout the pro scene, Owen’s appearance belies his reputation. The tall, baby-faced blond with a midwestern drawl gives no allusion to the fact that he is a deadly opponent who plays all games extremely well. According to Owen, the only player he worries about now is Johnny Archer. “I’ve never beaten Johnny. I’m gonna beat him one of these days, but he’s tough. He’s Johnny.”
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