Lapena Rocks the Blaze Billiard Tour
Blaze 9-Ball Tour / Rockaway, NJ
by Jose Burgos
Hosted by Rockaway Billiards in Rockaway, NJ, the April 14-15 installment of the Blaze 9-Ball Tour was joined by a strong field of 40 players. Santos Sambajon Jr., Mike Miller, Bristol Bob, and Ignacio Chavez were a few of those who came to play, but Al Lapena was the only one left standing at the end.
Sambajon led the top half of the bracket, notching wins over Scott Evans 7-1, Gorden R. 7-3, Wali Muhammad 7-6, and Adam Keilar 7-4. Fighting through the bottom half of the bracket, Bristol Bob scored victories over Paul Action 7-1, Jim McManus 7-4, Dave Schutte 7-4, Carmen Lombardo 7-5, and Chavez 7-4.
Sambajon and Bob faced off to do battle for the hot seat, and though at first the match went back and forth, Sambajon was able to pull away late and win 7-4. Lapena, having suffered an early loss, now struggled through the west side of the chart to reach the quarterfinal match. There he vanquished Chavez 7-3 to advance and defeated Bob 7-3 as well to reach fellow countryman Sambajon in the finals. A close match ensued, but when all was said and done, Lapena took home the title with a 9-7 victory.
1st Al Lapena
2nd Santos Sambajon Jr.
3rd Bristol Bob
4th Ignacio Chavez
5th Mike Miller
7th Steve Lillis
9th Mike Young