Ochoa Strikes Gold in Texas State Open
Texas Open 9-Ball Championship / Round Rock, TX
by InsidePOOL Staff
Young gun Sylver Ochoa came out on top of a field of 113 to win the Texas Open 9-Ball Championship over Rafael Martinez. Held September 1-3 and hosted by G-Cue Billiards in Round Rock, TX, this event brought out some of the area’s toughest competitors.
With this race-to-9, double-elimination format, Ochoa breezed through to the hot seat match, where he met Martinez for the first time. Though Martinez held an early lead in this match and was up 4-3, Ochoa then broke and ran five racks in a row to reach the hill. Martinez scrabbled for one more game before Ochoa crossed the finish line, sending Martinez to do battle in the one-loss side.
Former U.S. Open champ Gabe Owen was doing well in the west side, defeating best friend and another former Open champion Jeremy “Double J” Jones home with fifth place after their hill-hill match. Owen went on to play Maryland’s Mike Davis, winning 9-7. Against Martinez, though, Owen seemed to run out of steam, and Martinez whipped by with a 9-3 win to earn a rematch with Ochoa. In the finals, Martinez made some uncharacteristic errors, and Ochoa was able to achieve a 6-2 lead. He never looked back from there, winning the final match 9-5.
In the ladies’ division, which attracted 22 entrants, Kyu Yi was defeated by Jennifer Kraber in the hot seat match 7-2. Yi then went on to meet Cristina De La Garza in the semifinals, which was a close match that saw the score knotted at 5-all before Yi won the next two racks. In the double-elimination finals rematch, Yi handily won the first set 7-2 against Kraber. But in the second and deciding set, Kraber led throughout until Yi tied the score at 5-all, at which point she collected the next two racks as well to win 7-5.
Cristina De La Garza
Gordon Van Der Veer