Schmidt and Lac Take First at Diamond Billiards

Schmidt and Lac Take First at Diamond Billiards
Tiger Tour / Midlothian, VA
by InsidePOOL Staff
The Tiger Tour was held at Diamond Billiards in Midlothian, VA, for the first time May 31-June 1, where the room added a total of $2500 to the event with the help of Jagermeister and a cue donated by John Schmidt’s sponsor, OB1, and the sponsors of the Tiger Tour. Billiard professional John Schmidt took top honors in the open division, while My-Hanh Lac took the ladies’ event.
The open field was a strong one, with 41 players coming out to prevent Chau from taking his fourth tournament in a row and 20 ladies attending for the title of Virginia State champion. Saturday’s line-up included several of the top points leaders of the tour, along with some new faces from the Richmond area.
The surprise visitor from Florida was pro player Schmidt, currently sponsored by the host pool room. Schmidt’s tournament run didn’t allow a single player to reach above four games. He fought his way through to the final four in the winners’ bracket, where he dispatched of David Hunt 9-3 to face Chau. This was a much-anticipated match, but Schmidt sent Chau to the one-loss side with a 9-4 win.
His wins Saturday included Dave White 9-3, Larry Kressel 9-4, and his final match for Saturday against Dustin Paris ended 9-3, taking him into Sunday, where he would meet Richmond local David Hunt in the final four of the winners’ bracket.
After taking an early loss Saturday to Paul Helms, Brandon Shuff began plugging away to get back to the top. He struggled through the one-loss side to best Larry Kressel 7-0 and advance to the semifinals against Chau. He bested Chau a stunning 7-1 to meet Schmidt. The finals weren’t too evenly matched, for Schmidt walked away with the first-place prize after defeating Shuff in an 11-0 victory.
The ladies’ division Sunday saw 20 players vying for the title of Virginia State champion and the much-coveted spot at the WPBA 2008 U.S. Open. With a surprise visit from Virginia’s Governor Gilmore, the ladies were really in the spotlight.
Newcomer to the tour Iris Ranola of Manila, Philippines, appeared to be the toughest competition for Ming Ng and My-Hanh Lac early in the day. The big surprise for the day was longtime friend of the tour, Christine Foster. Foster pushed her way through the winners’ bracket, defeating Ann Bellamy 7-4 and Katie Cowan 7-5 but was sent to the elimination bracket by Lac. She didn’t give up and went on to defeat Sharon O’Hanlon 7-5 for a shot at Ng. Ng didn’t give her a chance, defeating her 7-0, sending Foster into fourth place. Ng and Lac matched up to see who would go on to play Ranola in the finals, with Lac coming up with the win. Lac had already qualified for the U.S. Open and was going strictly for the Virginia State title. Lac came out ahead 9-7 against Ranola, so Ranola will be attending the WPBA 2008 U.S. Open alongside My-Hanh Lac.
Open Results:
1st John Schmidt
2nd Brandon Shuff
3rd Manuel Chau
4th Larry Kressel
5th Danny Green
David Hunt
7th Joey Ryan
Paul Helms
9th Dustin Paris
Eric Moore
Bernie Kirby
My-Hanh Lac
Ladies’ Results:
1st My-Hanh Lac
2nd Iris Ranola
3rd Ming Ng
4th Christine Foster
5th Sharon O’Hanlon
Katie Cowan
7th Cheryl Pritchard
Ji-Hyun Park

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