Souquet Sent West at U.S. Billiards Championship
U.S. Open 9-Ball Championships / Chesapeake, VA
In the 7 p.m. round, Ralf Souquet survived a 48-hour stretch without sleeping to only arrive in Chesapeake and get 7 hours of sleep before his match against Northeastern regional player Manny Chau. Souquet was flying in from Switzerland, where he just won back-to-back EuroTour events, something that has not been accomplished in years. Though he suffered from a headache and general malaise Monday evening, he experienced few troubles sending Chau west 11-3.
However, his next match against Chris Szuter did not go so well for “The Surgeon.” Leading 5-3, Souquet faltered and allowed Szuter to catch up. The Canton, OH, room owner not only caught up, he put the screws to Souquet, taking over and reaching the hill 10-6. He missed the 3 ball badly, but Souquet failed to get shape on the 5 with ball in hand and gave control back to Szuter, who won the match 11-6.
Steve Moore matched up with John Kutcher, who owns the poolroom Sharks in Las Vegas. With his break in full gear, Moore dominated the match from the beginning, going from a 5-2 lead up to a 9-4 lead before closing things out at 11-4.
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Bernardo “King Kong” Chavez out of Hard Times, Bellflower, took England’s Lee Chenman to the hill and came out ahead at the end of it. Down the entire match, Chavez finally got a break at 10-8 Chenman. He won the next two racks and then came up dry on his next break. Chenman tried to play safe on the 2 but left it wide open, with Chavez scoring on a 2-9 combo to win.
The 9 p.m. round saw defending champion Shane Van Boening making an appearance against Tony Miller. A local Chesapeake, VA, player Miller stayed in the game when Van Boening began struggling with his break; however, at 5-4 in Van Boening’s favor, the “South Dakota Kid” pulled away with a strong 11-5 victory.
Southern California’s Ernesto Dominguez, who’s been having a great year, matched up with Phil Burford, who is the junior European 9-ball champion and is ranked second in England after Darren Appleton. Just 17, Burford kept up with Dominguez for the first half of the match throughout the safety play, but Dominguez ended up taking control of the match and winning 11-5.
Tuesday morning begins the elimination round. Visit InsidePOOL for the latest news in the sport of billiards and pool.