Twelve-Year-Old Crockett Wins First Match
U.S. Open 9-Ball Championships / Chesapeake, VA
The elimination rounds began Tuesday afternoon at the 33rd Annual U.S. Open 9-Ball Championships, with some exciting matches going on between players trying to stay alive.
Danny Harriman, who gave up a 10-4 lead over Rodney Morris Monday evening to be sent west 11-10, met Southern California player Josh Ulrich. Harriman must have taken a page out of Morris’ book, for after being down 7-3 to Ulrich, he made a tremendous comeback to knot the score at 9 apiece. Though Harriman missed the 3 ball, Ulrich replied with a miss on the 5, and Harriman ran out the rest of the set to win 11-9.
Tommy Kennedy, who lost his first-round match to Matt Krah 11-9, fought through another one-loss side match Tuesday afternoon. His opponent was Joonas Ohtenen of Finland, and the two of them fought to hill-hill, with Kennedy maintaining the lead at all times. At 10-8, Kennedy played a safety on the 7 ball, and Ohtenen countered with a jump shot on the 7. This sent the 9 ball spinning around the table going three rails. Ohtenen shouted, “One time!” as the 9 dropped in the side pocket. However, one time wasn’t enough, for Kennedy won the match soon after 11-10.
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The talk of the tournament, though, was the match-up between 12-year-old Brenden Crockett and Ralph Bullard. Crockett, who hails from Southern California, has only been playing pool for 8 months and learned how to play from buying Accu-Stats and instruction videos. He picked up a new Predator cue Monday and obviously took to it. The match score remained even throughout until, at 8-all, Crockett was left with a very difficult shot on the 9 ball. Unfazed, he cross-banked the 9 to take the lead and then snapped in the 9 ball on his following break to reach the hill. Crockett scratched on his next break, and Bullard cleared, but he scratched on the 4 ball in the following rack, and Crockett ran out for the 11-9 win.
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