Jacoby Custom Cues Carolina Tour / Raleigh, NC
by Skip Maloney
Jeff Abernathy came back from a three-match visit to the one-loss side of the bracket to defeat B.J. Ussery in the finals of the Jacoby Custom Cues Carolina Tour stop February 14-15. The $1,000-added event drew 27 entrants to All Star Billiards in Raleigh, NC.
With three wins under his belt moving among the winners’ side final four, Abernathy faced Ussery for the first time as Sam Monday met Tony Morrison to decide who would battle for the hot seat. Monday sent Morrison west 7-5. Ussery moved Abernathy over in a hurry 7-2 and gained the hot seat with a hill-hill win over Monday.
Over on the one loss side, Sidney Champion and Robert Ray, who together had just dropped husband and wife Jay and Belinda Calhoun into the tie for seventh place, were there to meet Morrison and Abernathy. Morrison defeated Champion 7-4, as Abernathy got by Ray 7-3. In the quarterfinal match that followed, Morrison got within two racks before Abernathy finished it 7-5. Monday and Abernathy then fought to double-hill in the semifinals with Abernathy holding on to earn a second chance against Ussery.
Ussery got out in front 4-1 in the early going of the race-to-9 finals, but Abernathy caught him and moved ahead, first 7-5 and then 8-6 to reach the hill. Ussery battled back to knot it at 8-8 and then, in the deciding rack, missed while shooting at the 8 ball. Abernathy sunk the final two balls and took top honors.
Robert Ray took first place in an eight-player early bird event Friday, and Cassandra Locke defeated Gladys Rapliff 7-3 in a single match ladies’ event. Palmer Richardson won the seven-entrant juniors event. Chris Baker emerged from a 15-entrant field to take first in a second chance tournament Sunday, defeating Clint Clark in the finals.
1st Jeff Abernathy $1,000
2nd B.J. Ussery $500
3rd Sam Monday $300
4th Tony Morrison $200
5th Sidney Champion $100
7th Belinda Calhoun $75
9th Terry Champion