The U.S. Bar Table Championship began Monday, February 23, with a total of 76 players in the 10-ball division. The Sands Regency Hotel and Casino in Reno, NV, is host to the sixteenth annual event, which boasts a $24,500-added prize fund.
Of that, $6,000 was added to the 10-ball division, which has a total prize fund of $13,600. The field has attracted players from as far away as England—reigning world 10-ball champion Darren Appleton—and includes players such as Stan Tourangeau, Edwin Montal, Rafael Martinez, Jose Parica, Steve Moore, and Tyler Edey.
Defending champion Shane Van Boening has already sent two opponents to the one-loss side today—Frank Almanza and Ken Richardson, both with 7-3 victories. His next match will be against defending 8-ball champ Mitch Ellerman, who recently won the Jay Swanson Memorial Tournament in Hollywood, CA.
Defending 9-ball and all-around champion at this event, Johnathan “Hennessee” Pinegar is undefeated also and will next play Mark Tadd. There are also several ladies playing in this event, including Cristina De La Garza, Andrea Wilson, and Angelina Paglia.
The format is a race to 7, double elimination, alternating breaks, rack your own. The 10 ball counts in any pocket if made on the break. The 9-ball division kicks off Wednesday, while the 8-ball event begins Friday.
Weather complications caused travel issues for many players, particularly those coming from California. A large number of players also made the trek across the country from the Turning Stone Classic in Verona, NY that just concluded last night. Due to all the delayed arrivals of players, the tournament directors postponed the players meeting by 4 hours and pushed back the match start times by 2 hours.
Jose Parica and Rafael Martinez played the first TV table match of the day. Parica came out victorious. Other notable match-ups included, Michigan’s top player, Jason Kirkwood, vs. Tyler Edey which ended in a hill-hill thriller where Kirkwood missed a tough 1-ball after Edey played a lock-up safety. Left with an open table, Edey successfully ran out the remainder of the rack to secure his spot on the winners’ side.
Last year’s U.S. Bar Table 9-Ball and All-Around Champion, Jonathan Pinegar, suffered a loss in the 3rd round of the winners side to California’s Mark Tadd with a score of 7-4 in the final round of Day 1.
Junior champion, Austin Murphy, got his opportunity at a rematch of his NCS 8-Ball Championships semi-final match with Brandon Shuff. Unfortunately for Murphy, the result would be the same as Shuff won the hill-hill game with ball-in hand after Murphy scratched on an attempted safety.
Although there are only 76 players, the field is packed with talent. Top players who still remain on the winners’ side include Shane Van Boening, Darren Appleton, Stevie Moore, Glen Atwell, Joey Gray, Stan Tourangeau and Adam Behnke who has only allowed his opponents to collectively score one game against him.
Tournament brackets are available at www.playbca.com/cts and live streaming, provided by OBCues, can be found on The Action Report homepage, www.theactionreport.com. Live streaming will begin at 10am PST on Saturday with Cristina De La Garza vs. Paul Juarez.
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