Desert Classic Tour / Phoenix, AZ
by Skip Maloney
Scott Frost took 43 minutes in a final race to 10 against Mitch Ellerman to complete an undefeated weekend at the Desert Classic Tour the weekend of March 21-22. The $1,000-added, 8-ball event drew 50 entrants to Bullshooters in Phoenix, AZ.
From among the winners’ side final four, Frost began his march to the winner’s circle with a 7-3 win over tour director Dennis Orender. Gus Bresino, in the meantime, was sending Denny Holmes west with a 7-1 victory. Frost took command early and often in the hot seat match that followed, defeating Bresino 7-1 and waiting for his return, which, thanks to Ellerman, never happened.
On the one-loss side, Ellerman was working his way back, beginning with a 6-1 victory over John Smith and a double-hill win over Muaz Ashad that put him up against Holmes. Pete Lohtka advanced past Mike Hancock and Nick DeLeon to meet Orender. Ellerman then shut out Holmes, as Lohtka dropped Orender 6-3 into the tie for fifth place. Ellerman recorded his second straight shut-out in the quarterfinals versus Lohtka and then faced Bresino, who was looking for a second chance against Frost. Ellerman prevailed in another hill-hill struggle for him that sent him to the finals.
Frost, who’d only dropped 4 of his last 18 racks getting to the finals, opened up the race to 10 with seven straight victories that took 19 minutes to complete. Early predictions of a 30-minute final match seemed to be a distinct possibility, until Ellerman stepped to the table in game eight and scored a three-pack in just over 10 minutes. Frost took the next rack to make it 8-3 but failed to make a ball on the subsequent break. Ellerman took advantage and ran the table to edge a game closer. It was as close as he got, though, as Frost took the next rack to reach the hill at 39 minutes, and 4 minutes later, he finished it for the title.
1st Scott Frost $925
2nd Mitch Ellerman $600
3rd Gus Bresino $425
4th Pete Lohtka $275
5th Dennis Orender $175
7th Nick DeLeon $125
9th Mike Hancock $100