Winters Scores First Joss Win of the Season
Joss Northeast 9-Ball Tour / Yorkville, NY
by Lea Andrews
Shane Winters, who took the spotlight away from Dennis Hatch a couple of times last season on the Joss Northeast 9-Ball Tour, nabbed it for the first time this season at the second annual Al Conte Memorial Tournament. The $1,500-added main event, held November 6-7, drew a strong field of 39 to Hippo’s House of Billiards in Yorkville, NY.
Winters got past Spencer Auigbelle 9-6 to reach the hot seat match against fellow tour hotshot Dave Grau, who’d blown past Chris Testa 9-2. Against Winters, though, Grau came up two racks shy and moved over to the semifinals 9-7.
On the left side of the bracket, Jerry Crowe ousted Lyn Wechsler 9-6 and Willie Oney 9-4 to meet up with Auigbelle. Meanwhile, last week’s runner-up, Tom D’Alfonso, was striving for another trip to the finals. After taking care of Al Conte’s grandson, Victor Conte, 9-5, D’Alfonso whipped past Chance Chin 9-2 to greet Testa, who got the same 9-2 dose as Chin. D’Alfonso moved on to the quarterfinal match against Auigbelle, who’d had his own 9-2 win over Crowe. In keeping with the current theme, Auigbelle held D’Alfonso to two racks, planting him in fourth place and moving on to the semifinal match against Grau. Both of Winters’ victims fought hard for another go at him, but the hill-hill match ended ever so slightly in Auigbelle’s favor 9-8.
In the beginning of the true double-elimination final match, Auigbelle and Winters traded games to make it 4-4, but Winters managed to mark up a few racks in a row to make it 7-4. Auigbelle rallied, taking the count to 7-6, and while Winters notched another to reach the hill, Auigbelle wasn’t far behind. It was too little, too late, though. With the score at 8-8, Auigbelle broke open the final rack, but nothing fell, leaving Winters free to run to the 9 and claim his first victory this season undefeated.
In Sunday’s $500-added second chance non-pro event, Mike Donnelly reached the finals unscathed, but Dwight Dixon, who’d been on the west side since his first-round loss, kept up his own hot streak to put the two men on even ground. Dixon pushed the second set of the finals 3-1, but the second round went to Donnelly, who earned his win 3-2.
The tour’s next stop is the 22nd Annual Ocean State 9-Ball Championships, which will be held once again at Snooker’s Billiards in Providence, RI, November 13-14. The entry fee for the $5,000-added event is $125, and there will not be a second chance event Sunday. Also coming up is December’s highly anticipated $25,000-added Turning Stone Classic XVI. A limited number of spots are still available, so interested competitors should contact tour director Mike Zuglan at 518-356-7163 as soon as possible.
1st Shane Winters $1,100
2nd Spencer Auigbelle $800
3rd Dave Grau $600
4th Tom D‘Alfonso $400
5th Jerry Crowe $250
7th Willey Oney $150
Second Chance Results:
1st Mike Donnelly $300
2nd Dwight Dixon $200
3rd Kean Thomas $150
4th Victor Conte $100
5th Brian Lipes $35