Cha Claims WPBA Regional Tour Championship
WPBA Regional Tour Championship / Houston, TX
by Carl Miller
In late March, 63 women gathered at Bogies Billiards in Houston, TX, to compete in the annual four-day WPBA Regional Tour Championship. This invitation-only, pro tour qualifier was sanctioned by the WPBA and offered more than $13,000 in total prize money, plus the opportunity for eight women to earn the final eight WPBA tour cards available for 2011. The field, which included WPBA players who had finished out of the top 40 at the close of 2010 and top players from the nine regional tours, was topped by Yu-Ram Cha, who took home first place.
Cha was at the top of her game, rolling over Becky Jones 9-1, Jana Montour 9-0, and Lisa Marr 9-3. At the same time, Briana Miller showed she was quite capable of making the move up from junior events by defeating Ashley Nandrasy 9-7, Monica Anderson 9-1, and Jacqui Herrera 9-4. Then, matched against Cha, the unflappable teenager fought gamely but succumbed 9-4.
Meanwhile, Susan Williams opened by winning her first three matches before dropping a hill-hill set to Janet Atwell 9-8. Canadian Joanne Ashton won her first four matches but relinquished the hot seat to Cha 9-4.
By the final afternoon, the field was down to eight, and the question of tour cards had been settled. Miller eliminated Veronique Menard 7-1 and Atwell 7-3, while Williams defeated Kim Benson 7-5 and Sharon O’Hanlon 7-3. Williams then went on to eliminate Miller 7-4, leaving the teenager with a respectable fourth-place finish. Williams then prevailed over Ashton in a tense hill-hill battle and earned a final match-up with Cha.
In the championship match, Cha and Williams each won a game, then Cha stepped out to a three-game lead. Williams fought hard to the end but had to settle for a second-place finish by a score of 9-4.
1st Yu-Ram Cha $3,250
2nd Susan Williams $1,930
3rd Joanne Ashton $1,320
4th Briana Miller $1,056
5th Sharon O’Hanlon $792
7th Veronique Menard $660
9th Shelby Locati $396
13th Jana Montour $264