Windy City Teams Prevail at 35th BCAPL Nationals
More divisions and events were created for players at this year’s (35th) BCAPL National 8-Ball Championships. With the addition of the Men’s and Women’s 9-Ball Open Singles divisions, two new 9-ball team divisions were added to the end of the 10-day extravaganza so players could have more events in which to participate. A new 8-Ball Mixed Advanced division was also created to allow more teams to compete as well.
Of the nine total 8-ball and 9-ball team divisions, three of the winning teams came from the Chicago area. In the Men’s Mixed 8-Ball Open Team division, the Chicago team Off Constantly was not off at all. They went undefeated through the field of 618 teams with only a couple close matches. In the finals, they bested The Little Rascals from Downey, California by a devastating score of 13 to 4. “This was our first time playing nationals together,” said Off Constantly team captain Tony Gahala.
In the Women’s Open 8-Ball Team division, T’s Bar from Pueblo, Colorado went undefeated through the 126 team field to take home the gold. This solid team of ladies gave up very few games in their matches and the finals were no exception. Even the veteran Wisconsin ladies team of Jackson Cues only won two games in the final match. It was a well earned victory for T’s Bar.
The new Mixed Advanced 8-Ball Team, Riverside Gators from Lancaster, Pennsylvania, almost let the prize slip through their fingers when the Texas Assassins came for them. In a two-set finale, the Assassins handily took the first set 11 to 6. With Texas state champions on the roster and a previous Texas State team championship under their belts, they were poised for a comeback. Little did they know, the Gators were hungry for the win. With Men’s Senior Singles runner-up Bill McCoy on their team, Riverside Gators pulled out a close win in the second set 11 to 9.
Also hailing from Chicago and playing out of the same pool room as the Men’s Mixed 8-Ball Open Team Champions is the Women’s Masters 8-Ball team The Domin8’ers. The tenacity these ladies displayed paid off. They lost their second round to the New York Dolls and fought through the field for a rematch. Hill-hill in the first set, a showdown took place between team captains Gina Kim-Lipsky of the Dolls and Jacqui Herrera-Schroeder of the Domin8’ers. With only two stripes left, Kim-Lipsky unintentionally left herself a tricky combination which she missed. Herrera-Schroeder ranout and with new life, the Domin8’ers lived up to their name, taking the second set 9 to 5 for the title.
The intimate field at this year’s Men’s Mixed Masters 8-Ball Team championship has hopes of growing the division in the coming years. It was no surprise the Flip Flops from Tulsa, Oklahoma went undefeated to become the new champions with 9-Ball Challenge Champ, Chip Compton on their team. Compton also came in fourth in the 8-Ball Grand Masters Singles division. The Flip Flops bested last year’s BCAPL Mixed Open Team Champs Who Needs a Billiard Coach?! in the first found 11 to 9 and again in the finals 11 to 7, with both teams exchanging table runs. Joey Gray, of team Flip Flops, broke and ran in the final rack for the victory.
The third victorious Chicago area team was the Women’s 9-Ball team of Finders Keepers. Though they did not fare well in the 8-ball division, the ladies reconvened for a victory in the 9-ball event. They defeated the local Las Vegas ladies team VegasBilliardBuzz.com in a two set finale. The Buzz ladies came through the b-side to take the first set 9 to 7 but ran out of steam in the second set, losing 9 to 2 in the end.
The Men’s Mixed Open 9-Ball Team champion was the Portland, Oregon team of Abracadabra. These gentlemen would not settle for second place. After losing to the Florida team of C.O.Z. (Curse of Zeno), they returned with a vengeance, defeating C.O.Z. in a two-set finals of 11 to 6 and 11 to 5. They finished strong with their secret weapon, 16-year-old Chris Byers who finished runner-up in this year’s Men’s Open Singles division.
Of the 97 Men’s Mixed 8-Ball Trophy teams, Dub Club from Plummer, Idaho went undefeated to become the new champions. They defeated Hughes Cues from Alamosa, Colorado in the finals with a score of 13-10. Of the 10 Women’s 8-Ball Trophy teams, Group Therapy from Copperas Cove, Texas proved they did not need any therapy at all. They too went undefeated through their division, beating the ladies of Victoria, BC ladies of Esp Legion Barbie Cues in the finals.
Photo of 2011 BCAPL Men’s Mixed Open Team Champions Off Constantly courtesy of Fred Stoll of FilmlessArt.com