Without a doubt 8-ball on the bar box is a thrilling quick dose of cuesport euphoria. When two players match up the winner is usually a toss-up. Above a certain skill-level any player can win with some potting and safety play. On Sunday June 5th, Petrina’s Taps and Billiards in Ajax, hosted the finale of its Winter/Spring Eight Ball Series and qualified players participated in the $750 added tournament.
Before the tournament points money was awarded to Leanne Lini (5), Al Kinghorn (8), Jim Pickett (7) and Joshua Bryan (7) for their top four finishes during the five events held. Unfortunately Josh and Jim could not make the final for other reasons but their contribution and support to the series is greatly appreciated. The format of the Eight-ball Series tournament does not allow players to lose after their first round of play, essentially allowing a warm up round. Thereafter players are split into A and B brackets and play until there is only one shooter left standing.
Colin Kerr (9), faced Ron Scriver (6) in the first round and ground out an (8-3) win. Mike Van Eck (7) had driven two hours from Brantford, to make the finale and showed no rust in dismissing the newbie Jacob Haslam (5) by a (7-1) score. Al Kinghorn (8), continued his recent surgical mastery on the felt and sent Scott Schinkel (7) to the B-side in an (8-4) result. Garland Tully (5), showed his game is returning and sent Sean Blomeley (5) to the B-side in a (5-2) win. The last match of the first round featured Greg Ross (7) versus Leanne Lini (5). This pair has battled on several occasions during the series and this was to be another battle. With the score hill-hill Leanne handed the ball over after a foul on the black and it seemed the game was done. Greg lined up a shot and inadvertently jumped the ball off the table handing the game and match back to Leanne.
The second round was a very quick round. Players had warmed up and were firing on all cylinders. Al Kinghorn dismissed Mike Van Eck (8-1) sending him packing. Leanne Lini, energized by her turn-around win beat Garland Tully by a (5-0) drubbing. Greg Ross could not recoup his first round mistake and lost (5-4) against Sean Blomeley who finally had gotten his first shandy down to steady his nerves. Jacob Haslam was no competition for Scott Schinkel who easily won (7-2). Jacob Haslam played poorly today but is an up-and-comer and will only get better.
Third Round action featured a dramatic win by Al Kinghorn. He was down (5-2) against Colin Kerr and turned the match around winning (7-5). It must be noted that Colin had gone up in handicap during the series and had to spot his opponents a game. Al Kinghorn, in deadstroke, advanced the A-side final against Leanne Lini who had benefitted from a bye earlier on. The B-side action saw Scott Schinkel advance to the final over Ron Scriver in a (7-1) win. Sean Blomeley would advance to the final as well; again the recipient of a generous bye.
Our two finals featured great matches and in the end the fives triumphed. Ye, they had to win fewer games but it took grit, determination and the will to succeed to make them winners. Both Leanne and Sean had to capitalize on mistakes and also give due respect to the better skill of their opponents in playing safety when required. Congratulations to Leanne Lini and Sean Blomeley for showing that determination can move mountains.
Leanne Lini (5) $375
Al Kinghorn (8) $250
Sean Blomeley (5) $250
Scott Schinkel (7) $190
The 8-ball Series will be back in the fall. During the summer Petrina’s will hold some one day events featuring this format.