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Super Billiard Expo

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  • Super Billiard Expo

    The first time I ever played in it, I played a guy named Jason Kane. I didn't know him at the time, but our paths would cross again in a year or two. When he first got to the table and shot, my mouth dropped. I started looking around to see if anyone else was watching. I'd never seen a speed pool player before, let alone played one. I lost the first set, luckily it's a best of three sets match. I played slow the next set, and won. The third set was close. He had some good rolls, two slop shots in the final game. He actually apologized afterwards because it was very uncanny how many rolls he got. I just smiled and wished him good luck. It's not like I played a perfect match, so oh well.

    We "met" again at the APA Nationals one year, at an Artistic Pool Challenge, as it was called. It was just a lag contest though. He was working the booth with Tom Rossman. He won the contest the previous two years, I believe. $5 to enter. You can enter as many times as you want. You hit X number of lags, and you get points for how close to the rail it is. I put up a pretty good score my first try, in fact, it turned out to be the best score, by far. I kept checking the leaderboard the rest of the day, and the next, to see if I'd been beat. Still on top. When it was all said and done, I lost in a tiebreaker. I don't remember my score or exactly how it all went down. The memorable part was the tiebreaker. I think we had two scores, one set of X on each of two tables. I had a crazy high score on one and an average score on the other. I figured I was a lock for the tiebreaker. Turns out I was wrong. The tiebreaker was whoever had the most consistent score across both tables. I won a couple hundred bucks or something, which was second place prize money. We both got our pictures taken for the magazine, I think it mentioned how he dominated the contest, winning the last three years.

    The next time I entered SBE I won several matches, but I think I lost the match that would've cashed, not sure. I just remember how crazy fast the rails and felt were on the last table I played on. I did end up splitting in the Wed Night Warm up bracket, with an older gentleman who had an accent, either Irish or British IDK.

    I like to play the cheap $5 or $10 challenge tables. I remember doing well several times. One time in particular, I came up against Marc Vidal, aka Spain, and he broke and had a funny table, or made the 1 and got weird on the 2, I don't remember, but I remember the safe he played which was brilliant. The 2 ball was in the jaws and the cue ball almost was, in such a way that he couldn't make the 2. He didn't have a kick at it, so he shot at the two and froze it to the facing, leaving me in a similar but even more difficult predicament. The CB ball was now in the jaws as well, but not quite as deep as the 2. There was a small gap between the CB and the 2, and a small gap between the CB and the other facing. When I came to the table he said "Two bull frozen" in a thick accent. We were playing on a pro cut bar box so I knew the pocket wouldn't let both balls fall at the same time, so I shot, more like tapped, the cue ball, shooting it directly towards the pocket, as if to scratch. He stood very close to the table to make sure I didn't foul. In fact there were a dozen others nearby watching closely as well. The CB hit the 2, then hit the facing, then hit the two again then the facing, the might've happen again once or twice, until the were both perfectly wedged in the pocket. I stood up, looked right at him and said "Now they're both frozen."
    Last edited by youngstownkid; 03-27-2017, 03:10 AM.

  • #2
    Super Billiard Expo

    Well, I won my first two matches in the Wednesday Night Warmup event then got blanked in the finals. Nick Evans played a near perfect match. I saw an older gentleman sitting with him, and saw him later in The Pit. Rich Evans I think his name was, from STL. The guy just raises champions, I guess. He told me about two of his sons, the other named Ricky I think, who have played in Africa and China and it was great listening to him go on about it. He said Nick (or what it Ricky) took 2nd in the Open division when he was 12. That Nick kid has the best bar box 9b break that I've seen since Alex Olinger. He was making both wings balls and the 1 ball pretty consistently. I definitely need to work on my break.

    I won my first match at 3pm today, then Ias luck would have it, I had to play Nick Evans again. He won the first set, but I won the next two hill-hill both times. I started copying his break and finally got something going. I had a couple nice early game battle victories after he was forced to push a couple times. I made a couple good jump shots as well, which is not my strong suit at all. The tables are pretty fast and some of them are downright wicked fast off the cushion. Several times I slow rolled a ball to have the CB just come off 6 inches from the rail, and it came off to about 6" from the other long rail. Ugh. Really need to figured out each table fast, or else. Next match is 11am, didn't look to see who. Time to rest up. YTK out.

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    • #3
      Super Billiard Expo

      I played good my next two matches. Not perfect, but good enough to win my first match barely, and only made one costly mistake the second match. My last match was fun, I had my tunes on, and was a machine. My pre-shot routine could have been synced up to a metronome. I guess in a way it might have been, since I was listening to music. I probably played my very best. I barely ever play on barboxes, but I'm getting the feel. Today will be exciting. Out of 1024 players, there are 64 left. Two more wins will earn a place in the final bracket.

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      • #4
        Super Billiard Expo

        Guess who's name is going to get written down at the #16 spot...

        🤗

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        • #5
          Super Billiard Expo

          Well, I played good in the last match, but had one too many safeties that weren't on point. I missed one ball that I remember vividly and prob at least one other that I don't remember. I broke great in the match though, except maybe once. That was the key. As the tourney progressed, my break got better and better.

          I bought a hat to help cope with all the lighting, as it started to affect me as I got tired. I was up until 3, when our infant started crying, then I was up with him for a bit. That's not an excuse though, because I actually felt fine in the morning. The hat took some getting used to but just became apart of my pre-shot routine, where I would often adjust it more than once. I'm sure it drove Tom Z crazy, but...oh well. Not intentionally.

          The thing that I noticed was that I let myself get a feel for the balls, then stopped aiming. Instead I just looked and knew where to hit it, and didn't second-guess myself.

          One other thing, I might have made more banks than anyone in the tourney. I only missed one maybe...I love those blue labels!
          Last edited by youngstownkid; 04-04-2017, 06:54 PM.

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