Midwest 9-Ball Tour - Olathe, KS Wrap Up

Last weekend I made my first trip out to Olathe, KS for the Midwest 9-Ball Tour event out there.  I've been to the one in St. Louis a couple of times; but I've always heard that Olathe was the biggest stop on the tour.  "They" were right - as usual.  This event is AWESOME!!!! SO.MUCH.GOING.ON 

I got into town around 7:30pm, checked into my hotel, and headed over to the pool room, Shooter's. I decided since I was there I might as well go ahead and play in it; can't hurt, right? So, I sign up, and pull up a chair next to Treadway Cues and start to take in all the atmosphere.  I look around and see all these great tables and a row of Diamond Barboxes.  Off in the corner, I see Gabe Owen playing Chip Compton an ahead race of Banks for what I heard was decent size bankroll.  People *everywhere*, cues, booths, products, match-ups everywhere you look.  It was really quite impressive.

After the calcutta, I checked the schedule and I didn't play my first match until 2:30 Saturday afternoon.  So, I found Jacob and we managed to play a bit on one of the Diamond 9footers.  A really tightly shimmed Diamond even!  I came out the winner in a race to 7 to secure my first victory of the trip. :)

I hung out and sweated a lot of matches that night until I finally went back to the hotel around 5am.

Saturday, I get up around 11, get myself ready and head back to Shooters around noon.  In an attempt to get warmed up for my match, I play Jacob on the Diamond barbox for the cost of time. I come out the loser on that one when my match gets called early and he's ahead in the race.  

So my match is right next to the table they're showing on the stream, in the front row, in front of the bleachers.  Strangely, I don't get nervous about this.  I focus on my match and try to get out when I can.  The match was slow to start - and my 2 trips to the table, I was kicking at the ball.  But, I finally caught a little bit of a gear and got some games on the wire.  Then, out of nowhere, I break and run out!! My opponent, who was a very friendly older gentleman said "One of us finally did it how it's supposed to be done."  Unfortunately, I was so nervous from my break and run that my attempts to calm myself down worked too well and I took myself right out of the match.  It would be my last win of the set, and he would take the next 4 racks to win 9-6. I know what I did, so it's no real mystery.

Shortly (as in about 15 minutes) after that, I was called for my 2nd match; which I was not really ready for. I was still feeling a bit deflated about my loss and I didn't make more than 2 balls the first 4 racks, finding myself quickly down 0-4.  My opponent won the flip, then proceeded to break and run out. I broke dry, he ran out. He broke, played safe, I missed a kick, he ran out. I broke, scratched, he ran out.  Or might as well have.  I did finally get into the match later, but it was far too late. I ended up losing 9-5; but I hadn't really expected to do that well. Probably why I didn't.

I spent the remainder of the weekend in the pool room, watching matches, playing some and staking a player.  A few hours after my 2nd loss, I decided to play Jacob some one pocket; a race to 3 for some green. This was on a tripple-shimmed gold crown (see the link above for the tightly shimmed pockets; as this table was just as tight).  I recorded the match and you can watch it here.  It went hill-hill, but I came out ahead.  Afterwards, he wanted to play some 9-ball, but I got him to play 10-ball instead.  A race to 7 for the same amount.  Again, I recored it, and you can watch that set here. It wasn't as close as the one pocket match, but I really let him come back on me. I had him down 4-0 in the beginning, but he quickly caught up making it 5-4.  However, I did sink the final 10-ball (it wasn't pretty) and won my 3rd set against a player I have beaten only once in the year I've been playing him.

A couple hours later, after some food, Jacob matched up with a pro-am player, Manny Perez.  They played forever. They started playing with Manny giving Jacob the last 4, but Manny won the first race to 7 in just 9 games. They then played a second race with Jacob getting the last 5; they went hill-hill then changed to a win-by-two race; which Jacob won. Then they played a race to 8, which Manny won, then another race to 8, went hill-hill, then a 4-ahead, which Manny won. Then another race to 9, again it went hill-hill then this final race to win by 3; which I finally decided to go ahead and record since I knew it'd be the last of the session.  You can watch that match at this link.  

Somewhere around 2 or 3am I noticed Gabe Owen playing 3-cusion with who I later discovered was a local hotshot. I dont know what they were playing for, but they were racing to 15, and they played from about 2 in the morning until about 2 in the afternoon the next day - straight through.  I know, because I was there the whole time.  Jacob's set ended around 6am, and I knew I couldn't go back to the hotel to sleep since official check-out time was 11am, and if I went to sleep, I'd never wake up. haha  So, instead, I went to the hotel, changed, packed, visited the breakfast buffet and went back to Shooters.

I finally left that place around 3pm, stopped for gas and food and headed back to St. Louis.  It was a wonderful weekend - and I'm about 90% sure I'm going back for the next event!

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Filed Under: 10-Ball · 9-Ball · One Pocket · Tournaments

I GOT IT!!! My Treadway Cue!!!

After a couple of small delays due to a problematic finishing product, I picked up my first custom cue last night!!  It's from Treadway Cues - and check it out!:

Cocobolo into Ebony
Double-silver rings throughout
Veneers: Black - Graphite - Red - Graphite
Leather wrap
Joint: Black Phenloic
Pin: radial
Shafts (x2) 12.4mm with Kamui Black Soft
19oz on the nose!

 

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Filed Under: Gear · General

Missouri State 9-Ball Championship

I just *finally* heard about the State Amatuer 9-Ball Tournament that's happening Feb 11,2,13.  You can get the flyer and entry form here. Details below:

Each year, I think about heading down there to check it out, and each year I'm never able to make it.  This year is the best looking option, but it is also very last minute.  I'll have to see what I can come up with, but maybe, hopefully, I can check it out for at least one day. Doubt I'll play any, but it would be nice to see how it goes.

PRELIMINARIES  (2 sessions)
Friday, Feb. 10, 8 p.m. || Saturday, Feb. 11, 11 a.m.
Round robin
Ten flights of eight
Race to 6, winner’s choice
Single foul, 40 sec. shot clock
Top two per flight to finals
Five wild card finalists

SEMIFINALS: Sunday Feb. 12, 11 a.m.
Round robin
Five flights of five
Race to 6, winner’s choice
Top 2 per flight & 2 wild cards advance

FINALS: Twelve player double elimination playoff (4 byes).
Race to six in winners bracket.
Race to five in loser’s bracket

PRIZES: The C.L. Bailey Co. /Level Best has added $200 to the tournament for prizes and expenses.
1st = $2000.00 + Trophy
      Plus David Webster Custom Cue
2nd = 1100.00  + Trophy
3rd = 700.00  + Trophy
4th = 500.00  + Trophy
5th & 6th = 300.00  each
7th & 8th = 225.00  each
9th – 12th = 175.00  each
13th – 25th = 140.00  each

DOOR PRIZES
Out of the money finishers have a chance to compete For merchandise prizes… cues, cases… including the coveted Antique Cue. Door prize competition will begin after semifinals on Sunday.

FEES & REQUIREMENTS
  ENTRY FEE:  $95.00
  GREEN FEE:  $10.00
Early entrants have choice of session in preliminaries.  Time of entry time is judged by date and time of postmark, hand delivery or FAX.

MISSOURI RESIDENTS ONLY!

AMATEURS ONLY!

Valid Missouri driver’s license or other PICTURE I.D. required for proof of residence.  NO EXCEPTIONS!

Tournament committee decides resident and amateur status.

Tournament Director reserves exclusive right to buy back and reassign any canceled or forfeited berth

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Filed Under: 9-Ball · Tournaments

Accepting The Table

Last night, I played a local I've not seen in quite some time.  We have always played "about" even, although if I remember correctly, I had to give him a ball in one pocket, but the rotation games we were even. In any case, he was at the pool hall and looking for a game.  Even though I wasn't really playing my best, I have been looking for a little action here and there and wasn't going to pass this up.  We play cheap, and so the money won't be on my mind if I lose.  

The game is race to 6 (in an effort to keep the table-time costs down). We decide that there will be no push-outs (his rule) and it's call-9 (mine). Rules agreed upon, we begin. I win the flip, break and start my way through the rack. I make some mistakes early and he gets the first one. Then I get the next 3. But because it's call-9, the 9 on the snap doesn't count, which sucks cuz I made two of them during the set. I really should've won the match 6-1, but I hung two 9-balls.

Now, I will be the first to admit that I was getting all the rolls during the match.  But, something struck me, watching it happen to someone else.  There were so many times when he'd literally gripe and complain as he got down on the shot about the rolls, about how he's not getting the rolls, can't get a roll, getting no table love, etc and of course he's upset, so he'd fire the ball 100 miles an hour and miss, and leave me in great shape.  The longer this went on, the more I wanted to say "Don't be so negative, it's bad energy and it's a downward spiral."  Now, I know this, but I still sometimes have problems overcoming the seemingly endless bad fortune that comes my way.  Specific to this match, I still had negative thoughts when I blew shape, or missed a ball, but I realized in the last quarter of the match that his negativity so far outweighed my own that it was sort of a focal point for me.  Instead of worrying about how bad I feel like I'm playing, I'm starting to notice the good fortunes I'm getting ... which I then relate to how I feel about the match overall.  I felt good about the match. I felt I was playing level-headed and had good ideas; even if those ideas didn't come to fruition as I had planned, I was still happy with them.

To the point of this entry, I found myself being glad to be back at the table whenever he missed, regardless of the position he left me.  I think I finally learned to simple just accept the table. For example, during one of my runouts, I hung the 5 deep in the jaws, and he hit the ball just the wrong way to hook himself on the only ball on that side of the table.  He instantly bitched about not being able to get a roll.  But, that was not a bad roll, that was purely a bad shot.  He's played long enough to know that cueball is gonna die off the end-rail if you fire at it full in the face. He made a bad shot selection and paid the price for it - because he didn't survey the table and more importantly didn't accept the table.

So, you tell me, is that a bad roll? It's possible becaue he's off by 2 inches in either direction, but the better question is: why risk it at all. There's at least 3 ways to get to the 6 from there and he chose the worst of them all.

When I got on the hill, he for some reason thought his score was wrong, which I was a little offended by, but whatever. I offered to discuss it fully because I'd rather not have him thinking I tried to steal one; and I would've gladly rewound the camera to watch all of the match thus far to prove my point, but he declined and said it wouldn't matter anyway.

If you're curious to watch the match, you can do so below:

And lastly, I noticed that I'm becoming a bit more apathetic towards to my partner's mood/standing at the table.  If they're playing terribly, it doesn't affect me nearly as much as it did before.  Just because they're playing bad, doesn't mean I get to let up on my pressure (which I'm very guilty of in the past). I certainly played looser than I normally do - but I did that the entire match, it wasn't a change because I was ahead.  

There are many lessons I hope to absorb permanently from this little match.  And with this the first money match I've played this year - and it was a positive result, I'm extremely happy - and even looking forward to the next encounter with someone. :)

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Filed Under: 9-Ball

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