Newsletter Volume 15 Issue 07
2016 Winter Singles League Standings – Final
Tuesday Night Singles: After three weeks of play, Jimmy Francisco has now taken over 1st place by himself with a 1 point lead over Mike Bates and Todd Cook. Four players take all (15) points in their matches last week. Walter Wnuk, Mike Bates, Jimmy Francisco and Todd Cook. Katie Morris may be issued a new nickname after her match last week, as her cue ball found the pocket as many times as her object ball shots. How about Katie ‘Scratch’ Morris . That is what seemed to happen in her match, but she did manage 9 points despite her scratching problems. Gary Loverde should be back from vacation and play in week 4. He will have three games to make up. One with Stephanie, one with Walter and one with Ray. Hopefully this can happen in the next few weeks.
Table 1: Walter W (15) vs (9) Katie M:
Walter started fast as he nailed back to back winners to get started in the 8 Ball Set. From the start of the match, Katie had her fair share of problems keeping the cue ball on the table, but did long enough to take game 3 and get on the score sheet. After Walter built up a 3-1 lead, Katie put together two very nice games. She finished a four ball run in game 5 and then followed up with a 6 ball run in game 6 to tie up the set at 3 games each. Walter then reached back and with some precision shots and position play, nailed a 7 ball run to take the lead for good. He closed out the final game of the set notching the 8 ball as Katie’s scratching started creeping into her game. Walter takes the first set with a 5-3 set win.
Katie & Walter split the first two games to get started in the 9 Ball Set. Katie continued to be plagued by an uncooperative cue ball that still found the bottom of the pocket at the most inopportune times. Walter took the lead in the match for good as he posted a 6-9 combo to take game 3. He continued to gain momentum as he nailed a win in game 4 with a 4 ball run to finish off the game. Katie made a fantastic bank shot to cap a short run in game 5 hoping to shift the momentum back to her. That just wasn’t going to happen as Walter nailed a 1-4-9 combo in game 6 and closed out the set with a final victory in game 7, taking it 5-2. Walter had doubled the match points after the second set.
For the first time in the match, Katie drew first blood in the 10 Ball Set. With a nice 3 ball run she capped off the win in game 1. Then it was a back and forth battle for both players. Walter notched a 7-10 combo to even up the set. Katie & Walter split games 3 & 4 with both players showing some remarkable shooting skills. Katie found the banks still open in game 5 as she nailed a very nice 10 ball bank for the win in game 5. Katie made it two straight wins to get on the hill as she posted a 7-10 combo win in game 6. With Walter on the verge of losing the set, he made some very nice safeties to hold off Katie from taking the final set. Walter fought his way back in as he notched game 7, posted a 6 ball run in game 8 and got a little help from Katie with an untimely scratch that gave him the chance to finish the set with a come from behind win. Walter made it three straight wins and takes the final set 5-4. This was a very good match that could have swung more in Katie’s favor if it hadn’t been for the scratch disease that plagued her in most of the match. Very nice shooting by both players.
Table 2: Nigel M (08) vs (13) Austin H:
At the onset of this match, the writer was able to visually see several errors made by Nigel that continued to assist Austin in the match that was complimented by some very nice shooting. Austin continues to shoot well and with several unforced errors by Nigel breezed through the 8 Ball Set to take a 5-0 lead in the match. Austin had several nice runs in the games played. One game was a 6 ball and out run and the final game saw a 5 ball run to closed out the set.
After the sweep in the first set, Nigel came back strong and nailed back to back wins to stop Austins run at 5 in the 9 Ball Set and take a quick lead in the set. Austin posted the win in game 3 with some nice safety play to keep Nigel a bit off balance in his shot making. Nigel answered with a 4 ball run to get back to a two game lead. Austin changed his strategy from offense to more defense and it worked like a charm. Austin posted back to back three foul rule winners in games 5 & 6 to tie up the set. He proceeded to take the lead and not look back. Austin nailed a 3-9 combo in game 7 and finished off the match winning game 8, taking the set 5-3. Austin had built up a 10-3 lead in the match after two sets.
Sometimes payback can be gratifying and I think Nigel got that to start out the 10 Ball Set. He turned the tables on Austin hooking his three times to win by the three foul rule. He added some salt to the wounds of Austin as he nailed the 10 ball on the break in game 2. Austin got on the score sheet winning game 3 with another long run to get the win. Nigel answered with his own run posting the win in game 4. With a two game lead, Austin did not let up and posted back to back wins in games 5 & 6 which evened up the set at 3 games each. Nigel continued to play well and with a 4 ball run took the lead winning game 7 that put him on the hill. He didn’t give Austin much chance in game 8 either as he hid the cue ball several times that gave him an opening to finish the game. Nigel takes the final set with the win in game 8, turning a possible rout into a closer match. Nigel wins 5-3 but loses the match by 5 points. Nice shooting by Austin who drops a couple of spots this week to fourth. A very nice effort and try by Nigel.
Table 3: Mike Bates (15) vs (03) Stephanie M:
Mike has seemed to struggle in the last few weeks but seem to rise to the occasion in week 3 with some very nice shooting. Stephanie was up against not only a great shot maker, but one that plays tremendous safeties that helps him win games and sets. Mike opened the 8 Ball Set notching game 1 with a 5 ball run. Stephanie started strong as she posted a 4 ball run in game 2 to even the set. Then, misses by Stephanie opened the door more and more for Mike, not that he need help but he certainly took it. Mike made several nice runs, and when he couldn’t finish, he made sure that Stephanie couldn’t either. Mike notched the next four games as he closed out the set with a 5-1 set win.
Mike continued to stay hot and the momentum followed him into the 9 Ball Set. Mike posted wins in games 1 & 2, using all of his shooting skills. This include several long shots and some timely banks to keep runs going. With 6 straight wins by Mike, Stephanie finally got a good chance to take game 3 and made a nice run to cap off the win. Mike again got rolling posting his second set of back to back wins, closing out games 4 & 5 and took a 4-1 lead in the set. Stephanie came out in game 6 posting a 3 ball run early in the game and then continued to keep Mike at bay with some very key safety plays. Mike finally missed a chance to take the game and stalled out. Stephanie didn’t slow down and cleaned up the balance of the balls to take game 6. Mike took the final game in the set and a 5-2 win. Mike had a large lead in the match.
The 10 Ball Set didn’t go as well as Stephanie had hoped as Mike continued to make balls and keep Stephanie off the table with very tough leaves when he couldn’t finish the rack. Mike never looked back as he nailed win after win. Before Stephanie could even get any kind of momentum, Mike had nailed (5) straight wins to take the final set 5-0. It was a valiant effort by Stephanie who for the second straight week had a match against a very good shooter. Very nice shooting by Mike .
Table 5: Jimmy F (15) vs (07) Micks M:
Jimmy continues to be the shooter to beat in this session. He seems to be getting his game to a very high level. Micks played one of the best shooters in the league and hung in the match throughout the sets. Jimmy took control of the 8 Ball Set early as he made few mistakes and capitalized on the misses by Micks. Jimmy nailed the first three games, posting a 6 ball run and back to back 5 ball runs to take a 3 game lead in the set. Micks finally got on the score sheet as he finished off game 4 with a very nice run. Jimmy wasted little time to get back in the his winning ways and notched back to back wins to take the first set 5-1.
Jimmy got things going in the 9 Ball Set posting the opening win as he continued to shoot well, finishing off 4 balls to get out in game 1. Micks started to find his stroke in this set and notched the next two wins in the set. Micks drained game winners in 2 & 3 with some nice shooting to take the lead. Jimmy fired in a quick 2-9 combo in game 4 to square up the set. Game 5 was even quicker, this time it was Micks pounding in a 1-9 combination win. The momentum seemed to be swinging his way as he again found some relatively good starting positions left by Jimmy to get going and finish game 6. Micks has now built up a 2 game lead getting on the hill with the win. It is tough to keep a sharpshooter like Jimmy down and it doesn’t take much for him to get going. Jimmy turned the possible rack loss into another win. He nailed four balls and out in game 7 and new slowed down. Jimmy posted wins in games 8 & 9, both with some great runs and position play to come from behind to take the set with a 5-4 win.
The 10 Ball Set started out looking like it would go the distance as the 9 ball set went. Micks started out the set with a very nice run and got on the sheet first with a good run. Then it went back and forth. Jimmy nailed game 2 as he too made another nice run to finish the game. Micks and Jimmy split the next two games, Micks making a four ball run and Jimmy getting a break to notch the final two balls in game 4. The set was all even up to this point. A few misses, a couple of easy starts and Jimmy took control of the set. He posted wins in the next three games with nice shooting and position play to close out the final set. Jimmy takes a 5-2 set win and the match by 8. A very good effort and try by Micks. Nice shooting by Jimmy.
Table 6: Todd C (15) vs (04) Marty M:
Marty came out firing in some great shots to start out the 8 Ball Set and keep a good shooting Todd off the table quite a bit in the set. Marty nailed back to back wins taking games 1 & 2. It was now Todd’s turn to answer and that he did. He nailed games 3 & 4 with some good shooting and a bit of help from Marty on some good starting positions in the games. The momentum seemed to change back and forth in this set as Marty also got some good leaves to start some of his runs. He posted a four ball run to close out game 5 and then nailed a game winner in 6 to climb on the hill taking a 2 game lead. This set had already saw the players posting back to back winner in their chances at the table. It was Todd though breaking the trend as he did post winners in games 7 & 8 but did not stop there. With a very nice run in game 9, Todd closed out the set with three straight wins and take a 1 point lead in the match.
Todd seemed feed off the come from behind win in the previous set and Marty seemed to stall. Todd opened the 9 Ball Set posting the first game winner and he was on the score sheet first in the set. Marty just could not buy any shots. When he had his chance, the balls just weren’t dropping but they definitely set up enough to get Todd started with some easier opening shots. Todd nailed wins in the next four games to sweep the set 5-0. Marty could not close out any of the games in the set as he continued to struggle to make the shots but certainly left several opening for Todd to gain momentum. Todd takes a 6 point lead in the match.
The 10 Ball Set started as bad for Marty as the previous set had. Todd still had control and the momentum as he continued to shoot well. With each miss by Marty, the tables seemed to set up for Todd. If it wasn’t a scratch, then Marty got some very tough starting positions that kept him cold on his shot making. Todd again took advantage of the openings left and posted wins in all 5 games in the set. Marty just could not get going and Todd just didn’t stop. With the second sweep, Todd take the match by 11 points and remains tied for 2nd place. It was a valiant effort by Marty and nice shooting by Todd.
Thursday night Doubles: The English Majors remain unbeaten after 7 weeks of play, as they played a good team, The Two Old Guys, who battled but fell by 3 points in the match. English Majors increase their first place lead to 8 points over Reckless who went down to defeat this week against another tough team, Zenith, as they played 24 games in their match. Zenith was the only team to take all (15) points and have climbed up the ladder into 3rd place. Double D also moved up one spot into 4th. They posted a one point victory in their match, that went 25 games, two short of the maximum that could have been played. This turned out to be a week that saw no blow outs and some pretty close matches all in all.
2016 Winter Doubles League Standings – Final
Table 1: Just Another Bye Week (12) vs (09) The Johns:
The Johns gave Just Another Bye Week all they could handle in week 7 with some very nice shooting by John Sr who continues to excel in his shooting. Scott M got things going for Bye Week as he opened with a 5 ball run to take game one in the 8 Ball Set. John Sr answered with a 3 ball run to close out game 2 with some very nice shot making in the run. Scott K got Just Another Bye Week another win as he too made some nice shots to get out in game 3. Scott M continues to shoot lights out and help Bye Week take a 2 game lead in the set. John Jr who has been quiet the last few weeks got The Johns a game closer in the set as he took game 5. Too many misses by The Johns continued to assist Bye Week in their quest to take the set. Scott K’s win put them on the hill and Scott M’s win closed out the set with a 5-2 set win.
The 9 Ball Set turned out to be the reverse of the first set as The Johns seemed to take charge of this set. John Sr continues to shoot well and nailed the first win in the 9 Ball Set to put his team on the sheet. Scott K has not been scoring as much as his partner but put it together in this match. He ran 4 and out in the 2nd game and the set was all even. John Sr again came back firing in some nice shots posting back to back wins for The Johns. After nailing game 3, John Sr posted a 3-9 combo that gave them a 3-1 lead. John Jr got them to the hill as he made the final two balls in the 5th game of the set. Sitting on the hill with a 4-1 lead gave The Johns the edge in the set. Just Another Bye Week would have to play not only some good offense but also keep The Johns off the table with some good defense. Scott K cut the lead to two games as he made a nice run to take game 6 in the set. John S got his chance in game 7 and did not miss. He takes game 7 and a 5-2 set win that evened up the match at 7 points each.
John Sr started where he left off in the previous set. With missed shots and open leaves, John Sr nailed a 2-10 quick win in game 1 to start the 10 Ball Set. He continued with his momentum in making balls and he notched game 2 before Scott & Scott got on the board. The momentum seemed to change in favor of Just Another Bye Week as John Sr & Jr stalled a bit, missing some golden opportunities. Scott M nailed 5 balls to win game 3 and it was all down hill for The Johns at that point. With missed shots, Scott K started to get some good starting chances and made good. He posted wins in games 4, 5, 6 & closed out the set as Just Another Bye Week swept the rest of the set. This gave Bye Week a 5-2 win and take the set by 3 points. It was a very good match as both teams shot well throughout the 21 games that were played.
Table 2: Bull Dogs (12) vs (13) Double D:
This match would almost go the distance with the teams going back and forth and battled right to the end of the match. Doug has been shooting well the last several weeks with Dave playing some great supporting role with great safety play in their matches. Doug got Double D started with a game one winner. Jim from Bull Dogs ran 3 balls and out in game 2 and the 8 Ball Set was even. Dave got into the scoring act as he ran 5 balls in game 3 with some very impressive position play to get out. Ray has been a little off his shooting eyes since coming back from surgery but seemed to be more in sync in most of the match in his third week back. Ray had a very nice run in game 4 to even the set up again. Dave continued to gain more momentum as he made three banks to close out game 5. Dave took what the table gave him making banks in two games before setting up to nail the 8 for the win. Ray stepped up to the table in game 6 and shot very well, nailing a 5 ball run to put he and Jim all even with Double D. Game 7 saw Ray get down to the last two balls and made a great long bank with some very nice position to make it two in a row for Bull Dogs, putting them on the hill. Doug got to the table in game 8 and put the game into Double D’s slot to match Bull Dogs on the hill. The momentum seemed to favor Double D as Bull Dogs missed some good chances to take the set but failed. Double D take a 5-4 set win.
Ray continued to show a bit of his shooting abilities in the 9 Ball Set as he posted back to back wins to start the set. This gave Bull Dogs a quick lead in the set. Double D continued to shoot well and when they weren’t running balls, they were playing some very good safes to hold down Bull Dogs. Dave posted the win in game 3 and Doug came back with a 2-9 combo and the set was all square. Dave & Doug continued to shoot very good and kept Bull Dogs a little off balance and out of sync. Dave continue to run balls and posted two more wins in a row. This gave Double D a four game run and put them on the hill. Ray got back into game 4 and got a chance for a decent chance on a 4-9 combo, which he promptly nailed to cut the lead to one game. The 8th game went back and forth with both teams having their fair chance to win, and it was Doug taking charge with a final 4 ball run to notch the game and the set, 5-3. This put Bull Dogs down by 3 points in the match.
Bull Dogs came out hot in the 10 Ball Set. They had their hopes set on taking at least a set in this match and both Ray and Jim seemed to get back into making balls. Ray kick started the team with a 3-10 combo to take game 1. Bull Dogs again stayed focused and Ray got his second chance to take a game and notched that in game 2. It was Jim’s chance to shine and after making a few balls he got his chance at a combo. Jim notched and 8-10 taking a 3 game lead in the set. Jim wasn’t done yet as he took advantage of a missed chance by Double D. He put Bull Dogs on the hill with a 4-0 lead. All of a sudden, the tide changed and Bull Dogs found themselves missing some open chances to close out the set. Doug notched a 4 ball run in game 5 and the charge by Double D was on. Dave followed Doug’s lead with another nice run and the win in game 6. Doug and Dave have climbed back into the set. Dave continued to play well and nailed a 5 ball run to close the gap to 1 game with the win in game 7. Double D left three balls on the table in game 8, and gave Ray from Bull Dogs the opportunity to get out. With a nice long shot to start, Ray was able to find good positions to notch the final three balls to capture the final set, 5-3. This turned into a 1 point match in favor of Double D. Good match and shooting by all four players.
Table 3: English Majors (13) vs (10) The Two Old Guys:
This would be another close match with four very good shooters going back and forth throughout the 23 games that were played. Peter has sharpened up his game, playing more offense now but hasn’t slowed down in his ability to live up to his name, Pete ‘The Hook’ Ramonat. Peter got The Two Old Guys on the score sheet first making some very nice shot making in his 4 ball run in game 1. It is hard to hold down two of the better shooters in the league as Victor posted a 5 ball run to get the Majors even with The Two Old Guys. The momentum continued to favor the Majors as Jim got them the second win in a row. Victor followed Jimmy with another nice run and just like that, the English Majors took a 3-1 lead. A couple of misses, some nice shot making and a bit of luck seemed to follow The Two Old Guys in their quest to catch up in the 8 Ball Set. Peter again got a chance and nailed the winner in game 5. A few more misses by the Majors gave Mike more scoring chances to get back into the set. He nailed the winner in game 6 and evened up the set. It was Peter again coming through in game 7 to put he and Mike on the hill. English Majors got one more chance to catch up in game 8, but a few misses kept the door open for The Two Old Guys. Mike capitalized on the misses and finished off the set winning game 8. This gave Peter & Mike a 5-3 win in the set.
The 9 Ball Set would go all 9 games and turn this match into a 1 point lead. The Two Old Guys got the first win as Mike coming off the last set seemed to still be on. Jim from the Majors came right behind Mike with a 5 ball run to even up the set at 1 game each. Mike continued to stay hot with his partner using his hiding skills to keep the Majors from getting too many good starting positions. Mike notched the win in game 3 with a 3 ball finish and then nailed a 2-9 combo for a quicker win in game 4, taking a 3-1 lead. A few mistakes opened up the doors for the Majors and with the shooting skills of both players the match changed quickly. Jimmy nailed back to back wins in game 5 & 6 and when he was playing safeties, Victor was jumping in and making shots. With the third game in a row, English Majors emerged on the hill with the win in game 7. Peter continued to hold off the Majors with some pivotal hooks or blocks and Mike took care of the game. With the win in game 8, this put Peter and Mike on the hill with the Majors. After some back and forth safety play, English Majors got the chance to take the set and nailed the win in game 9. The Two Old had a 1 point lead in the match.
The first three games in the 10 Ball Set were all wins by combinations shots. Victor started the run with a 6-10 and followed that win with a 3-10 in game 2. Jim contributed with a wide open 5-10 win in game 3 and so far The Two Old Guys could not get on the score sheet. Victor got English Majors to the hill with a 5 ball finish in game 4 and a huge lead in the set. The Two Old Guys finally got a chance and Mike took charge in game 5. He made 4 balls to finish off the game but the momentum continued to favor the English Majors. Jimmy put on the final touches in game 6 as he nailed the win and the set, 5-1. This gave the Majors their 7th straight win and increased their lead in the standing as Reckless was being beaten by their opponents. Great shooting by all four players in a very good match.
Table 4: Zenith (15) vs (09) Reckless:
The 8 Ball Set started out as a one sided affair for Reckless. Matt was unstoppable, making several clutch shots with Jim keeping Walter and his sub Todd with little to no shots to start out the set. Matt made several nice runs, as he and Jim took the first four games in the set. Walter and Todd could not get anything going as both Jim and Matt both notched balls and when they could not make one, they played some admirable safes. Never give up, never say die is what Zenith decided as they trailed by so much in the set. Todd got the best chance to start a comeback in game 5 as he made 4 ball to finish the game. Reckless again stalled some in game 6, which Todd promptly capped off with a win. Zenith now only trailed by 2 games and still had hope with Walter coming to the table in game 7. Walter suddenly put it all together, taking advantage of every miss by Reckless. Walter capped off a 6 ball run in game 7, finished off game 8 after a few misses by Matt & Jim and made the comeback of the match as he closed out game 9 to take the set out from under Reckless. Great 5 game run to comeback and win 5-4.
Walter & Todd continued to play extremely well and got a quick jump in the 9 Ball Set. Walter continued to have some long runs making some nice shots along the way. Zenith notched wins in the first three games of the set with Walter nailing a 4-9 combination shot in game 3. With the momentum still in Zenith’s corner, Jim finally got a chance to get Reckless on the score sheet. Jim posted a 5 ball run to get out in game 4 and cut the lead to 2 games. That would be all that Zenith would relinquish in this set. Walter nailed a win in game 5 and Todd followed his lead with a 2-9 combo to end the set and take a 5 point lead in the match.
Again Zenith got off to a very nice start in the 10 Ball Set with the opening two wins. Todd started with the first win pumping in 3 balls and partner Walter nailed game 2. Jim stopped the 4 game run by Zenith as he notched a 7-10 combo putting Reckless on the score sheet in game 3. Walter made quick work of game 4 as he nailed a 1-10 combo and notched the win in game 5 to put Zenith ahead by 3 games. Then Jim who has been somewhat quiet through made a 3 ball run in game 6. He continued with his momentum posting 4 balls and out in game 7 and Reckless only trailed by a game. While Jim held off Zenith with some very tough leaves, Matt stepped up with a 5 ball run to even the set as Reckless made a three game run and hit the hill. Even though the momentum seemed to change in Reckless’ favor, Walt had his mind made up that he wanted the set more than Jim or Matt. With some great shots and pinpoint position, Walter nailed game 9 and Zenith took the third set with a 5-4 set win. Zenith made what could have been disaster into a winning match. Zenith moves up the leader board into 3rd place. Great shooting by Zenith and good try by Reckless whose streak of 15 points ends at 4 matches.
Tips and Tricks:
Part I: Pocket Blockers” ILLUSTRATED PRINCIPLES David Alciatore, PhD (“Dr. Dave”)
The topic for this month is how to deal with various pocket-blocker situations that can come up in 8-ball. It is very common for balls to be blocking pockets in 8-ball, especially on a “bar box” that has limited “real estate” for 15 balls.
To read more follow the link below.