New Champions Crowned in Galveston

Korean phenom, Yu Ram Cha, certainly had her work cut out for her going into day 5 of the Women’s Pro 9-Ball Tournament at the Galveston World Classic, but would prove to be up for the challenge. Cha had suffered a loss in early rounds to Allison Fisher but would have her chance at revenge. After taking down the former European Champion, Line Kjorsvik, Cha would have to beat Fisher twice in this true double elimination tournament.

Fisher, Cha and Kjorsvik pose with their new-found hardware that they picked up at the Women's Pro 9-Ball at the Galveston World Classic.

Fisher, Cha and Kjorsvik pose with their new-found hardware that they picked up at the Women's Pro 9-Ball at the Galveston World Classic.

Taking an early lead at 4-0 in this race to 9, Cha seemed to be very much in control of the match. However, in the winner break format, you can never count Fisher out. Fisher finally got a good look at the table and closed Cha’s lead to 6-5. It would be all Cha from that point on as she went on to win 10 games in a row, closing out the first set 9-5 and running thru the beginning of the second set 6-0. It looked as if Cha would shut Fisher out in the second race, which was a race to 7, but she had an unfortunate scratch on the 9ball to give Fisher her only game in that set. Yu Ram Cha won her first major title in the U.S. and pocketed $6,000 for her efforts this week as Fisher would take home $3,000 for second.

Although there were only two matches in the One-Pocket division, they were matches that will surely be remembered. Cliff Joyner defeated the aggressive, John Macias in the first match of the day and would wait to see which former one-pocket champion he would face next in the semi finals. On the winners’ side, Shannon Daulton played a near perfect match as he and Efren Reyes executed one magnificent shot after another in their quest for the hot-seat. Shannon was well on his way to a shut out but in game 3 when both players were tied at 7 balls, Daulton missed a bank on the final ball which had a little too much speed which opened up a tough cut shot for Reyes. Reyes made it look effortless as he cut in his final ball to close Daulton’s lead to 2-1. Daulton went on to win the match 3-1 and will face the winner of Efren Reyes and Cliff Joyner on Thursday.

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On the Amateur side, local favorite, Nick Hood, has a great tournament but would have to settle for 4th place as he was eliminated by Josh O’Neal of Tennessee. O’Neal would go on to face another Houston local, Shane Manaole, and was eliminated in 3rd place. Manaole would have his shot at revenge on Justin Hall in the finals as Hall was Manaole’s only loss which happened in the finals of the winners’ bracket. This final match which was worth a $5,000 difference in prize money, would be no different than their first meeting as Justin Hall put Manaole away to earn his first major title and $10,000 for first place. Manaole would have to settle for $5,000.

In preparation for the Open 10-Ball event that will begin on Wednesday, the Open 8-Ball event was a marathon of matches as many players finished up to 6 matches on Tuesday. The final four on the winners side will match up Wednesday morning. Ronnie Alcano will face Larry Nevel and Roberto Gomez will play Goh Takami. Top players who are already eliminated include Stevie Moore, Mika Immonen, Ronnie Wiseman, Shannon Daulton, Raj Hundal, Charlie Williams, Jeremy Jones, Earl Strickland, Oscar Dominguez and Warren Kiamco.

The challenge match for Wednesday is Gabe Owen versus Scott Frost in a race to 6 format in one pocket.