On July 10th-11th, 2010, 39 players arrived at Metro Sportz Bar in Phoenix, AZ, in hopes of taking down the Desert Classic Tour Stop #5 (http://www.desertclassictour.com). The event was Bar Table 10-ball on Metro’s Valley Tables. Many of the top points leaders were on hand to try and capture this $1000 added event. New this year on the DCT was the implementation of a handicap system. The handicapping affects both the race in which the player plays too and also the entry fee to get into the event. A+ players pay $70, A players pay $50, B players pay $35 and C players pay $25. In addition, there are side pots available in numerous amounts, including one side pot just for B and below players.After the first day of play, there were 8 players returning on Sunday and had all reached the cash. On the winners side of the board there were 4 players battling to get to the hotseat. Pete Lhotka vs Tony Confalone and Chris Paradowski vs John Smith. On the one-loss side of the board you had Bobby Emmons vs Gary Koschnick and Gus Briseno vs Mitch Ellerman.
Both Winners side matches turned into great matches with matching 8 – 7 wins by Tony and John which setup a great hot seat battle. Looking back just a few months, you couldn’t find one person to predict these two names to be the final 2 on the winners’ side of an upcoming Desert Classic Tour stop. Not because they are not both great accomplished players, but because John Smith had not played in one single event on the tour and Tony hung up his cues for a couple years to finish his schooling.
Two players that have both been in the Hot Seat Match many times before, found themselves battling against each other for 7th place. Mitch Ellerman was able to run away with his match against Gus and cruised to a 10 – 3 victory. Bobby made quick work of Gary and both Gus and Gary finished in 7th/8th and $100.Mitch Ellerman forfeited his next match and for a very good reason. He received a phone call that Sara was on her way to the hospital to delivery their first child. In only a few short hours later, Mitch was able to hold his brand new baby boy! Congratulations to Sarah and Mitch on the birth of their healthy baby boy. Word on the street is he is already shooting 9 speed, is left handed and can give anyone under the age of 10 the 7 OUT. Mitch also received $125 for his 5th place finish.Chris Paradowski was the lucky recipient of the
forfeit and advanced to play Bobby Emmons in the next round after Bobby sent Pete home in 5th place with another 8 – 7 score. Chris found his stroke and ran over Bobby with an 8 – 3 score. Bobby took home $340 for 4th place.
John and Tony started the hot seat match and after a few early mistakes by Tony, John was able to jump out to a comfortable lead. The home room boy continued his dominant play and cruised to an 8 – 4 victory and guaranteed himself at least a 2nd place finish.Tony jumped over to the other side of the board and faced the hot handed Chris and the two battled back and forth. Chris reached the hill first but shortly Tony was able to tie it back up and had the break. Unfortunately for Tony he ended up hooked on the 1 ball and was forced to kick. Chris took control of the table and finished off the match. Tony took home $450 for this 3rd place finish.With Chris’s win he set up a finale rematch with John. And he would have to beat John two sets to take home the first place prize. But John was ready for him and used his strong barbox knowledge in working through many early racks and soon put the match out of reach. Chris seemed to run out of gas and rolls at this point as he tried to fight back into the match. John closed it out in the first set with a score of 8 – 4 and claimed his first DCT Title. Chris finished in his highest position as well and took home $470 for 2nd place. John received $960 for 1st place in this 5th Stop at Metro Sportz Bar in Phoenix, AZ. The next 2 events will be held right down the street at Stingers. July 31st for a B and Below 10-Ball Event and the 6th Stop on August 21st-22nd for barbox 9-ball.
1. John Smith $960
2. Chris Paradowski $470
3. Tony Confalone $450
4. Bobby Emmons $340
5/6 Mitch Ellerman $125
5/6 Pete Lhotka $125
7/8 Gary Koschnick $100
7/8 Gus Briseno $100
B/C Sidepot winners
1. Mike Hamman(split first/second) $120
Mike Bernardi (split first/second) $120
3 Todd Dilley $20 (split 3rd)
3 Ben Sutherland $20 (split 3rd)