It wasn't as sunny as the 9-ball tourneys have been in the past at Chinook Winds Casino Resort, Lincoln City, Oregon. As a matter of fact a storm surge knocked out the lights once and held up matches for a bit, but who cares when the passion is being fed. The 2005 Western BCA Regional 9-Ball Championships saw 496 members with 893 entries and exactly $42,000 in total prize money. Besides Master mixed scotch doubles, each division increased. Most notable were the women's and men's Open singles with a 17 and 39 increase respectively. Men's teams had 33 more entries than last year.
Chinook Winds was a gracious host as always. Gary Benson of High Country Promotions supplied the tables and ran the brackets with his usual professionalism and added money to the second chance tournaments and mini-tournament's that ran whenever possible. Nationally-certified referees Rick Doner, John Cundiff, Pat Mowdy, Cecil Picket and head referee Daryl Farley all deserve a big thank you; they worked long hours with little pay in a hurry up and wait situation. Western BCAs secretary Joyce Gumm worked 25 hours a day prior to and during the event and still managed to cash in singles. Congratulations and thank you, Joyce. Vanessa Schwab, the association's web and print designer avoided homework by designing the shirts and working the sales booth. Other big time volunteers at the regionals were Cindy Rosenthal, Stacy Sherman and Kurt Hamm.
Kris Robbins and Russ Cearley started off the champions of Western BCAs Master mixed scotch doubles undefeated and planned for singles by earning their champion status well before midnight over Liz Cole and Mike Deitchman. Now Kris' collection of champion plaques is complete as she has one from each event of singles, team and mixed scotch doubles. Shirley Morgan and Steve Myers persevered through a tough struggle against the Linda and Michael Knight, who did the best anyone can do by going hill to hill in the second match in their attempt to double-dip the point sitters that finished at 3:30 a.m. in the Open mixed scotch doubles.
In the Open singles event, it was a big ol' double scoop cone with paid entries into BCA Pool Leagues national championships in May 2006 sprinkled on top that fired up the losers bracket to overcome the points. Congratulations to Melissa Rushton in the women's Open and Steve Gregg in the men's Open and who both said they will use the paid entries. Runners up are Melanie Elder and Robert Niemeyer. Rounding out the new Masters in the women's was Wendy (a.k.a. "Mom") Schelske.
Though the potential was there, the Master singles didn't order any double-dipped cones as both the "A" bracket sitters took this year's 9-ball championship titles. Carissa Biggs and Pat Schumacher are taking home the plaques as Cindy Doty and Glenn Atwell accept runner up. Notice how Cindy Doty's Northwest Players League took every cash spot of the women's Master singles.
Second chance tournaments were offered for all events. The Master and Open women combined for one handicapped event of 16 entries with $225 going to Natalie Seal. Men's Masters saw eight entries of their own with Russ Cearley the winner of $125. In the men's Open second chance tournament with 64 entries, Todd Speakman went undefeated and walked away with $500. The second chance tournaments are only available to those who entered singles, but did not get in the money.
As if running 34 mini's wasn't enough, Andrew Monstis organized the association's first ever ring game. It was a huge success with 10 people paying $100 each. Jason Marcoulier, Russ Cearley, Shad Pantle, Jim Drey, Chad Bisconner, Ivan Doty, Mike Stevens, Jeff Jerome, Harold Prine and Scott Chandler all ponied up the dough. Unfortunately, Schumacher and Atwell were still playing their singles match. The format was much like what has been seen at the BCAPL 9-ball nationals and the Derby City Open thanks to Mark Griffin. $1000 was on the line and each player wanted to make it from the starting two tables to the one with four. Mike Stevens, Jeff Jerome, Harold Prine and Scott Chandler got the rolls as ring games see. With team event starting in the morning, Harold and Scott decided to split after Mike and Jeff dropped due to lack of financing. Because of its success with the players and the spectators a ring game will be organized at future events whenever possible.
The 2005 regional 9-ball tournament was running smoothly and teams kicked it in high gear with upsets, cakewalks and nail biters. On one side of the room one could hear nothing but expletives towards the game and across the room devotion with every beat of their heart and the only game their cue will ever play. It's 9-ball and "9-ball happened". Each team that won the point got dipped by a team with a vengeance. In the women's, it was last year's winners, the Noti Heartbreakers of Kris Robbins, Bonnie Mahaffey and Denise Vaughn, and in the men's, The Breakroom with Darold Crain, Brent Baker and Ken Cavener that came back from the "B" side with a roar. It was a good year for Carissa and the On The Wire gang as she took women's Master singles and her team of Ann Brandt and Cathy Duenas accepted runner up in the team event. After years of prodding, Mike Grimm, David Faulk, Larry McKenzie and the Master Gary French had an excellent showing at their first Western BCA event by walking away with second place.
Congratulations to all participants for a fine event!