Photos Courtesy of BlakeOrmand.com
On Saturday, May 16th, the OB Cues Ladies 9-Ball Tour and Slick Willie’s Burnet in Austin, TX welcomed junior players for the 2015 Texas Junior State 9-Ball Championships. Juniors from throughout the state were invited to participate and earn their spot to the Billiard Education Foundation Junior National 9-Ball Championships in Las Vegas this coming August, where they will be eligible to qualify for the WPA World Junior 9-Ball Championships.
The 14 and under division consisted of Bryan Rodriguez from Edinburg, and brothers Gabriel and Lazaro Martinez from New Braunfels. The 18 and under division was represented by Joey Bourgeois, Jr. from Baytown, Jacob Watson from Tyler, and Senate Horton from Boerne. Due to the intimate field and to increase play time, the players played a round robin race to 5 format to whittle each division to two players, then one final race to 7 set for the title. In the 14 and under division, Lazaro won both of his matches, 5-4 over Bryan and 5-3 over Gabriel to gain entry to the final round. Bryan then won over Gabriel 5-1 to earn his spot beside Lazaro. In the 18 and under division, Joey won 5-1 over Jacob and 5-3 over Senate, while Jacob won 5-1 over Senate to set up the final match between Joey and Jacob.
In the 18 and under division finals, Joey struggled to keep the momentum he had obtained in the round robin stage, and made several unforced errors to let Jacob get ahead early in the match. He continued to struggle throughout the match and Jacob continued to capitalize to take the win with a final score of 7-1.
In the 14 and under division finals, Lazaro showed play on a level much higher than his 8-years of age, executing several multiple ball run-outs to ran away with the match 7-0 against Bryan. Bryan played smart safeties in the match, but each time, Lazaro was able to escape the hook by either a good kick or a well-executed jump shot by Lazaro.
Because of the impressed skills displayed by all six participants, and the funds raised by the community, the ladies decided to sponsor the entry fee for each of the boys to participate at nationals. Congratulations, guys!
All players received prize packages including trophies donated by Rusty’s Billiards, cash, gift cards, and pool related gifts donated by Cristina Tschudi and Mz Tam. In addition to the prize packs for the players, many items were donated to raffle for the players participating in the event. Senate Horton and Jacob Watson won the two Mz Tam Custom Cases. Gabriel Martinez and Jacob won the two Premium cues donated by Omega Billiards. Bryan Rodriguez won the Cue it Up Clip, Lazaro Martinez won the Magic Rack, and Joey Bourgeois, Jr. won a billiard book, all donated by Shayla Neris. Senate also won the Kamui scuffer donated by Cristina Tschudi and Lazaro also won the Ninja Turtles piggy bank donated by Tara Williams. Also, the third place finishers received photo prize packages from Blake Ormand Photography. You can check out all the awesome action shots by Blake from the event at: http://www.blakeormand.com/Pool-Billiards/2015-Texas-Juniors/
18 & Under Division
|1st Place||Jacob Watson, age 17||Tyler, TX||Trophy, Certificate, Paid Entry to 2015 BEF Jr Natls, Cash & Sponsored Prizes|
|2nd Place||Joey Bourgeois, age 16||Baytown, TX||Trophy, Certificate, Paid Entry to 2015 BEF Jr Natls, Cash & Sponsored Prizes|
|3rd Place||Senate Horton, age 16||Boerne, TX||Trophy, Certificate, Paid Entry to 2015 BEF Jr Natls, Cash & Sponsored Prizes|
14 & Under Division
|1st Place||Lazaro Martinez, III||New Braunfels, TX||Trophy, Certificate, Paid Entry to 2015 BEF Jr Natls, Cash & Sponsored Prizes|
|2nd Place||Bryan Rodriguez||Edinburg, TX||Trophy, Certificate, Paid Entry to 2015 BEF Jr Natls, Cash & Sponsored Prizes|
|3rd Place||Gabriel Martinez||New Braunfels, TX||Trophy, Certificate, Paid Entry to 2015 BEF Jr Natls, Cash & Sponsored Prizes|
To raise funds for this event, the OB Cues Ladies raffled donated goods from our event contributors. We would like to send a big thank you to all the players and supporters of this event who helped by purchasing raffle tickets – it would not have been possible without player support!
The OB Cues Ladies 9-Ball Tour would also like to thank the following contributors for helping support the juniors in this event:
Slick Willie’s Family Pool Hall in Austin (www.slickw.com/sites/austin/8440burnet.htm)
Rusty’s Billiards in Fort Worth and Arlington (www.rustysbilliards.com)
Fort Worth Billiards Super Store (www.dfwbilliards.com)
OB Cues (www.obcues.com)
Omega Billiards (www.omegabilliards.com)
Violet Crown Realty (www.violetcrownrealty.com)
Cristina Delagarza Tschudi
Blake Ormand Photography (www.blakeormand.com)
The Billiard Education Foundation gives Special Thanks and Recognition to OB Cues Ladies 9-Ball Tour board members Shayla Neris and Tara Williams for all their efforts and hard work in making this event possible. They secured the location and all the sponsored prizes, and promoted and directed the event which would not have happened without them and their supporters. THANK YOU!!
For more information on sponsoring, hosting, or participating in a Junior State Championship, visit billiardeducation.org or call (303) 926-1039. Complete list of nationwide junior events listed here: http://billiardeducation.org/events/