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Viking Championship: And the Winner is?
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Viking Championship: And the Winner is? - 03-05-2005, 05:49 AM

I just checked out the brackets of the Viking championship tournament, which ends tomorrow.

One of the feature matches coming up: Ronnie Wiseman vs. Earl Strickland! I'll guarantee ya', both players will be resting up before this match, preparing for battle. Ronnie will be dressed to the nines, and Earl is looking to defend his title from last year. Whoever wins this set will have a pretty good shot at being in the finals (IMO).

I heard it through the grapevine that Shawn Putnam is hitting 'em with confidence and authority. After his recent first-place win at the NAOT event in Pittsburgh, the "Love Sponge" is on a roll. Always a strong breaker, Shawn's a veteran and very strong competitor, and he's VERY comfortable playing on this equipment. He's due to play Jamie Baraks next. I like Shawn to win the set.

And then there's Shannon "The Cannon" Daulton getting ready to duke it out with Troy Frank. Shannon may be the favorite in this match. However, I would NEVER rule out Troy Frank. I've seen him smack down quite a few heavy-hitters. The break will be the determining factor for Troy. He's got to take advantage of every opportunity at the table because of Shannon's huge break domination in any event he competes in.

Niels Feijen and Jeff Abernathy? Gotta like Niels all the way, as I think he's the heavy favorite.

Cheers to Mike Janis for pulling off another successful major event on the tournament trail. I'm looking forward to reading all about it!

JAM


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03-05-2005, 06:41 AM

Yowser! I just checked the brackets. Super-strong field they assembled.

Nice to see John Kucharo playing.
  
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03-05-2005, 06:51 AM

Its good to see Leil Gay having a great tournament. He's a great player.


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03-05-2005, 10:33 AM

Yes JAM ~ It has been riveting play!

The matches last night were strong with the nail biter being between Troy Frank VS Shannon "The Cannon" Daulton. It was like watching a tennis match with the ball going back and forth with Shannon finally taking the win.

Another match and probably the best of the night, was between Ronnie Weisman and Mark Jarvis. They both played phenomenal, with Weisman coming back and taking the match from Jarvis.

Strickland's match was a 45 minute piece of cake. He played James Oswalt, (a hometown guy and friend of mine) and pretty much didn't give Oswalt much table time as he ran rack after rack on him.

Earlier in the night Larry Nevel defeated his opponent (Matlock, first name escapes me) 2 -11.

Other matches included:

Charlie "Hillbilly" Bryant against Shawn Putnam. Shawn played exceptional and is still on fire since his lat win at The North American Hilton tour, as Charlie struggled some. I expect Shawn to do very well in this tournament and for Charlie to come back with a vengeance.

John Macias VS Tom Stathis JR was another good match to see. The outcome of that was 11-9 Macias.

Tom Spencer won over Willie Munson. They are good old friends as Tom stated and really just liked playing each other.

John Schmidt won over Mike Bandy

Ike Runnels over Gordy Vanderveer Both Chicago natives 11-4

Neils Feijen over local Eddie Baldares

And finally Neal Jacobs (another hometown guy) VS Jon Kucharo. Kucharo won
11-7.

The players auction (1 of them) was called at ! AM last night after the last match. There will be another auction after 10:00 PM tonight.

Brandon Ashcroft won the Viking cue raffle, a $600 value

The play begins again this morning at 10AM with 2 rounds of the losers side.

I will be back to the tournament site at Palace billiards in Villa Park, IL after 6PM tonight for the winners matches..

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03-05-2005, 02:21 PM

Great report, Eydie! Let us know about the Wiseman vs. Strickland match. That's going to be a feature exhibition!

Thanks for the update!

JAM


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JR (lLeil Gay) - 03-05-2005, 02:33 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackjack
Its good to see Leil Gay having a great tournament. He's a great player.
Agreed. He has the high run at a NE Ohio hall in straight pool (300+). Ran 200+ either the day before or after. A real joy to watch in straight pool.

He is legendary around Cleveland. Do you know him from his younger days when he travelled?
  
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03-05-2005, 03:43 PM

Photo of Leil Gay taken at 2003 Carolinas Open!

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03-05-2005, 04:14 PM

I think he has been wearing the same shirt, it must be his lucky one. He reminds me of Cheech of Cheech and Chong...

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03-05-2005, 05:40 PM

Good to see Ernesto Contreras having a good tournament too. He is a strong player out of Chicago. Last time I saw him play about a year back he looked like a strong shortstop, but he must have really picked his game up to take John Schmidt to the hill!
  
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03-05-2005, 07:49 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by IronDon55
Agreed. He has the high run at a NE Ohio hall in straight pool (300+). Ran 200+ either the day before or after. A real joy to watch in straight pool.

He is legendary around Cleveland. Do you know him from his younger days when he travelled?
The last time I saw Leil he was working at BJ's in Cleveland (that was in 2001 or 2002). Leil is one of the greatest straight pool players, greatest one pocket players I have ever played against. He always plays tough. I've also seen that shirt before!!!


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03-06-2005, 05:07 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackjack
The last time I saw Leil he was working at BJ's in Cleveland (that was in 2001 or 2002). Leil is one of the greatest straight pool players, greatest one pocket players I have ever played against. He always plays tough. I've also seen that shirt before!!!
Then that's definitely Leil's lucky shirt (IMO).

About John Schmidt, he's one of the toughest competitors on the face of the earth in these times. Didn't John Schmidt win the Reno Open 2 years ago? I guess since he already has this championship title, he decided to not go to Reno this year and wanted to take a shot at the Viking Championship title. Because of John's strong Reno win, he was selected to compete with seven other players at an ESPN Zone 7-Ball competition. I think Bustie won it that year, if memory serves me right.

So far, it looks like Earl is defending his title at the Viking Championship, but as we all know, ANYTHING can happen in a tournament with a short race.

Picture of Troy Frank and John Schmidt, taken at the 2003 U.S. Open. Both of them are at the Viking Championship tournament, and both of them sure do have GREAT smiles for the camera!

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Tonight's the night!
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Tonight's the night! - 03-06-2005, 06:57 AM

Well, I just posted up my dough with the V-Bookie!

Lots of possibilities, and the first-place win is up for grabs!

JAM


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The Pearl's OUT!
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The Pearl's OUT! - 03-06-2005, 04:29 PM

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Originally Posted by JAM
Well, I just posted up my dough with the V-Bookie!

Lots of possibilities, and the first-place win is up for grabs!
Yep, I couldn't believe when I heard it, but Earl Strickland is out of the Viking tournament. Hope to hear an update about the match!

Ike Runnels was down big time to Little John, but managed to kick it up a gear and won the set. Folks on the rail said it was a thrilling exhibition of topnotch pool on both players' parts.

AND best of all, my horse, Niels Feijen, is still in the race. However, upon hearing of his excellent play and advancing the charts, I also heard he's suffering from a bout of the flu. Hopefully, the Dutchman will still be able to hobble into the winner's circle for my V-cash!

Picture of Ike Runnels below at last year's U.S. Open.

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03-06-2005, 09:05 PM

Hey JAM ~ Thanks for helping me report from the Viking tournament.

I am working on a huge write up on it, so stay tuned for a new post!

Eydie


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03-07-2005, 04:39 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by sjm
Yowser! I just checked the brackets. Super-strong field they assembled.

Nice to see John Kucharo playing.
I agree.....I was surprised to see Jon's name in the final results. Great to see that he is back on the pool track!!
  
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