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HUNTER CLASSICS AMATEUR WOMEN'S TOUR Lloyd Crowned Twice at One Tournament

See all the photos from this event!  Click here.

Heather Lloyd wrapped up the 2006 Hunter Classics Amateur Women's Tour with the 'Daily Double' – she captured first place at the Hunter Classics Tour season finale and also the Hunter Classics Tour Champion title!  Heather explained after the tournament, "I am shocked I won because the field was so strong.  I am honored to have such wonderful and talented women around me.  I appreciate them and am fortunate to be around such a wonderful group of women.”


Heather and FOX TV

Jerry Williams, owner of Bogies Billiards and Games in Houston, Texas, was an exceptional host, supporting the ladies, watching matches all weekend long, and adding additional money on Sunday to the second chance tournament.  Bogies Billiards is conveniently located with lots of hotel and restaurants nearby and also close to the Houston Intercontinental Airport.  Bogies Billiards has 24 eight-foot tables, lots of room, and a wonderful and amazing atmosphere.  John Rizo, the manager, and Bonnie, the bartender (and John's wife), were also very supportive and welcoming to the ladies all weekend long. 

Local FOX TV affiliate in Houston arrived Sunday to cover the tournament and WPBA President Kim White (and Hunter Tour Champion of 2000) was able to join the ladies and give autographs both Saturday and Sunday.  She described to FOX TV the importance of the regional women's tours and explained the passion of the game of 9-ball.  In addition, Kim was able to join FOX TV's 30-minute Sunday night live sports broadcast. 

Many awards are presented at the season finale tournament, including the coveted Most Improved Player.  It was a tough decision for the board with candidates like Cristina De La Garza and Tara McCracken, but Terry Petrosino shot up in the rankings from last year to 6th place this year and deservedly earned the award (along with a nice plaque).  Congratulations to all the ladies – everyone had a great year.


Terry Petrosino, Most Improved Player!

Other Award winners: 

  • Free entry drawing won by Diana Cardona.
  • Free shirt drawing won by Susan Petty.
  • Free glove certificate donated by Ellen Van Buren and Gail Grecar won by TJ Reeves.
  • Free OB-1 Cue shaft won by Diana Cardona.
  • $200 perfect attendance drawing won by Jillian Valles. 

Each person with perfect attendance (by attending all 9 stops) earned one free entry into 2007, along with the $200 drawing. 

We also crowned the Hunter Classics Tour Champion at this event.  At the beginning of the tournament on Saturday morning, Lisa Brannen was on top with a 15-point lead over Leslie Anne Rogers.  However, Heather Lloyd was also in contention being only 50 points behind Leslie Anne.  By Saturday night, the only thing for certain was that the fight was still on between Leslie Anne and Heather.  Lisa lost a hill-hill match to Jennifer Kraber in the second round and then two matches later Lisa lost 7-5 to Tara McCracken.  Leslie won her first three matches 7-1 before being sent to the one-loss side by Heather 7-3.  The points race was still on for Sunday!  

The Most Improved Player and Tour Champion will each receive all their entry fees free into the Hunter Classics Tour for 2007. 

Fifty one ladies came to compete (and have fun) at the season finale.  Ladies from as far away as Canada came to this event, but also Arkansas, New Mexico, Colorado and of course Texas.  Heather Lloyd's road to the finals started off with what would be deja vu of the finals – Heather and Tara McCracken sparred off for the first match and Heather prevailed 7-6.  Then Heather defeated Natalie Mans 7-2, Chris White 7-1 and Leslie Anne Rogers 7-3 to set herself up for the winner's side on Sunday.  Tara had the long road ahead of her after losing hill-hill to Heather her first match.  She started her climb through the one-loss side over TJ Reeves 7-2 to meet up with Lisa Brannen.  She defeated Lisa 7-5, then Shayla Neris 7-4 and Cristina Dela Garza 7-3 to last until Sunday's rounds.  

On Sunday morning, newcomer Yvette Reyes ran into Amanda Lampert and lost 7-3 while Tara defeated Kyu Yi 7-1 and Samm Diep from Colorado was derailed by Jennifer Kraber from Austin 7-2.  The other 9th-12 place match was between Marissa Hallett and Leslie Anne Rogers.  Marissa prevailed 7-6 over Leslie, but the Tour Champion title was still not known at this time.   

The winner's side matches on Sunday pitted Rachael Abbink from Canada (2006 Amateur Nationals champion) against Board Member Melinda Hinojosa.  Rachael prevailed 7-2.  The other winner's side match was being watched closely by everyone, including Leslie Anne Rogers. Heather was playing Veronique Menard also from Canada and if Heather won that match, she would have enough points to be the new Hunter Classics Tour Champion.  If she lost that match, the Hunter Classics Tour Champion spot for 2006 was still up in the air.  At 6-6, Veronique and Heather both tried to sink the 7-ball to no avail – each player was taking their time and sizing up the situation but every miss resulted in a tough shot for their opponent.  With the 8-ball already down, Heather had another chance at the 7 and missed it, but it found another pocket.  Heather then made the 9-ball for the 7-6 win, and the title of Hunter Classics Tour Champion of 2006!  

Heather's work wasn't over – she still wanted the WPBA Qualifier.  The hot seat match was close the whole time, but Heather prevailed 7-5 over Rachel Abbink.  On the one-loss side, Marissa and Jennifer placed 7th/8th and earned $105 while Melinda and Veronique placed 5th/6th and earned $160.  Veronique lost her second hill-hill match of the day this time to the sharpshooter Tara McCracken from Dallas.  

Tara then played Amanda Lampert and Tara prevailed 7-1 sending Amanda home with a 4th place finish and $275.  Tara next played Rachael Abbink and yet another hill-hill match ensued.  Tara prevailed yet again 7-6.   

The win over Rachael pitted Tara and Heather against each other in the finals.  Tara and Heather had already played each other in the very first round and here they were again – but many more eyes were on this match.  The ladies were surrounded by so much support and Tara and Heather played great for the audience!  Hill-hill once again - just like their first match.  The 4-ball was tucked behind two other balls in the final game and very tough to get to.  Tara was able to see the 4, but not make it.  Heather was again at the table, staring down what would be either the last game of the weekend, or what could lead to a second match in the double elimination tournament.  Heather was able to work around the table, trying to compose herself to what might be her second win of the season and she got perfect on the 8-ball, which was in a tough spot behind the 9-ball.  After a short pause, she leaned down, made the 8-ball and set up perfect on the 9-ball for the win!  Tara received $570 for second – a hard fought tournament!  Rachael Abbink earned $410 for her fine efforts and great play for third place and Heather Lloyd, new Hunter Classics Tour Champion, earned $750 and the Player's Choice WPBA Qualifier.  Along with Heather's title comes an invite to all WPBA events in 2007!  After the win, Heather was smiling but simply shocked she won the tournament, "I was thrilled to be in this situation. I was happy to be there competing in the finals, no matter the outcome.  It was a bonus to win the tournament."


Tara (2nd), Rachel (3rd), Heather (1st) and Amanda (4th)

The next day after the tournament, Heather stated that she "felt honored to have won the Tour Champion title and it's even more thrilling to win the tournament after that."  Heather continued, "I feel fortunate to have gotten as far as I did because the field was so strong.  I didn't think I was the favorite to win to the title - with Lisa (Brannen) and Leslie Anne (Rogers) being such tough competitors at their skills level, I didn't think I'd win the title or the tournament."  Heather then laughed and smiled, "Just, wow.  Very cool."  Asked about her match with Leslie Anne, Heather said, "I have to play my best game every time I play Leslie Anne and when we played on Saturday, I just played one ball at a time."  Heather also played well against Rachael for the hot seat, "it was an important match and it was good I played well against her - since I won, someone would have to come back and beat me twice."  

Heather continued, "I practiced a lot last week.  I have been trying to raise my game, my mental toughness and my attitude in competition.   I try to play the best that I can."  Her hard work paid off - Heather Lloyd is the new Hunter Classics Tour Champion, stopping an impressive 5-year run where Leslie Anne captured the Hunter Classics Tour Champion titles from 2001 to 2005.  Heather stated, "Her streak was an incredible accomplishment and I am honored to follow such a fantastic opponent."  

In the second chance tournament, Board Members were shooting lights out.  Monica Anderson placed 7/8, Julie Stephenson placed 2nd and Helen Hayes placed 1st.  Royce of OB-1 cue shaft added $150 to the event and Bogies Billiards added an additional $200!  Tina Lehrmann placed 3rd and Rose McCrory placed 4th.


Helen, Tina and Julie

Congratulations to all the ladies!  Everyone was gracious throughout the tournament, even with the tough competition. 

It was a wonderful, fun and exciting season finale.  Thank you to Kim White and Fox TV, Jerry Williams of Bogies Billiards, the HUGE support from our main sponsor Wes Hunter, Royce Bunnell of OB-1 Cue Shaft, Carl Miller (author of Stroke), the tournament directors, and of course, all the ladies who come to the event!!  Cuetimes provided free magazines and AZBilliards.com continues to be the Internet sponsor.

The Hunter Classics Tour is not only the largest, longest-running regional women's tour, it is also considered by many as the most enjoyable tour to attend.  The low entry fees and second chance tournaments, along with free candy and camaraderie, are legendary. 

Main Event, Complete Payouts - $2,000 added
1st Heather Lloyd, $750 + WPBA Qualifier
2nd Tara McCracken $570
3rd Rachael Abbink $410
4th Amanda Lampert $275
5th/6th Melinda Hinojosa and Veronique Menard $160
7th/8th Jennifer Kraber and Marissa Hallett $105
9th-12th Yvette Reyes, Samm Diep, Kyu Yi, and Leslie Anne Rogers $85
13th-16th Monica Anderson, Anne Mayes, Cristina Dela Garza and Courtney Peters $50
17th-24th Terry Petrosino, Jillian Valles, Shayla Neris, Tracie Voelkering, Annie Doyle, Chris White, Natalie Mans, and Belinda Lee $25 
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Second Chance Tournament, Complete Payouts, $350 added

1st Helen Hayes $190
2nd Julie Stephenson $130
3rd Tina Lehrmann $95
4th Rose McCrory $75
5th/6th Terry Petrosino and Lisa Watson $35
7th/8th Monica Anderson and Debbie Gustafson  $20
9th-12th Kathy Knuth, Susan Petty, Tracie Voelkering and Jillian Valles $10
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