WPBA Qualifying Round Underway

WPBA Qualifying Round Underway
by Skip Maloney
With the GenerationPool.com 9-Ball Championship kicking off Sunday, the 64-player women’s field began Friday to whittle down to 32. The Women’s Professional Billiard Association (WPBA), in order to allow 64 of its members to compete, sanctioned a double-elimination set of elimination rounds hosted by Smokin’ Cues in Charlotte, NC. The event will move to the city’s convention center for the main event.
All four of the top place finishers in April’s WPBA Classic in California advanced on Friday night. Fisher, Gerda Hofstatter, Kim and Corr all moved into the second round with defeats of Susan Mello, Vicki Paski, Candi Rego, and Helen Caukin, respectively. Of the four, only Kim allowed an opponent more than four racks, with a narrow 9-7 victory. Hofstatter sent Paski westward with a 9-1 victory.
In all, three of the opening round matches ended up in 9-1 victories. Ewa Laurance’s 9-1 defeat of Lisa D’Atri set up a Saturday match between Laurence and Fisher, while Dawn Hopkins’ defeat of Nicole Keeney paved the way for a Hopkins match-up against Vivian Villareal. Only Jeannette Lee advanced to the second round with a shut-out victory over her opponent, Denise Wilkinson.
In spite of the fact that one-third of the matches ended up in hill-hill battles or 9-7 victories, it was a fairly decisive opening round of play for the women who advanced to the second round on the winners’ side. On average, they kept their opponents to just under 5 wins per match. Among the hill-hill battles were Anna Kostanian’s defeat of Katie Cowan and Hazel Cook’s defeat of Melissa Herndon, which has set up a second-round match between Kostanian and Cook.
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