Skyler Woodward further cemented a developing reputation as one of the country’s premier 9-ball players with a solid, undefeated performance in the Smokin’ Aces Bar Box 9-Ball Tournament, held on the weekend of August 16-17. With a $2,000 entry fee, a $20,000 first-place prize, and races to 21, Woodward joined an A-list of 16-only entrants that included Johnny Archer, Warren Kiamco, Rodney Morris, Corey Deuel, John Morra, Robb Saez, Alex Olinger, and Shane Van Boening, who had two shots at Woodward, and failed to stop him.
As Van Boening was working his way through Morris and Saez to arrive at a winners’ side semifinal against Morra, Woodward was busy with Jonathan Pinegar and Kiamco, which set him up to face Shane Winters. Van Boening dominated his match against Morra, defeating him 21-2. Woodward, in the meantime, defeated Shane Winters 21-9. Woodward took his first of two against Van Boening 21-18 and sat in the hot seat, waiting for him to get back from the semifinals.
Deuel and Kiamco were waiting for Winters and Morra, respectively. Deuel had defeated Eric Durbin 21-10, and Saez 21-16. Kiamco had ended Justin Bergman’s run and eliminated Chad Vilmont, both 21-16. Deuel and Kiamco advanced to the quarterfinals; Deuel 21-12 over Winters and Kiamco surviving a long, grueling, double hill match against Morra, only one of two over the weekend (the other was Van Boening over Saez, second round, winners’ side).
Kiamco had a much easier time with Deuel in the quarterfinals, defeating him 21-5, but he never did get a second chance against Woodward, who’d defeated him in the second round. Van Boening saw to that, downing Kiamco 21-11 in the semifinals.
Both Woodward and Van Boening had their chances in the finals, with each edging out to two- and three-point leads before the other fought back to tie things. Woodward’s 19th game win, coming off the 18-18 tie was critical. Showing a lot of confidence, he dropped a three-pack on Van Boening to complete his undefeated run and claim the Smokin’ Aces Bar Box 9-Ball Open title.
The event was produced by Pool Action TV, under the direction of Ray Hansen, in collaboration with Mike McKuin, owner of Smokin’ Aces Barbeque and Billiards, and winner of the 2012 World Poker Open. The event was streamed on Pool Action TV throughout the weekend, with primary commentating from Hanson and Scott Rabon. Hansen thanked McKuin and his staff, as well as sponsors Pat DeViveney Cues, Mitchell Thomas Cues, Jumpin Jax Cues, Lemons Coin Machines, Roger Alford Heating and Cooling, Faries Construction, and Manny Perez of FundManny.com.