|Runner up Jeff Dick with winner Erik Hjorleifson|
By: Erik Hjorleifson
This past weekend in London, Ontario the 4th Annual Jamie Weaver Memorial Tournament was held at Strokers Billiards. Jamie passed away at a young age but as was evident in the turnout and display of emotion, he touched many peoples lives in a positive way. I met him on a few occasions and remember him as a player that had a great love for the game and played pool with a very creative style. The tournament has grown from about 70 players in its first year, to a full field of 128 only four years later. Much of the success of the event can be attributed to Jamie's friend Anita Chan.
This is no ordinary tournament; a delicious and free homemade full spread buffet is facilitated by Anita and the Weaver family. Complimentary door prizes which are donated by Jamie's friends and family and drawn off free of charge. This is one tournament where every player truly leaves feeling like a winner and it is evident in numbers as this is also the highest tournament in terms of participation every year in Ontario. The amount of work put in by Anita, the weaver family and all of the people behind the scenes cannot be missed.
Anita would like to acknowledge Ronda from Strokers Billiards, Glen Weaver Fisheries and the Weaver family, Greg Plester who promoted the tournament and collected pre-paid entries. As well as Jeff Dick for running the Calcutta, Joe Chadwick shuttle operator, Tyler Terashita t-shirt sponsor, Anitas Daughter and her friend Jill who helped with the decorations, Heath Manning with Manning cues, Mark and Dolores Weaver who contributed $500 in added prize money and everyone who made the tournament a success.
The tournament kicked off at 7 o'clock Friday night with Jeff Dick taking on the difficult task of auctioning off the 128 player field. Jeff was a natural and raised $10 000 total prize money including the biggest bids going on myself, Rob Hall, Andy Aupin, Jeremy Bolahood, Adam Monture and many other players that went in the $100 to $200 range. Players came from all over Ontario including as far as Sudbury, Jamie's best friend and top player Greg Gauthier made the trip all the way from New Brunswick to honour his friend. After a ceremonial toast to Jamie an opening break was done by tournament organizer Anita Chan.
The format for the tournament was handicapped 9 ball with a low handicap of 4 and a high handicap of 13. Entry fees were staggered between $30-$75 and it was rack your own winner breaks format. Play was on 16 Dufferin tables with Simonis cloth and Super Aramith balls. I must say that the tables were in the best playing condition that I have seen them in since I have been going to Strokers. The first round of play was completed on Friday night, tournament directors Heath Manning and Ronda Drew Clement did a great job of filing the players through all weekend. First round casualties included Andy Aupin, last years runner up Brittany Bryant, Naomi Williams and last years winner Ken Stutz.
Saturday play began at 10:00 am and play continued on all day until about 2:00am. Match highlights included:
Ephram Day over Rob Hall
Erik Hjorleifson over Justin Kluznik
Jeff Dick over Nick Blancher
Justin Kluzik over Tom Hogan
Adam Monture over Dave Lettner
Josh Rundle over Jesse Piecey
Tyler Nearing over Dave Parker
George Phillips who defeated many good players on the day including Naomi Williams and Andy Aupin
12 players would come back on Sunday including myself vs Jeff Dick and Jeremy Bolahood vs Adam Monture on the winners side and 8 players who would start the day in 9th to 12th position. Me and Adam Monture would go on to the winners side final. The winners side final would be a memorable one with the score at 8-8 in the 13-9 race. I was able to come back and win the last 5 games for the hill-hill victory.
On the losers side Jeff Dick whose play all weekend had noticeably improved, continued his strong play when it got down to the nitty gritty defeating Pod Shognosh, Jeremy Bolahood and Adam Monture in succession. The final was a 13-8 race between my self and Jeff Dick (battle of the redheads) Big Red vs Little Red . I got off to a very strong start in this one playing close to flawless getting out to a 7-1 lead and from there Jeff was able to win two more. He played great all weekend and his table demeanor and approach to the game reminded me of a pro.
Thanks to everyone who put in the countless hours to organize this wonderful tournament, a generous sum of money was also donated to Teen Challenge with proceeds from the tournament.
1st Erik Hjorleifson $800
2nd Jeff Dick $535
3rd Adam Monture $380
4th Jeremy Bolahood $230
5th Guy Tremblay $170
7th Justin Kluznik $120
9th Craig Gould $100
13th Andy Aupin $70
Maureen Van De Ven