Silver Fox Tour Finale Wraps Up A 2nd Successful Season!
In early 2015, Stan “The Silver Fox” Tunis passed away at the age of 89. His loss was significant to the local billiard community because Stan had been an avid snooker and pool player for much of his life, and an even more avid billiard fan, right until his final days. Stan could be found at pool halls all over Halifax-Dartmouth, wherever the billiard heavy weights were duking it out, he was there to watch. One of his favorite players to watch, be it snooker or pool, was Colin Maloney. Stan would often watch Colin even as he practiced alone at Burnside Snooker Club.
So, in the spring of 2015, Colin came up with the idea to have a team tournament to pay tribute to his friend Stan, and so was born the Silver Fox Tour. The purpose behind the tour was to bring together players of all skill levels, forming three person teams, competing in handicapped 9-Ball races that gave everyone a shot at winning. In year one there was to be 5 events, with a grand finale event. At the time, pool participation in Nova Scotia was fledgling, however, Colin was able to get 48 players to participate in his first event, in the summer nonetheless. Great players came. Less than great players came too. And lots of friends of Stan came to play. The atmosphere was filled with energy and enthusiasm that had not been present at Nova Scotia events for some time. It was the shot in the arm the billiard community needed.
The first year was a resounding success with 5 tour events that averaged 15-16 teams. The finale event was also a great success with 20+ teams.
Skip ahead one year. 2016 saw 6 regular Silver Fox Tour events, that qualified players to participate in the year ending event, with $1500 added, which was held December 10th at Portland Street Dooly’s. There was team representation from Yarmouth, Bridgewater, Windsor, Truro and Cape Breton, as well as many from Metro Halifax area. Female participation made up 1/5th of the field, and approximately half the field were handicaps 4's, 3's, and 2’s, the other half being 5’s and above. Clearly the tour appeals to all level of players at the same time, from all over the province, which is rare in the pool world.
The finale event is played as a double knockout, until 2 teams remain on the A-side and 2 teams remain on the B-side. These teams are then redrawn for a single life final 4 stage. In one Semi-final, it was team Shotz, consisting of Brian White (8 handicap), Percy Gouchie (5), and Nok Mantolino (6), versus team New England, Wayne Thibodeau (6), Davis Atkinson (6), and Calvino Andreson (5). The two teams had met earlier in the tournament with Shotz coming out on top, but this time, New England pulled through with the win to advance to the final. In the other semi-final, it was also a rematch of teams that had previously met. In their first encounter team Cold Shotz, Mark Fraser (4), Dustin Reaney (4), and Darrell Abolit (4) had won over team Yeo-Yeo, Christa Yeo (2), Mark Yeo (5) and TJ Martin (6). In the semi final meeting, it was team Yeo-Yeo that moved through to the final match.
In the final, team New England outlasted team Yeo-Yeo to earn the victory. Teams Shotz and Cold Shotz decided to forgo the match to decide the 3rd place team, instead splitting the 3rd and 4th place cash.
All the remaining teams were eligible to buy back in for a single knockout second chance. This event was dominated by ladies! When things settled down to the final 4, it was team JaJeBri, Jen Rowden (2), Janet Ritcey (4), and Brian Bedford (6), taking on team Club Q, Dale Brimicombe (7), Wayne Bishop (5), and Ryan MacKenzie (5). Team JaJeBri was victorious, powered again by a solid performance from Jen Rowden, who beat Dale Brimicombe (7) for the second time on the day, to go with previous wins over Colin Maloney (8) and Craig Teal (6). The other match to determine a finalist saw team Absinthe, Shauna Boyle (2), Rob Grandy (3), and Darlene Seward (2) come out victorious over team Bridgewater, Chess Harlow (5), Ferrell Walker (3) and Abe Younis (3). The story here, again, was the ladies, with Shauna and Darlene pulling through with victories in their matches to send them through to the final. The final match saw team JaJeBri come out on top over team Absinthe.
That wrapped up another successful season of Silver Fox Tour events. Look for 2017 events to start in the June time frame. Colin Maloney should be proud that he has created and maintained a series of events that has not only served to keep the memory of Stan Tunis in everyone’s thoughts, but that the tour is appreciated by such a cross section of the pool community, and was instrumental in driving the upswing in pool participation that Nova Scotia is enjoying right now.