Bob Andrews of Delta has spent about 20 years driving back and forth from York County to various places in Maryland to play pool. Last year, the American Poolplayers Association established an official league in York County for the 2010-11 season and Andrews was more than a little excited.
“Maryland probably has the most number of teams and leagues in the nation. They’ll be sending 22 teams of players to the national championships. In our first season here in York County, our APA league had 50 total teams, which is pretty good for the inaugural year. It was a great thing to be able to compete right here at home,” Andrews said.
Andrews and his “Bob Andrews Team” made the most of their chance by winning the first York County APA 8-ball title on June 5th at the Red Rose Restaurant & Lounge in Hellam Township.
With the victory, Andrews and his seven teammates qualified for the APA’s National Team Championships, which will be held Aug. 21st-27th at the Riviera Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas.
“This will be our team’s second time at nationals,” said Delta’s Ralph Grafton, another veteran player. “We went in 2001 when we played in a Maryland league. We lost both of our matches in a fifth and deciding game during our first visit to Vegas.”
The Bob Andrews Team took part in a local season that was broken into three 16-week sessions. “We received a $4,750 prize fund for winning the league title,” Bob Andrews said. “We have eight players, and it cost us $455 per person for airfare and hotel accommodations, so our trip was covered, and we got $148 in spending money, too.”
$600,000 in cash and prizes is on the line in Vegas. With over 700 teams competing at the Nationals, the York County APA team champions will have a lot of competition. “It’s very intense and somewhat overwhelming in Vegas,” Ralph Grafton said
“We’re a team of people who’ve been playing this game a long time,” Bob Andrews said. “When we get to Las Vegas, we’d like to make it to the next money bracket. To do that, we’ll have to win four or five matches, which would get us somewhere into the top 198 teams in the country.”
We wish the best of luck to The Bob Andrews Team. Go get ‘em in Vegas!
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