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First-year pool league is a big hit

By By Marty Stamper / EMG sports assistant
Aug. 8, 2003
With names like Rat Cats, Racketeers, Knight Owls, Shoppe Shooters, Marion Shop Shooters, Billiard Boppers, 8 R Us, Smooth Strokers, Duck Shooters, and Echos Gecko, you may not know what they are or what they're doing, but you can tell they're having fun whatever it is.
What these 10 teams have been doing for the last two months is shooting pool, 8-ball style.
Not just any pool, but team pool.
Roger Jordan is the local American Poolplayers Association's (APA) league founder along with his wife, Belinda. The league is for amateur poolplayers at least 21 years old.
A longtime poolplayer, Jordan's only wish is that the league had been around a lot longer.
had never played in a league before," Jordan said. "The first year, his team qualified for the Nationals at Las Vegas, so he got the full experience. When he got back, he called me and said we needed to do this.
Ten teams have played in the summer session at various establishments in Lauderdale County. Each team has seven to eight players. Five play in each night's action.
So great is the interest that Jordan plans on opening a league in Philadelphia in September.
Philadelphia's league will play on Wednesdays, while the current Meridian league plays on Tuesdays. Players may compete in both leagues.
And Meridian may very well go to two nights a week this fall due to the amount of interest.
The Meridian area team winner will be eligible to play in the National Championships in Las Vegas.
You don't have to worry about hustlers in the APA league.
Another thing that has made the league popular is players are handicapped using the Equalizer Handicap System based on their skill level.
Under the Equalizer, players are handicapped from 2 to 7, with 7 being the highest.
That means for the 7 to win his match, he must win six games before the 3 player wins two games.
If a 2 played a 4, the 2 would win the match if he won two games before the 4 wins four games. If a 7 plays a 7, the first one to win five games would take the match.
to win that last game to win the match.
The deadline for players wishing to enter the fall league is Aug. 31. They may do so by contacting Jordan at 601-479-3008.
Players must be 21 years of age to compete. They may join APA on their 21st birthday and become eligible. APA is the world's largest amateur pool league with over 215,000 members.