Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Austin,Texas Fast Eddies Tournament July 2006

As I wrote in my previous blog, I noted/noticed I needed to work on focusing in my matches. Well, I had a tournament in Austin, Texas July 9th at Fast Eddie's Billiards. I had one goal for the tournament: focus in my matches. As I was walking to my first match, I ran into a friend of mine. I know that it's good to say goals out loud, so I took advantage of seeing him and told him of my goal to focus in my match. He said without batting an eye, skipping a beat, or even looking at me, "that's tough to do."

Then he told me what he does. He said he focuses in his matches by looking at on an object on the table, like a piece of chalk or a ball or a spot, etc. It sounded like a great suggestion! As I reflect back now, I realized I had a goal but hadn't thought through in my mind how I would try to accomplish that goal - which I forgot is a key part of setting goals! Well, my friend was able to help me out in that department and he also helped me remember to not only set goals, but to plan how I can reach those goals. So, off I went to my first match. I had no expectations - I hadn't practiced since my last tournament because I have been out of town a lot for work. But, I was extremely well rested, very happy and content about everything in my life for the first time in a long, long time, and was smiling, happy, and feeling good.

My stats:

Shayla Neris 7-2. I felt like I played pretty good, but still made some mental errors and also some shot selections were not the best (almost embarrassing). I did focus fairly well, but it is a lot of work and my mind did wander a few times instead of concentrating on the very ball I was suppose to be shooting. Shayla's game is beautiful... so it was a tough match for me.

Connie 7-3. I wasn't focused as much but then got back into the game and played well. She was listening to an ipod while we played and if I made a good shot, she would say "good shot," but because she had earphones on, she didn't know how loud she was saying things. It was kind of funny.

Helen Hayes 7-3. I was nervous in the beginning playing my friend Helen, but I really tried to focus and capitalized most of the time. When it was 5-2, I started to get nervous again. I told myself to stop being nervous and tried to just "play pool" and focus. I was already thinking ahead and couldn't believe I was about to win 3 matches in a row - and all on the winner's side! I was thinking to myself who could I hug? I felt the excitement building inside of me. It had been so long since I played well, placed well, or even had desire to play pool. It felt like a beautiful sunrise.

Amanda Lampert 3-7. I think I made her nervous at first because I played good in the beginning, but she plays really good and I made a few mistakes, which you can't do against her. I scratched on a safety, and lost my wind for some reason after that and she won 5 games in a row to put me on the one-loss side. Her game is so awesome!

Teedaa Clarke 4-5. I played good and really, really enjoyed the match with her. I made a few crucial errors (hit a 9-ball too hard and didn't even make contact with a 6-ball in the final game), but overall I felt good and it was a very memorable match for me that I will learn from.

I placed 5th/6th and earned $75, out of 26 women. I have another tournament in Austin this weekend coming up. My goal will be to focus again. It will be on 9-foot tables and today I practiced straight pool after work for about 2 hours on a 9-foot table. My highest run was 15 today. I didn't feel like I played well, but straight pool isn't an easy game for me right now.

'Til next time.

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