Suwannee Barbara Coons Open #1 June 19, 2004
Here is my report on the Suwannee Barbara Coons Open #1 horseshoe tournament held at the Suwannee Horseshoe Club in nearby Fanning Springs. The courts are located so close to the Suwannee river that in years past when the river overflows, the courts can be under water by as much as 4 to 8 feet. The courts are about 45 miles west of Gainesville, Florida.

Florida has most of their horseshoe tournaments in the fall and winter months due to the heat and almost daily afternoon thunderstorms. There is plenty of shade at the Suwannee courts and they have good blue clay from Kentucky I believe. It was a nice warm day (low 90's by the end of pitching) with very little wind. We had 6 players in the top class with an entering percentage spread of 77.7% to 67.8%. Normally in Florida the games are played to 40 or 50 shoes and with handicap when there is a large spread in averages. However, the averages were pretty close and the tournament director let us play 40 point games.

Carol Simpson and her husband moved down to Florida from Maine this past winter, but haven't made it to any tournaments until now. They don't live very close to any organized clubs, so they haven't had a chance to practice much. So even though Carol was the number one seed, she didn't pitch very well. Hopefully she will get used to heat and find a good place to practice. I had been practicing pretty well and was anxious to see how my competitive game was doing. Unfortunately my tournament game isn't doing as well as my practice game. I started out very slow in my first game, but had a decent finish to come back and win the game 45-37. The next game was my worst as neither myself or my opponent, reigning state champion Ron Deckard, could get going. I ended up winning, but only because Ron pitched worse than I did. In the 3rd game, James Adcox gave me a nice battle as he almost hit 70%, but I managed to pitch a little better in that game and won with 73%. In game 4 I pitched a little bit better yet and managed a win of 40-19. My last game of the day was against new resident Carol Simpson. She had hurt one of her toes a week or so before. This plus very little practice by her in about 9 months and she ended up throwing a lot of short shoes and a really bad game.

Not my best effort, but better than the last few tournaments that I have been in. Hopefully I can do much better in Erie, PA this weekend and even better yet in Greenville, OH on the next weekend. I still have about 6 weeks before the world championships. If I can get my game going, who knows?

When updated the complete tournament results should be on this link:
http://www.geocities.com/suwanneeriverhsc/tsr061904.txt

			Win   Loss   	Pts  	Ringer Shoe	 R%
1.Walter Ray Williams Jr	5	0	210	206	288	71.5
2.Robert Zumbahlen		4	1	201	161	232	69.4
3.Ron Deckard		3	2	178	155	260	59.6
4.Warren Woolsey		1	4	150	191	294	64.9
5.James Adcox		1	4	136	190	304	62.5
6.Carol Simpson		1	4	133	123	234	52.6

Opponent			Score	R	OR	SP	R%	OR%
Robert Zumbahlen		45-37	41	38	60	68.3	63.3
Ron Deckard		41-32	28	25	48	58.3	52.1
James Adcox		41-31	53	50	72	73.6	69.4
Warren Woolsey		40-19	56	51	72	77.8	70.8


Walter Ray