Day 23: Missoula, MT
Only 58 days left before the US Amateur Championships.
Gotta pick up the pace with more focused practice.
So it's back to school today (Univ. of Montana)
and those beautiful 15 Gold Crown IV tables.
Yesterday's table was "Reserved",
so I took one of the others which are all
covered in nappy stuff.
While they look slow, they aren't that much slower
than the table with the black smooth cloth.
The place was deserted,
so I started into my practice routine:
1. Two dozen long draw shots
2. Two dozen short draw precision position shots.
3. Sorto string till I do it. (I did in 7 tries.)
4. Alternate Rail position with 6 balls. (10 reps)
After 100 minutes I needed a break.
Would you believe table time was only 4 bucks?
I'm going back tonight for competition...
Well, the competition didn't happen.
Adam, the guy who I played last night,
and who I was intending to play again tonight,
called to say his buddy got arrested,
and he had to deal with that.
I guess if you're going to get arrested,
the time to do it is while you're still in college.
So I just did some more focused practice for 3 hours.
This time I worked on the tough shots.
Table length, cue ball frozen on the head rail,
with the object ball frozen to the side rail.
My success percentage was pretty low until I
focused on three things:
1. exaggerated follow through
2. disciplined pre-shot routine
3. take a good, full stroke (not soft)
With these working for me, my success ratio soared.
The follow through helped somewhat,
but it was the pre-shot routine that helped most.
I remember Samm Diep's pre-shot routine and how
absolutely focused she is, and I tried to model her
and it was a big help.
Samm won the BCA 9-ball women's championship!
I played her last year when I was in Denver,
and I'm looking forward to playing her again
when I get there on this trip.
Even with cheap table time and great tables,
I'm burning out on this place.
I need some serious competition, not just practice.
The road is calling my name...