New Champions are crowned!
July 2013 doesn’t seem so long ago— Late on a Championship night at Turfway Park, Brandon Hill was already an ACO World Doubles Champion, but during the ACO King of Cornhole finals, with ESPN highlights on the line, a couple of bags didn’t fall. He had the chance to join Eric Zocklein, the only player to win an ACO World Doubles Championship and an ACO King of Cornhole crown at the same tourney, but it slipped through his fingers. Meanwhile, Bret Guy was there to pick up that chunk of history.
Wise men say true character is not determined by a person’s avoidance of defeat, but by their response to it. Well, this past weekend, we witnessed character at its finest, and we learned that the heart of a true champion doesn’t deflate, it grows stronger, as Brandon overtook more than 140 of the world’s best players to claim the ACO Cleveland Cornhole Major #4 Singles Title! Go ahead, Brandon, put on the shirt, “Mr. Clutch!”
Brandon’s path to the Championship title was unreal, defeating Matt Guy, Matt Strzala, Jay Dotson, Eric Zocklein, and Daymon Dennis before capping his night with a finals win over multiple-time Doubles Major Champion, Adam Hissner. Adam’s run to the finals was also impressive, with wins over Ron Weiss, Travis Jess, Tim Priest, Gary Lewis, and Cody Henderson. Congrats Brandon and Adam!
The ACO Cleveland Major Doubles Championship was no less stunning, as Gary Lewis and Ron Kugel defeated husband and wife team, Bruce and Teresa Forsee, in the title match.
Both teams made their first appearance in an ACO Doubles Major final, but none of the team members are strangers to top level play. Gary Lewis, a former ACO King of Cornhole and ACO Major runner-up, has perhaps the best bag flight on the ACO tour and can certainly challenge any player in the world anyplace, anytime. Ron Kugel has been a top player for years and has multiple high finishes in big ACO tourneys. Bruce Forsee had a breakthrough performance at the ACO World Championships of Cornhole VIII. And of course, our very own reigning ACO Queen of Cornhole, Teresa Forsee, fresh off a big Regional win the weekend before, shot lights-out during the Doubles tourney. Congrats to all!
A big shout out goes to all the Cleveland Cornhole players who came out, represented well, and helped make the Cleveland Major one of the most successful ever. Special thanks to ACO Certified Officials Ken Allen and Dave Weiser, who throughout the planning and execution, helped coordinate an outstanding event.
With ACO Season IX headed down the home-stretch, the drama is only mounting! There are some big things to keep in mind while placing your bets.
There’s still a serious race in place for ACO Player of the Season. At Cleveland, Cody Henderson tried to defend valuable points, but Eric Zocklein would not be denied, and won the heads-up match in the consolation bracket, which extended his lead. But Cody still has a Regional to make up, and this one may come down to the SCR.
But don’t turn your back, because perhaps one of the most consistent players on the ACO tour will swoop in and grab top honors for himself, Mr. Derek Fateiger. He was the first ever ACO Major Champion at the ACO Vidalia Cornhole Cup. Derek then went on to place 3rd place at the ACO King of Cornhole VIII. And oh yeah, he was also this season’s ACO South Carolina Cornhole Cup Major #2 Singles Champion. The dude’s a machine down the middle! Did we mention that if he wins in VA, Derek will be tied for the most wins in ACO Major history?
Other lines to watch as we roll toward the last two ACO Majors of the season, the ACO State Championship tournaments, and the ACO World Championships of Cornhole IX:
- ACO Alabama Cornhole Cup Major #5 is right around the corner and it could be an opportunity for someone to take a big jump in the ACO World Rankings. Be in Tuscaloosa April 11th-12th! Sign up today at AmericanCornhole.com
- When the tour moves east in May with the ACO Virginia Cornhole Cup #6, look out for those East Coasters: Greg Vajda, Elvis Orr, Rocky Rockwell, James Baldwin, Mark Cahalan, and more.
- Rolling toward the KOC, how many others feel that a Championship is within their grasp? Maybe Jordan Langworthy, Frank Modlin, Jay Dotson, or Victor Ruiz?
- Last, but not least, go ahead and count him out. He doesn’t care. He’s been there and knows what it takes. Only two more words are needed: Matt Guy.
It’s going to be a great summer!