Welcome back, everyone!
Congratulations to the SCDA’s very own Matt Smooke and Dan Guinan on their incredible performances in Las Vegas at the PDC World Series of Darts! Matt and Dan faced some very tough competition and not only held their own, but took down some very notable players.
In the 2nd round of Qualifier #2, Dan faced off against David Fatum, a bonafide PDC card holder, and one of the best players in North America. In the first to 4 wins match (see DC match report HERE), Dan jumped out to a 2-0 lead by hitting a Ton80 in each of those first two legs. Dan threw a blistering, PDC-worthy, 15-dart, 100.2 average in the 2nd leg:
David came back and won the next 3 straight to take a 3-2 lead. Despite Dan throwing 2 Tons and a Ton40 in the 6th leg, David blasted his own 15-darter to take the match 4-2. In the 6 legs played, David hit 12 scores of 98 or higher, and Dan hit 11 scores of 100 or higher for a 74.7 match average! That’s over 14 points higher than his current SCDA Singles 501 average of 60.55! So proud of how you played, Dan, and under such intense pressure against one of the toughest competitors in darts! Well done!!!
In Qualifier #3, Matt took out Chad Bivens in dominant fashion with a 4-1 Round 2 win. Matt threw 3 Tons in the first leg to take a 1-0 lead. He followed up by winning the 2nd leg with a 106 checkout. Chad battled back and took the 3rd leg, but Matt responded in the 4th leg with a brilliant 14-dart, 107.4 average leg that included 2 Tons, a Ton40, and a 2-dart 78 checkout! Matt put a nail in the coffin by opening the 5th and final leg with 140, 121, 140!
Matt then went on to beat Carl Jesson 4-2 in the 3rd Round. Matt hit a Ton40 or better in EVERY leg of the match, including a 3rd leg start of 100, 140, 100; and a 5th leg start of 121, 100, 180!
Qualifier #3 had started with over 150 players and Matt, now moving on to Round 4, had advanced into a field now distilled down to the best 32 dart players in North America. As if that wasn’t a tall enough order, Matt was to face Chris Lim: son of dart legend, Paul Lim, and himself one of the top players in the world (see DC match report HERE).
In the 1st leg, Matt hit a Ton in 3 of his first 4 turns, but Chris fired a brilliant 14-darter that included a 180 and a 2-dart 95 checkout. Chris hit another 180 in the 2nd leg, but Matt held strong and leveled the match 1-1 with a Ton followed by a 2-dart 96 checkout. Chris took the 3rd leg, then Matt again fired back and leveled the match 2-2 with a 4th leg win. Chris threw first in the 5th leg, but stumbled on his out. Matt seized the opportunity and won the leg to go up 3-2. Matt now had first throw and the chance to beat Chris “Lightning” Lim and advance into the final 16. But Chris showed why he’s one of the best in the world and fired off a 16-darter that included another 180 (his 3rd of the match!). With the match leveled at 3-3, Matt had one last chance, but Chris opened with 100, 140, 100 and 96 to win the 7th and final leg and take the match 4-3. I was shaking with excitement and I was only watching numbers being posted as I watched the match online, so I can only imagine how thrilling this match was in person! What a gritty performance, Matt! So proud of you! Congratulations and well done!!!
During our week off, Tom Clark pulled together a super-fun and successful night of mixed-doubles darts that included 16 players. Congratulations to the winners: 1st – Derrick Zonca & Dimples Ranches; 2nd – Ellie Mosser & Mike Reyes; and 3rd – Rachel Schwartz & Dylan Moon.
If anyone would like to do the mixed-doubles night again sometime, or if you have a one-off darting event you would like the SCDA to pull together, please be sure to click HERE and let us know.
Tonight is the last night of the 1st half of the season and several 2-player (and some 3-player) teams have had to scramble over the last few weeks to find an alternate to stand in for a missing player rather than face a forfeit. Life happens and it’s always good to have an alternate ready to go in the event of an unforeseen circumstance. With a player needing to have participated in at least 3 regular season matches to be eligible for playoffs, you might want to start getting an alternate qualified now.
Have fun tonight, everyone, and Shoot Well!