(Seguin) -- Shooting pool and being good at it no longer has to stay within the confines of a pool hall or local tavern. In fact because of the talent found right here in Seguin, a local chapter of the National BCA (Billiards Congress of America) Pool League was created just over a year ago by pool enthusiast Adam Molina.
Molina, the director of the Texas Tri County 8 Ball League, says now after a year of play, three local teams have earned the opportunity to compete in Las Vegas on July 25-29 during the BCA's "Greatest Pool Tournament in the World."
"The tournament was at the end of the season. So they had to compete all season to qualify to be in the final tournament. So that's what they're basically doing each week is showing up and they pay their league fees and they compete each week, but ultimately, the Vegas part of it is decided at the end of everything. So, they all meet at different locations and they have the playoffs just kind of like the way they're all used to, but the difference is that now instead of getting cash, the winners are getting Vegas. (My concept) is a different culture -- mine is let's have fun during the season, but we're going to honor the champions," said Molina.
Molina says pool leagues have an incredible history here in Seguin. However, he said he wanted to give players another reason if not just another day of the week in which to play and earn a chance to win the ultimate prize of Vegas.
"The national league is BCA and so every city basically, mainly big cities -- that's why I created this because there was nothing here and I had to drive to San Antonio and I'm raising five kids so I was like 'how am I going to do both worlds? I can't go to San Antonio all the time.' So I created it here, but really it's the same format in any city that you go to across the country," said Molina.
Molina says a total of 18 pool players plus himself will make the trip for the national tournament at the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino. The three teams competing include Canopy Boyz representing the Double Diamond Saloon in Seguin and the Gunslingers and Can't Get Right teams representing the Full Moon Saloon located in northern Guadalupe County.
Molina says the opportunity to play in Vegas is the foundation behind the league's motto, "Small Town Legacies with Big-City Outcomes!" Molina says upon arriving in Vegas, teams will be able to showcase their talents throughout their stay.
"There's different levels of competition once they get there. So, I'm sending them for team competition. So once they're there, they can actually enter on their own to also do individual events or doubles events where they just grab one extra partner. So, I'm sending them there for one thing, but they can do other things," said Molina.
With this first trip to Vegas, Molina says he is hoping to grow the membership and illustrate that there is always different styles of pool and that this is only another option for those who love the game and who want a new experience.
"I think that it's exciting to create new experiences for people and that's really all that I can say about it, because I'm excited. I didn't know how it was going to turnout. I still really don't know, but we're almost there. So really I'm just excited about the new experiences we're going to have. People are telling me they've never even been on the airplane. So their experiences are going to start just going to the airport. Then, it's just going to keep unfolding. That's what I'm looking forward to is creating an experience that people may not have had otherwise," said Molina.
In addition to the trip to Las Vegas, the entire membership at the end of the year is treated to an awards banquet and special prizes.