A Typical Night in the APA Pool League

The APA is an amateur pool league designed to give players of any Skill Level the opportunity to improve their game while making friends and having fun. Currently, over 270,000 members play in The American Poolplayers Association, the World's Largest Amateur Pool League.
The following is a picture of two Tucson APA teams after they competed against each other in the finals of one of our BIG MONEY Team Tournaments. As you can see, these players had a great time playing pool and competeing against each other.  So its true what they say - the APA Pool League really is a great way to Have Fun...Meet People...Play Pool.   And incidently, our BIG MONEY Tournaments currently award over $18,000 per year!
On a typical league night, 5-8 of your friends, family and/or co-workers meet at the same time each week at your favorite watering hole.  As you arrive, you'll begin the night by saying your "hellos" to everyone, grabbing a beverage and/or a taking a few practice shots on one of the open pool tables.  You can already see that the opposing team is settling in, ready to enjoy a night of friendly competition.  Eventually both Team Captains get the matches started by flipping a coin.

The coin flip determines which team picks a player to shoot the night's first match.  When a player is chosen they are announced to the opposing team and the opposing team then decides who on their team is best suited to play that player.  Now the first match is set and since your not playing yet, this gives you the chance to settle in and root on your teammate.

While your watching your teammates play their matches, this is also a chance for you to chat with your friends and meet other players, practice on an open table, or just relax and  have a brew. 
Your turn at the table...

Before you begin the match, you and your opponent, Joe, shake hands and lag to determine which player will get to break first.  Your team quickly informs you that Joe is a Skill Level 6. As a Skill Level 3, you will have to win 2 games before he wins 5.  Soon you begin to realize that Joe is indeed a very good shot and he wins the first 2 games lickety split, but all the while, your team is cheering you on, making you determined to try your best!

At the start of the 3rd game it looks like Joe was only warming up because now he's shooting "lights out" as he pockets all of his balls and the 8-Ball in a single turn at the table ... but wait! You can't believe it, Joe scratched on the 8-Ball! Ouch, that's not how you wanted to win that game, but you'll take it.  Now the match is 1-2 and you only need
1 more game to win, while Joe needs 3.

Joe is clearly not as confident as he was during the first 2 games.  He knows he can't make another mistake, so he bears down and squeaks out 2 more games against you, making the game count 1-4, otherwise known as hill hill.  Now this match has turned into a real nail-biter and both teams can feel the suspense.

In the 5th match both players shoot slow and steady, each making good shots, but once again Joe gets down to the
8-Ball first.  He's faced with a tough decision, should he go for the tough cut down the rail or should he try a bank shot?  In that moment, you turn toward your team. You can't bear to watch, "I think I can hear the fat lady" you whisper.  You know Joe has just taken his shot because you hear the soft click of balls behind you.  Slowly players on both teams start to rise out of their seats as one team shouts at the 8-Ball to "get legs, get legs!", while the other team watches intently, silently hoping it won't fall.  Everything is literally going in slow motion now ... the 8-ball is approaching the pocket ... the game has even attracted a few other onlookers ... The 8-Ball inches closer and closer ... the air is thick with anticipation ... the 8 is on it's last quarter turn ... and ... "HOOOLLY COW!" you shout, just as the ball runs out of steam and hangs in the jaws of the pocket!

"Awww, good try Joe, good try!" the other team says with a clap on his back. "Well, it's not over" he replies with a sly grin as he looks at you.

Uh oh ... that's right!  You'd almost forgotten you were even involved in the game and now it's your turn to shoot.  You could still win this!  Looking over at the table you realize that you still have three solids left and the 8-Ball is just sitting there like a Christmas present all tied up in a bow waiting to be picked off!  The first shot is going to be your hardest, there's a lotta green between that cue ball and the 4-Ball.  You've never been very comfortable with long shots, and this one looks like that movie title, The Green Mile. Inhale deep, exhale slow. If you can just make this shot the rest will be easy.  Your almost ready, another deep breath, try not to let them see you sweat, you think to yourself. You line up the shot and ..."TIME-OUT!", someone on your team yells.

O-kay ... now your a little startled but what the hey, maybe your coach knows something you don't know.  The best player on your team comes up to the table and says, "I know this is a hard shot, but I just wanted to let you know that win or lose, you're playing a great match!  "Are YOU having fun?"  Well, yeah, come to think of it your having a blast - good times, good friends, and great pool. "It doesn't get any better than this" you reply.  "Good, then whatever happens you've already won for the night!  Now, just do your best."

He's right of course, you are having a great time and even if you rattle the 4-Ball it won't be the end of the world for anybody.  Your team will still support you, just like good ol' Joe's team is backing him up. You might as well just relax and keep having a good time.  That 4-Ball doesn't look so intimidating now, so here goes...

"YEAH!" your team shouts as the 4-Ball splits the pocket "GREAT SHOT!"  And just like it was Christmas morn, you sink the other two solids and the 8-Ball easy as pie.  Your team is thrilled, they're all congratulating you and giving you high-fives because you've just clinched a win putting your team ahead 3 to 2 for the night.  Someone somewhere shouts, "a round of drinks!" as you go over to Joe and shake his hand.

"Good match" you say, "You should've made that 8-Ball, I can't believe it didn't go in."  "I knew it was a risky shot" says Joe, " but it was the only shot I had.  Hey, you play pretty good under pressure."  "Oh thanks, that's probably one of the best games I've ever played," you say, "I don't know if I can take that kind of pressure again."  "Really?" says Joe, "'Because my buddy and I have been looking for a Skill Level 3 to shoot with us at the 8-Ball Southwest Challenge in Vegas next month. You interested?"
APA Pool Leagues

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