Holliston pool team creates a dynastyBy JOE O'CONNELL , Associated Press
Jul. 14, 2013 5:01 AM ET
HOLLISTON, Mass. (AP) — There are sports dynasties, and then there are the Holliston Hustlers.
The Holliston Senior Center's over-50 billiards team has enjoyed an abundance of success the last six years at pool tables across eastern Massachusetts, recently winning its 10th state title in 14 seasons.
"Pool is pool," said team captain David Hall. "It is a fantastic game if you are into it. You have to be able to see angles and you have to able to see the banks."
The seven-member team, four regulars and three substitutes, compete in the Eastern Massachusetts Seniors Travel 8-Ball Pool League. There are two divisions with teams from the north and south that play a fall and spring season. Both end in a championship match between the two division winners.
Holliston, whose division includes Framingham, Bellingham, Natick, Northborough and Southborough, has won the last four championships.
"The teams have improved tremendously over the years," said Tedo Selent, a longtime team member and former captain. "It is set up pretty fair."
Hall and Selent's dedication to practice could be one of the reasons for the team's success. They are both regulars at the Senior Center and play as many as 30 games together three times a week in the pool room.
"It's just shoot, shoot, shoot," Hall said. "It doesn't matter if the table is slanted. You shoot to keep the eye."
Hall, originally from Detroit, first learned to play snooker when he was about 13 years old. Snooker is a cue game played on a table that is bigger than a pool table and has smaller pockets.
"I've always had a stick," Hall said.
Selent said he enjoys playing pool because he gets out of the house and meets a lot of great people. But some of Selent's most memorable moments with the team are not associated with the championships, although he said those are great.
A few years ago, during a match against Bellingham, Selent said he was in the bathroom trying to overcome a heart attack when someone came in and told him he had to play. He did and ended up losing. Then another time, while the team was traveling to play Framingham, he had another heart attack and the squad had to forfeit the match.
"Those are my most memorable moments," Selent said with a smile.
The team has the summer off, but is already thinking about the fall season. League rules stipulate if a team wins five championships in a row, it gets to keep the championship trophy and the league gets a new one.
Holliston already has one trophy in its possession, and win in the fall 2013 championship would give the team another.