Chris Kinka and Jason Sivak hoist this year’s trophy after being crowned the 2015 World Champions.
The competition in this year’s World Championship was fierce as always. At times the World Championship has seen competitors from the US, Ethiopia, England, Ireland and Canada. It is usually a single elimination tournament, but this year, we made the decision to reduce the number of teams and make the tournament double elimination, to increase the quality of play. A number of teams from this year’s league came out, including the current league champions.
The stage was set for the finals of this year’s Stones World Championship 9 years ago when the game was first conceived. Jason Sivak and Christopher Kinka, two of the four creators of the game, who have been there since the beginning, harbor what is certainly the strongest rivalry in all of Stones between each other. These two, who have never played together, even in exhibition, decided the time was right to put their pasts behind them and join forces. Some say this decision came about because a group of young guns in the world of Stones, some of which are Jason’s own children, had been making statements along the lines of, “They’re washed up” and “This is the dawning of a new generation of Stones!”
Nate Priester, and Peyton Sivak, a progeny of Jason, are certainly making waves in the world of Stones. They went on a 25 game winning streak and won 2015 Southern Tier League Championship, the youngest pair to do so in the history of Stones. Peyton and Nate, better known by their team name Stone Ballers, cruised through the winners’ bracket and were poised to take home another championship at what has become known as their home course, but Jason and Chris had other plans for the “young whippersnappers.”
Jason and Chris who had fallen into the losers’ bracket earlier in the day at the hands of 2014 Southern Tier league champions, Frank Besse and Rob Loll. This made for a long uphill battle, past some powerful teams, including another dynamic young pair Alex Milliner and Brandon West, Adam and Josh Eckert, eventually redeeming themselves against the team that sent them there. All three of these matches were close, each game going into at least one round of overtime.
Kinka and Sivak won a decisive victory in game one of the finals against Peyton and Nate, forcing a final, all or nothing, sudden death, match! The final game of the tournament was hard fought and came down to a long distance overtime throw. Nate, placed his first Stone close to the mark on a throw that was well over 50 feet from where they were standing. It came down to Kinka’s last Stone, and he made a miracle throw that rolled to a stop a mere 6 inches from the mark. The tension in the air was palpable as Peyton and Nate lined up to try and better Kinka’s throw. Peyton’s first ball took a wild bounce and ended up in the water, causing Nate to lose his next throw and left Peyton with only one ball. The young bucks made a valiant effort, and Peyton’s final ball missed the mark by less than an inch. It was an exciting finish to the first father-son championship match and a fitting conclusion to the 2015 Stones World Championship.
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