We are under a week away from the opening shots of the 12th annual World Series of Beer Pong. Soon the masses will gather in Vegas to crown two champions. The mecca of organized Beer Pong, the World Series brings out all the strengths and weaknesses of every player. We are just as curious as you about how it will all play out, with new players, a new payout structure, and of course the new partnerships we’ve heard about. As we have promised, here is our prediction list, knowing full well that it will be equally agreed upon as well as torn to shreds. The field is denser than ever with great players, and picking a winner, let alone a top 16 is nearly impossible. With that said, we still tried.
T13. Louisiana Unrivaled – Andrew Hill & Seth Beglis
The runts of the litter when you’re looking at the rest of the Top 16 but don’t let their size fool you. These two come to play each and every game and have no problem taking down the Goliaths of the pong world.
T13. Boom Goes The Dynamite – Mike Gramer & Ryan Rossell
Father Time is ticking away and the window is definitely closing on these old dirty bastards. But despite the gray, they still know how to put balls in the cup…..no matter how low they’re hanging these days.
T13. Photo Finish – Tim Williams & Nick Pulice
Another Top 16 finish for newcomers Tim and Nick. We aren’t sure if Tim’s figured out the three rack yet but this will be as far as they go after a surprising 9th at WS XI! Better luck next year guys!
T13. Heemagrogen – Brandon Juracek & Ryan Catalano
One is homeless and the other is just a bum! But somehow these two will find their way into the Top 16, the only problem will be the lack of Adderall available on day three.
T9. Here We Go – Evan Serrano & Cameron Chappell
Ten months ago, these two players were one game away from playing for $50,000. They shot the game of their lives to get there by opening 9/9 against the favorites Blitzkrieg in the Final Four. They finished the game 10/11 and sent Marx/Kessler to the loser bracket with their tails between their legs after a five cup beating. They seemed unphased, unstoppable and definitely the crowd favorite at that moment in time. Then the pressure reared its ugly head. They eventually lost in two straight games and ended up with a 4th place finish! As disappointed as they are in themselves, only 10 other teams in the world can say they’ve place 4th in the biggest tournament in the world. That’s definitely something to be proud of. Unfortunately, for the time being, we believe that they’ve already hit the ceiling and even though we think they’ll make the Top 16 for the second straight year, it’ll be too hard to replicate the run they had at WS IX.
T9. VA/NJ Presents: Reap & Vince – Thomas Reap & Vince Catizone
Two of the more accomplished players on the east coast are teaming up this go around. If there’s one thing we can say about this team, expect smashed cups, broken rules, and wins…..lots and lots of wins! Both of these players have been just about as deep as you can go before reaching the final table at the World Series. Vince himself, eclipsed that barrier a while back when he won $25,000 in Atlantic City for a WPT event. Reap also has a decently sized victory when he took down a $10,000 event where he actually defeated Vince. With this type of experience, we have no doubt they’ll be there when it matters most, we just wonder if Vince will be able to contain the wild beast that is The Reaper, on day three!
T9. Drinkin’ Smokin’ Straight West Coastin’ – Michael Seivert & Byron Findley
The second most decorated team in the world when you’re talking about majors like Bpong and World Pong Tour hold/held. These two have done it all from $5ks to $50ks and everything inbetween. They aren’t the best shooters percentage wise when you’re talking about three full days but something about the final day just clicks when these two are next to one another. They refuse to miss, refuse to lose and refuse to have a bad time! That’s one hell of a recipe for winning if I’ve ever seen one. Granted, it’s been awhile since Sonoma Joe has played at this level but when you’ve been doing it as long as he has, as well as he has….it’s no different than riding a bike. And when that bike has such sturdy training wheels, it’s pretty hard to fall over! Yes, we just called Byron a pair of training wheels
T9. Unfinished Business – Casey Costa & Jason Hershfield
Hands down, our favorite team in the entire field this World Series! Why? Well who doesn’t like Casey? His demeanor never changes, win or lose, play great or play bad. His shot is almost mesmerizing as he manages to balance perfectly prior to every shot and only move from the elbow down. But the real treat which most won’t know is Hersh. We always put a ton of stock in Casey and nothing has changed, but we’re putting even more in his partner who hasn’t played competitively in 5 or 6 years. It’s been so long we don’t even know anymore. Regardless, Hersh was one of the best during his run out in California. We just hope he’s here to compete and win, not to just hang out and have a good time will old pals. Been practicing Hersh because times are a bit different from when you left. Don’t make us look bad!
T7. Back to Basics – Greg Fehl & Matt Kein
After placing 5th in his maiden voyage, Greg now has a new partner and even higher expectations. Matt is no slouch himself, most recently taking 1st place in singles at WCC late last year. These two have been playing together a lot lately and if Greg can find a way to stay upright, they should do very well!
T7. Blitzkrieg – Brandon Marx & Kevin Kessler
You either hate them or love them. There is absolutely no inbetween. Marx and Kessler have done everything a team could hope for during a career and then did it again six more times. What they can’t seem to do is win anything greater than a $10,000 tournament. They’ve been on the final table of the World Series two of the last three years and lost both. WS IX they choked it away and WSXI they were beaten by the better team. At some point these two have to stop making final tables and frankly, everyone is sick of seeing them there. Luckily for those individuals, you have nothing to worry about. Blitzkrieg will undoubtedly make the Top 16 but after an early loss, the ground to make up will just be too great for them!
T5. White Girl Wasted – Mark Pimentel & Aaron Smith
With the exception of a very few, Big Mark is one of the most consistent players to pick up a pong ball. No matter who his partners are, he continuously makes deep runs and seemingly always cashes out. Some of his best finishes in Bpong events have been with longtime partner and great friend Aaron Smith by his side. Our only worry is whether or not Aaron will be in top form, if he is they could absolutely win this entire event. But if not, luckily for him, Big Mark’s skill and intimidation alone will grant them a Top 16 bid. It’ll be up to Aaron as to whether or not they advance any further than that.
T5. History in the Making – Michael Popielarski & Brandon Clarke
When you’ve climbed the mountaintop of beer pong, it’s so hard to think that you can do it again, let alone the following year. The World Series is the toughest competition these players compete in every year and to expect someone to repeat is pure insanity. That is of course, unless you’re talking about Michael Popielarski who has done what everyone thought and still thinks, is the impossible. No one really gave HITM a shot last year and that’s not due to Pop but moreso his choice in rookie partner Brandon Clarke. We know they shot well because they do have the greatest performance ever on a final table but we believe a big portion of their success was everyone who slept on BC. This year around they don’t have that luxury after a 2nd place in Virginia and then BC taking 2nd place in the Spring Classic with best friend Tim Williams. They will be under the spotlight the entire event and we aren’t saying they’re going to choke, we know that won’t happen. But late in day 3 we expect one of the four teams listed ahead to simply outplay them.
4. Tipsy Not Trashed – David “Sven” Anderson & Chris Kingsbury
One of the more dominating teams and players over the last two years. Sven and Kings are not only Top 10 within their respective region but also easily Top 25 in the world if there was such a list. They won the last ECBPC main event, took second two years ago in Virginia, Sven took first with another partner at the most recent WCC and then this duo dominated the LABP $5k by winning both the satellite and main event a few months ago. After a very disappointing WS XI appearance, TNT is out for revenge on everyone, especially the dreaded four rack. Don’t be surprised if these two collectively take down every event The World Series of Beer Pong has to offer over the weekend!
3. Ya Lawst – Ryan “Butters” Smith & Justin Spurrier
As we’re typing this out, so many other thoughts are running through our heads that we would love to say. Most of which are directed at the #2 player on this team, Butters, and none of them are pleasant! We know we aren’t alone on this matter because so many display their dislike for him publicly on Facebook almost daily. For this reason is why we’ve ranked them so high. The trolling that Butters has produced over the last two years has built up to the breaking point for so many and is sheer genius! When you want to beat someone so bad, you tend to overthink your situation which can be a disaster in the end. We expect this scenario to come into play on day three for most of their opponent’s and when it does, their ability to shoot insanely high percentages will undoubtedly take them to the moon, or as we think…..just shy of it!
2. Kryptonite – Donnie Jones & Eric Lewis
”What the hell?” and “This makes no damn sense!” are probably the first two thoughts that come to mind when seeing this Michigan duo at the #2 spot. We understand the confusion since everyone has read our thoughts on all of the accomplishments or lack thereof when it comes to this region and state of Michigan specifically. But regardless of that, the fact still remains that these two can shoot with the best of them and they proved that with their solid finish in WS XI. They’ve also proven that they can handle a certain type of pressure of a final table with a great win at last year’s Blondies kickoff event but with no experience in a situation of this magnitude in their relatively short careers, we just don’t see them being able to pull off such a win. Despite that, a second place finish in the biggest tournament of the year is definitely something to be proud of.
1. Moosetang Saale – Brad “Moose” Mosdell & Brent Saale
Moose comes in once again with a new partner for the series for the fourth straight year and due to Ross Hampton’s absence, he was lucky enough to nab Brent. Usually the top contenders always have a hefty balance of skill and chemistry but a team with such overwhelming amount of skill should be able to overcome any lack of chemistry after a couple days of prelims. This team is comprised of two WSOBP Singles Champions and as we’ve seen from a previous team on this list, it seems to be a pretty solid recipe for success. Our only concern comes on the defensive end which both players lack. But at the end of the day, we fully expect these two gentlemen to be hoisting the coveted WSOBP check on Sunday evening.