In addition to two other major events this past weekend, USA Racquetball hosted its Intercollegiates tournament for the first time in two years. After having 2020 cancelled last minute due to the fast rising Covid issue, then not even attempting to organize for 2021, we’re back for 2022.
The host this year was, for the first time since 2017, not technically a University. To avoid any last minute mask mandate policy changes, USAR kept the tournament in Tucson (where the University of Arizona was intended to be the host), but moved the event to the beautiful Tucson Racquet & Fitness Center.
r2sports home page: https://www.r2sports.com/tourney/home.asp?TID=38237
Here’s a recap of the events
Congrats to your winners:
- Men’s #1 Singles: Ariel Tito, CSU-Pueblo
- Women’s #1 Singles: Annie Roberts , University of the Pacific
- Men’s #1 Doubles: @Arthur Schmeiser and @Ben Baron , Northern Arizona
- Women’s #1 Doubles: Roberts & @Alondra Canche , University of the Pacific
- Men’s Team: Missouri
- Women’s Team: Missouri
- – Overall Team: Missouri
Comments on the results with some fun facts.
Thanks to a two year gap in competition, we were guaranteed two new Singles champions. The reigning champions from 2019 (Erik Garcia and @Hollie Scott have both matriculated from college. This opens up the door for a brand new set of competitors in both main singles draws, and some familiar names from recent USA Junior competitions were in the mix.
In the Boys #1, Bolivian Junior Ariel Tito, now attending the racquetball mecca of Colorado State University at Pueblo, made a big statement this weekend, beating three higher seeded players as the #6 seed to take the final over #2 Ben Baron. Tito’s only previous IRT experience was in a PAC shootout lower tier event last year, and he’ll see his USA Ranking rocket up after his comprehensive win in the final 9,3.
In the Girls #1, the final was competed by two familiar faces to those who watch the LPRT. There, former Junior national champ @Annie Robert cruised to the title, never giving up more than 6 points in a game. In the final she topped Texas-native @Shane Diaz 6,4 to take her first intercollegiates title.
This win represents the 9th ever Men’s singles #1 win for a player from CSU Pueblo; they are gaining ground win by win on the leader, that being Memphis State (now U of Memphis). This is the first ever Women’s #1 title for a player from the U of the Pacific (2nd overall, as @Marco Rojas won the 2016 men’s #1 while playing for that university).
In the Men’s #1 Doubles, it was a rematch of teams featuring the two singles finalists, but NAU’s Baron teamed with Schmeiser to top Tito and his partner @Samuel Lazcano
to take the title.
In the Women’s #1 Doubles, Roberts teamed with Canchola to take the title. They topped Missouri’s Kate Zawalski / Abby Lachance in the final.
In the team competition…Missouri made a clean sweep of the team event, winning all three team competitions. Your team results top 3 in each category:
Men’s: Missouri, BYU, Northern Arizona (nau)
Women’s: Missouri, Pacific, BYU
Overall: MIssouri, BYU, Oregon State
This represents the first team title of any kind for Missouri in the 48-year history of intercollegiates. Its also the first time we’ve had a clean sweep by a college since Oregon State in 2013.
Congrats to all the participants and to USA Racquetball and @Shane Conner for tournament direction. Thanks to Leo Vazquez for streaming all weekend.