One of the biggest tournaments for us to enter each year just wrapped up; Junior Worlds 2022, held this year for the second year running at the fabulous brand new facility in Guatemala City.
Champions were crowned in Singles, Doubles, and Mixed Doubles in six age groups: 21U, 18U, 16U, 14U, 12U, and 10U, as well as a team competition, meaning that in essence this tournament actually held 30 separate competitions to enter into the database. Its the rough equivalent of doing 30 small pro tournaments all at once, with the added benefit of typing in brand new names never before seen for a good chunk of the participants. If you see any typos, or name corrections, please don’t hesitate to reach out.
Reminder: as a practice, Pro Racquetball Stats does not capture full draws for any groups younger than 14yr olds; for the 12s, 10s, and younger we just capture the champions for historical reporting.
Congratulations to your champions:
– Boys 21U: @Diego Garcia , Argentina
– Boys 18U: @Sebastian Hernandez , Mexico
– Boys 16U: @Jorge Gutierrez, Mexico
– Boys 14U: Nicolas Galindo, Mexico
– Boys 12U: Pablo Ignacio Lagos, Bolivia
– Boys 10U: Hermann Gracia, Mexico
Mexico takes 4 of the 6 Boys singles titles.
– Girls 21U: Angelica Barrios , Bolivia
– Girls 18U: Michaela Meneses , Bolivia
– Girls 16U: @Naomi Ros, USA
– Girls 14U: Adriana Noelia Blacutt, Bolivia
– Girls 12U: María Laura Villacreses, Bolivia
– Girls 10U: Michelle Gomez, Mexico
Bolivia takes 4 of the 6 Girls Singles titles, while Ros secures the USA’s sole singles gold at the event.
– Boys 21U: Erick Trujillo / @Jose Carlos Ramos , Mexico
– Boys 18U: Sebastian Hernandez / @Luis Renteria, Mexico
– Boys 16U: Jorge Gutierrez / Eder Renteria , Mexico
– Boys 14U: Diego Romano / Sebastian Ruelas, Mexico
– Boys 12U: Axel Sanchez / Santiago Castillo, Mexico
– Boys 10U: Hermann Gracia / Arturo Gonzalez, Mexico
Mexico does a clean sweep of all 6 Boys doubles titles.
– Girls 21U: Angelica Barrios / @Natalia Mita, Bolivia
– Girls 18U: Valeria Miranda / Rebecca Amaya, Bolivia
– Girls 16U: Cynthia Gutierrez / Yanna Salazar, Mexico
– Girls 14U: Larissa Faeth / Giuliana Faeth, Costa Rica
– Girls 12U: Angelica Villaroel Garzon / Luciana Illanes Quenta, Bolivia
– Girls 10U: Grissel Gomez / Michelle Gomez, Mexico
Bolivia takes 3 of the 6 Girls doubles titles.
– Mixed 21U: Hector Barrios / @Angelica Barrios, Bolivia
– Mixed 18U: Sebastian Hernandez / Angela Veronica Vera Ortega , Mexico
– Mixed 16U: Jorge Gutierrez / Yanna Salazar, Mexico
– Mixed 14U: Sebastian Ruelas / Miranda Barraza, Mexico
– Mixed 12U: Pablo Ignacio Lagos / Angelica Villaroel Garzon, Bolivia
– Mixed 10U: Hermann Gracia / Michelle Gomez, Mexico
Mexico takes 4 of the 6 Mixed doubles titles.
Grand total of Titles won by Country:
– Mexico: 17 of 30
– Bolivia: 10 of 30
– Argentina, USA, and Costa Rica: 1 each
Team Mexico really dominates the 2022 event, especially on the Boys side where they took 10 of the 12 divisions. Bolivia won 7 of their 10 titles in Girls divisions, supporting what we’ve seen on the pro tour, where Bolivian players (or Bolivian born) comprise 3 of the top 10 and 6 of the top 20 players.
Bravo to these players, who took hold Triple Crowns of Singles, Doubles, and Mixed Doubles:
– Angelica Barrios: 21U, Bolivia
– Sebastian Hernandez: 18U, Mexico
– Jorge Gutierrez, 16U, Mexico
– Hermann Gracia, 10U, Mexico
– Michelle Gomez, 10U, Mexico
These players earned double crowns:
– Yanna Salazar, 16U, Mexico
– Sebastian Ruelas, 14U, Mexico
– Pablo Ignacio Lagos, 12U, Bolivia
– Angelica Villaroel Garzon , 12U, Bolivia
Every draw has a match report in the database that you can run: instead of repeating dozens of links we’ll give some examples here. Surf to www.proracquetballstats.com, click on either Juniors or “Junior Doubles” database, then at the very top you can pull down a match report. You can also run a number of different reports for singles and doubles.
Now some quick commentary division by singles division, mostly to recognize winners who have earned multiple Junior World titles over the years, and to provide some commentary on the older divisions with players who have already competed on the pro tours…
I use these “Matrix Reports” constantly; they show all the Junior winners across every age group for all of time. These links are for the Junior Worlds and date to 1989, the first ever Junior Worlds event, but are also available for USA, Canada, and Mexico.
Boys Singles Matrix Report: http://rb.gy/acygod
Girls Singles Matrix Report: http://rb.gy/yfsvqq
Clearly the two best players (Garcia and Erick Trujillo ) in this draw ended up in the same RR group, and then they fought their way to meet again in the final. Garcia (representing Argentina but who used to represent Bolivia) got two wins over his young Mexican to take Gold. The last time Garcia showed up on tour, he beat both Javier Mar and Rocky Carson; pretty heady company. We hope to see more of him. This is Garcia’s 7th Junior World title.
Notable here is Jose Carlos Ramos, aka “Pepe,” who beat Trujillo in the Mexican Junior nationals final and thus was the #1 seeded Mexican player here; he fell to Garcia in the semis. American #1 Micah Farmer got a great win over Bolivian @Adrian Jaldin but then fell to Garcia in the quarters.
Mexico’s Sebastian Hernandez came out of nowhere to win both his country 18U and World 18U titles, his first career Junior titles. He dominated in Guatemala, and the only player to even take a game off of him was an obviously hobbled @Timmy Hansen .
Hernandez joins a pretty illustrious list of 18U boys champs: here in reverse order are past winners: Trujillo, Miranda, Portillo, Marco Rojas, Christian Longoria, Montoya, Mercado, Moscoso, Marco Rojas, and Keller. That list includes 5 players currently ranked in the top 15, multiple IRT tournament winners, etc.
Mexico’s Jorge Gutierrez repeats as the 16U Junior worlds champ, the first time we’ve had a repeat 16U singles champ since Longoria in 2015. He’s another guy who has really blasted onto the scene, with no previous Mexican Junior titles prior to 2021. We went wire-to-wire as the #1 seed and defeated his countryman Eder Renteria in the final.
Hats off to Galindo for taking this title; he was inexplicably the #18 seed here, behind two other fellow Mexican players, despite being the 14U losing finalist in Mexican Junior Nationals and thus finishing ahead of multiple other Mexican entrants to this draw. I’ve complained about questionable IRF seedings before but this one is beyond me. He defeats Ruelas in the final after losing the Mexican final to him.
12U: An all-Bolivian Final which featured two Mexican semifinalists and a first time champion.
10U: Hermann Gracia (not Garcia as r2sports shows it) follows up his 10U Mexican title with a worlds title, taking out USA’s Alejandro Robles Picon in a huge come-from behind effort in the final.
Current LPRT regular Angelica Barrios skipped the pro stop in Maryland to compete and secured her third ever Junior Worlds title. She was pushed in the knockouts by Argentine lefty Martina Katz before topping tough Costa Rican Maricruz Ortiz in the semis (a match that many thought was the true final). Mexico’s @Maria Gutierrez (who went by Mafer in this event) upset USA’s Shane Diaz to make the final.
Bolivia’s LPRT touring pro Micaela Meneses repeated as 18U world champ and did not drop a game all event. She secures her 6th Career Junior World title. She topped both Mexican entrants en route to the title.
USA’s @Naomi Ros gave the US its sole gold medal at this event, beating both the Bolivian #1 and Mexican #1 to take the title. This is Ros’ second Junior world title; the first was in 12U when she was still competing for Mexico.
Girls 14U: Bolivia’s Adriana Noelia Blacutt wins her first junior world title.
Girls 12U: Another Bolivian first time girls winner in María Laura Villacreses took the title, defeating three of the top seeds along the way.
Girls 10U was taken by Mexico’s Michelle Gomez, who has now entered four junior events in her career and won four titles. She’s the two-time defending Mexico 10U champ, and now she’s the two-time defending World 10U champ.
Thanks to the International Racquetball Federation for hosting the event, thanks to the great hosts in Guatemala, thanks to all our the coaches and parents who sacrificed to get your kids down there, especially t his close to the holiday season, thanks to @Gary Mazaroff
for the streaming all tournament.
Tomorrow we’ll publish the LPRT summary, th en we’ll take a break until the end of the year when we’ll start posting some IRT season recap material.