USA and Canadian Nationals Recap

Lambert makes a rare appearance on the court at the 2023 Canadian Nationals. Photo unk

Congrats to your newly crowned National title winners on the weekend:

– USA Men’s Singles: Daniel De La Rosa

– USA Women’s Singles: Erika Manilla

– Canada Men’s Singles: Samuel Murray

– Canada Women’s Singles: Frederique Lambert

– Canada Men’s Doubles: Coby Iwaasa & Kurtis Cullen

– Canada Women’s Doubles: Frederique Lambert & Michele Morissette

– Canada Mixed Doubles: Christian Pocsai & Ofelia Wilscam match reports for these events:

– USA Men’s Singles:

– USA Women’s Singles:

– Canada Men’s Singles:

– Canada Women’s Singles:

– Canada Men’s Doubles:

– Canada Women’s Doubles:

– Canada Mixed Doubles:

R2 Sports App home page for USA event:

Trackie page for Canada event:…/racquetball-canada…/486924/


Lets review the draws.

USA Men’s first.

There were no real surprises to the Semis from the 10-man draw; we were robbed of the best quarter final match when 2-time defending USA national champ Rocky Carson announced he was skipping the event. I don’t blame him; flying halfway across the country on Memorial day weekend for a likely one-and-done against a top IRT player for someone who has played basically two tournaments all year wasn’t a strong strategy. Carson is off the national team for the first time since (I believe) 2002, an amazing stat.

In the semis, a shock upset by Adam Manilla , taking out the #1 seeded Jake Bredenbeck with relative ease in four games. A real surprise loss that has major US team ramifications for the Pan Am games (which we’ll summarize below). From the bottom, #2 Daniel De La Rosa cruised past his doubles partner Alejandro Landa to guarantee his singles qualification to the team and solidify his claim.

In the final, Manilla made a match of it, stretching the 2-time defending IRT champ to five games, but DLR persevered to claim his first ever USA singles title. Jake rebounded to take the 3rd place match over Landa, which I was initially shocked was even played given the circumstances (but read on for the likely real reason).


US Men’s National Team/Pan Am games roster ramifications.

Your 2023-24 team qualifiers are now:

– Men’s Doubles: De La Rosa & Landa

– Mixed Doubles: Manilla

– Men’s Singles: De La Rosa & Manilla

Three players for three Pan Am Games Slots. So, absent any externalities that impact the availability/eligibility of these three players, this is your Pan Am Games Men’s team. I’d imagine that we’d line up these players exactly like this in Chile in the fall.

Now, why did they play the 3rd place match? Probably for positioning in case one of these three players cannot go to Chile. And the “order” of finishing matters when selecting the next players to go. If the USA men need a 3rd player, here’s the next in line:

– Men’s Doubles finalists from Feb: Manilla & Antone

– Mixed Doubles finalist from Feb: De La Rosa

– Men’s Singles semi finalists from May: Bredenbeck & Landa

So, next in line to be asked probably would be Jake and then Wayne, then the team would start to dig deeper. Given the import of the Pan Am Games, its not likely we’d have to; this is the crown jewel event of the sport.


USA Women’s competition;

There were no real surprises in the 5-person Ladies draw. Lexi York did her best to upset @Rhonda Rajsich in the quarters but fell in five games. Kelani Lawrence broke her duck against Rhonda in the semis, winning in three to ensure her national team consideration. Erika Manilla had a battle against Hollie Scott that went 5 games, with Scott knowing only a win would put her into contention after early losses in doubles draws in February. In the final, Manilla took the title in an upset by seed but certainly not by LPRT current rankings. Manilla repeats as National singles champion.


US Women’s National Team/Pan Am games roster ramifications.

Your team qualifiers are now:

– Women’s Doubles: Manilla & Michelle Key , who did not travel to Chicago this weekend to compete

– Mixed Doubles: Manilla

– Women’s Singles: Manilla & Lawrence.

So, as we thought might happen, three ladies for two spots in Chile. Someone is going to be disappointed. We can speculate now as to what the US Team committee/future US coach may decide w/r/t putting the best team forward, but that wouldn’t be fair to any of these women, who have earned their US team titles on the court.


Canada Men’s Singles

For the 14th straight time. the final of a national Canadian tournament came down to its top two players, #1 @Samuel Murray and #2 Coby Iwaasa . There were a couple of notable down-bracket upsets, a rarity in Canadian racquetball; congrats to Kurtis Cullen for taking out #4 @Connell Lee and for #6 @Tanner Prentice to get the upset win over #3 @Trevor Webb to advance to the semis and eventually compete for 3rd place. Cullen took 3rd and capped a banner weekend for him (he also won the Doubles title; see below).

In the men’s final, Murray controlled Iwaasa to win in three 4,10,3 and claim his 4th straight National title.


Canada Women’s Singles:

#1 Frederique Lambert won her 3rd straight Women’s singles title, and 5th overall, by downing @Juliette Parent in the final. Lambert did not cruise through this draw though, she was stretched to five games in the semis by last year’s finalist @Michele Morissette and then taken to four by the upstart Parent. Bravo to Parent for breaking through with a marquee win over Christine Keay , who had more or less solidified herself as the #2 Canadian woman over the past few years with three straight singles finals appearances at Nationals.


Canadian Men’s Doubles:

A huge upset in the doubles final, as the Murray brothers were taken out by Iwaasa and Cullen in three. This was a rematch of last year’s final, and breaks the string of three straight Canadian doubles titles by the Murray brothers.


Canadian Women’s Doubles:

#1 seeds Lambert & Morissette defended their Canadian national doubles title by taking the 5-team round robin group without losing a match. A 3-way tie for second resulted in Keay and Prentice being the 2nd place finishers.


Canadian Mixed Doubles:

In a small round robin competition, @Christian Pocsai and @Ofelia Wilscam took the National mixed doubles draw title, a first for both. Unfortunately, this draw was purged of most of the top players by virtue of the workload it would have caused, something for the US to consider if/when we combine both singles and doubles qualifying into one event.


Canadian Pan Am Games team selection discussion;

So, the Canadian team selection process may now be a bit complicated by the above results, and thanks to their poor showing at the 2023 PARC. Canada finished 6th in Men’s and 10th in Women’s in Guatemala, meaning they were no where close to the threshold for getting three players in either gender. So just two men and two women will be selected to represent Canada in Chile. But who? Here’s your player pool:

– Men’s Singles: Murray, Iwaasa

– Men’s Doubles: Iwaasa, Cullen

– Mixed Doubles: Pocsai

Technically four players for 2 spots, though there’s a clear gap between Murray & Iwaasa and the others, so one would have to think that will be the team. It normally is Murray & Iwaasa at the major IRF events and i’d have to think it’d be the same in Chile.

Canadian Women’s team selection consideration.

Here’s the qualified female players under consideration:

– Women’s Singles: Lambert, Parent

– Women’s Doubles: Lambert, Morissette

– Mixed Doubles: Wilscam

A tough decision here; both Parent and Morissette have represented Canada internationally in each of the last three years, but Lambert is the double qualifier. However, as we know Lambert is a practicing medical doctor and may very well not be able to get away for a trip as long as the Pan Am games requires. I could see a repeat of the 2023 PARC team of Parent & Morissette in Chile, but we hope to see Lambert (the former #2 LPRT player) show up at the sport’s biggest stage.


Thanks for all the streaming on the weekend. Pablo Fajre and his IRT crew in Chicago, and @JJT R Ball and Timothy Baghurst in Winnipeg.


Next up?

Per our handy master racquetball calendar ……/1V6OTid6rZ356voXVkoV2sN7KMMb…/

We have a couple weeks off until the final LPRT stop of the season in Chesapeake, where the title is up for grabs for the first time since the late 2000s.



@USA Racquetball

@Racquetball Canada

USA and Canada Nationals previews

Can Erika make it a triple of US titles in Chicago? She already holds Doubles and Mixed from February. Photo 2021 US Open via Kevin Savory

It has been a minute since we last published in this space. But we’re to the end of May, which every year means Nationals time.

This year, the USA Racquetball did something a little different with its qualification, having doubles in February on its normal course then having just a National team qualifier at the Glass court club in Chicago land. The reasons behind this were partly financial in nature: National singles has struggled in attendance and in revenue for the last few years, so a combined event going forward seems inevitable. This weekend in Chicago there’s a small shootout in conjunction with the 15 top US nationals competing in a win-or-go-home singles competition for the National team slots.

r2sports link for USA:

Here’s a quick preview of USA competitions.

USA Men:

The Seedings for singles, in a change to some years’ past, is done by the USA Rankings as of the time of seeding. As a result, you may be somewhat surprised by the seeding. Jake Bredenbeck gets the #1 seed over two-time defending IRT pro champ @Daniel De La Rosa . The other slight surprise is probably Thomas Carter pipping Adam Manilla for the 4th seed despite their current IRT rankings being reversed. Otherwise the draw is probably as you’d expect. 2022’s champion Rocky Carson has fallen all the way to 6th as he’s essentially retired from IRT competition.

In the quarters:

– Jake advances past Indiana amateur James Black.

– Manilla should advance past Carter in a battle of lefties.

– In a rematch of the 2022 final, Carson takes on Alejandro Landa . It may look curious that the two finalists from last year are seeded 3rd and 6th, but that’s where the rankings fall and they’re probably a fair representation of the talent level right now. It is tough to know where Landa’s game is week in and week out, while Carson no longer tours and may be rusty against top competition. I’ll predict Carson in an upset.

– De la Rosa likely takes out @Sam Bredenbeck , who should advance past Texan amateur Limonciello in the play-in.


– Jake over Adam: amazingly these two have managed to avoid each other in all top competitions since 2017. Jake has never lost to Adam, and is playing better than ever, and should advance.

– DLR over Rocky; Rocky did get a h2h win over DLR back in march 2022 on these exact courts, but otherwise DLR has owned Rocky since mid 2019. DLR is qualified already for the team by virtue of his doubles win earlier in the year, but doesn’t want to leave anything to chance.

Finals: Playing for pride, as the two finalists are on the team, but I suspect Jake is more interested in owning a US national title than DLR. I think jake wins.


National team impact if these results hold. Right now the team is:

– Men’s Doubles: DLR and Landa

– Mixed Doubles: Manilla

– Men’s Singles projection: Jake and DLR.

(Note: post publishing i deleted in accurate claim that there’s Worlds in august. There’s World SENIORS in august, not regular worlds).

This would make for 4 players for 3 Pan Am Games slots, and would make for a difficult selection between Landa and Manilla for the third slot. Unless there’s other circumstances that arise, someone with a national title will be disappointed for the Pan Am games roster.

USA Women:

Just 5 players in Chicago, and like with Rocky above, we see the impact of the non-protected seeds on the essentially retired @Rhonda Rajsich , a finalist in 2022. Thanks to her inactivity playing, she’s dropped behind all the top USA women competitors and is seeded 4th here.

Kelani Lawrence gets the #1 seed despite being well behind Erika Manilla in the LPRT points standings right now, seemingly by virtue of a couple of h2h wins over Brenda Laime recently, who has now shot up to #2 overall.


in the quarters, Lexi York has a shot at topping Rajsich, but we’ll go with the legend to advance. She always comes to play in Nationals.

In the semis:

– Lawrence should advance past the winner of York/Rajsich, though Rhonda has had a lot of success beating Kelani in USA national events. They’ve met in this event every year since 2016 save one, and Rajsich has beaten Kelani in every year save one. So, Kelani has her work cut out for her; the winner here gets on the team, the loser is out.

– In the 2/3 seed semi, @Erika Manila faces a familiar foe in Hollie Scott , who she keeps running into on the pro side as well. Manilla has handled Hollie multiple times in the past year and has only lost to the Washington native once in 7 known meetings. Manilla moves on.

In the final, i’d expect Manilla to win over Lawrence if seeds hold; these two have very little history playing each other, kind of surprising given that the top of the US women’s pool has been the same four players for years.


National team impact if these results hold. Right now the team is:

– Women’s Doubles: Erika and Michelle Key

– Mixed: Erika

– Singles projection: Erika and Kelani

So, if these results hold, it’d be three women qualified for the team for the Pan Am Games … but we only get 2 spots thanks to our team’s poor finish at the 2023 PARC. See for the team qualifications to Pan Am games: host nation plus top 3 countries at PARC get 3 players, the rest two.

Erika triple-qualifying would make one decision pretty easy, but how would you decide between Key and Kelani for the 2nd spot? And, what if we get a surprise singles finalist (Scott or Rhonda?) That’d throw a huge monkey wrench into the team selection procedures.

I don’t envy the US National team committee, who will have to make some tough decisiosn on who to send to the sport’s marquee event later this year.


Canada Preview

Trackie site for the event:…/entry-list/matches/486924/

Why does Canada use Trackie instead of R2sports? Because of new regulations in Canada that require personal information of Canadian citizens to be kept in Canada.

Canada is having their Nationals this week and weekend as well, but they’re stretching this into an all week affair and holding Singles, Doubles and Mixed all at once. Lots of playing for the top guns, with round robins all week feeding into single elimination draws this weekend.

On the Men’s singles side, 11 straight Canada national selection events/nationals tournaments have come down to the same two guys in the final: Samuel Murray and @Coby Iwaasa . With all due respect to the rest of the Canadian men right now, its hard not to think this weekend will be anything other than the 12th. Mostly its Murray taking the titles, but their last meeting went 12-10 in the fifth, and Iwaasa can play. I’m predicting Murray over Iwaasa in another barn burner.

Women’s Singles:

Frederique Lambert is in the draw, which usually means everyone else is playing for 2nd place. Lambert has just ONE loss in Canadian nationals in the last decade, a finals loss to Jen Saunders (now the sporting director for Racquetball Canada) in May of 2014.

So, we’ll go out on a limb and say that Frederique will take this championship. The next four seeds in Christine Keay , Michele Morissette , and Parent Julienne will jocky for 2nd place.


Canadian Doubles:

Men’s Doubles: They’re already to the semis by the time you’re reading this, and the #1 seeded Murray brothers are still the favorites. With Canada only getting two Pan Am games spots, likely we’ll see Murray play with Iwaasa at the Pan Ams like he normally does internationally.

Women’s Doubles: Lambert is teamed up with Morissette to be the formidable #1 seed, and only Keay/Prentice seem like they have a shot to unseat them.

Mixed Doubles: none of the singles favorites are playing in Mixed, so the draw is wide open. Four teams are playing, which means we’re going to likely have a brand new international rep for Canada at the next PARC event in the spring of 2024.

Streaming at @usUSA Racquetball or Racquetball Canada Facebook pages; JT R Ball and Timothy Baghurst are in Canada doing the streaming and broadcasting for Canada, while the IRT’s Pablo Fajre is in Chicago with the IRT team handling the streaming.

LPRT Sweet Caroline Grand Slam Wrap-Up

Ana Gabriela Martinez wins her second pro title. Photo via Gaby

Congrats to your winners on the weekend:

– Singles: Gaby Martinez

– Doubles: Longoria & Salas

PRS match reports:

– Singles

– Doubles:

Gaby gets her second career win (first was at the 2021 World Singles & Doubles event). Longoria & Salas win their 37th pro doubles title together since we started tracking it in Aug 2014.

R2 Sports App home page for event:


Lets review the notable matches in the Singles draw.

In the 32s, no surprises and no upsets. A couple of matches to comment on:

– Guatemalan teammates duked it out an went breaker before Gaby took out MRR.

– Kelani Lawrence handled upstart US junior Naomi Ros more easily this week than Manilla did last, taking her out 5,8.


In the 16s, a shock loss that throws the title race back into serious question.

– #1 Paola Longoria was dominated in a 7,6 loss to Ana Gabriela Martínez . This is Longoria’s 6th loss this season; by way of comparison she had 6 total losses in the prior six seasons. To say that this season has been shocking is an understatement, and this loss is equally so. Yes, Gaby has beaten Paola before, but for their careers in all competitions Longoria led the h2h 22-1 before this match. We’ll talk about the points implications later on, but this is a dagger to Longoria’s chances of retaining her crown.

– #8 @Carla Munoz got a very solid win over #9 Angelica Barrios in two close games. Excellent win for Carla, and she gets a crack at Gaby next.

– For the 2nd week in a row, #12 Maria Jose Vargas cruises past #5 Jessica Parrilla , this time 7,3.

– #4 Erika Manilla held off the upset-minded @Valeria Centella 2,12 to setup a rematch with Vargas from last week.

– #3 @Alexandra Herrera avoided a second major upset in a row and advanced past USA national @Hollie Scott in two.

– #6 Brenda Laime held off an opponent she’s struggled with lately in #11 Lawrence, guaranteeing that she remains in the top 8.

– #7 Natalia Mendez becomes the latest victim of Samantha Salas , who seems to be on a bit of a come-back. It was 11-10 in the end.

– #2 Montse Mejia held serve once again against Colombian @Cristina Amaya to move into the quarters and setup a rematch with Salas, who upset her last week. Mejia has to be looking at the draw and realizing the opportunity she has this week; lets see if she can avoid the pitfalls of looking ahead of Salas.


In the Quarters:

– #17 Gaby continued her run, downing #8 Munoz in two games. These two have only met a handful of times, and never since 2017.

– #4 @EErika Manila reversed the result from last week and got her first ever win over Vargas in a power-hitting, tight, tense match that went down to the wire 11-10.

– #6 @Brenda Laime continues to put her name into the conversation, topping #3 Herrera in a breaker to move into the semis.

– #2 Mejia reversed the result herself against Salas, to whom she lost at this juncture last week, by blanking the veteran in the breaker to move into the semis.


In the Semis, a couple of interesting results:

– #4 Manilla had beaten Gaby the last two times they met … but Gaby took control of this semi early and won in two games to secure just her second ever career pro final.

– #6 Laime shocked #2 Mejia, who squanders a golden opportunity to essentially lock down the season ending #1 spot given her rival’s early loss, and the Colombian moves into the final for the second straight week with a really close 14,12 match. both ladies were powering the ball on the hard courts in Greenville, and Laime’s relentless pounding to Mejia’s forehand indicated an interested strategy that paid off.

Incredible how, a year ago, we were asking whether Herrera was the heir apparent to Longoria … and now we’ve had Mejia win four straight tournaments and we’ve had Laime make the finals of two straight. The top of the LPRT is tightening, and it makes for great week-in, week-out drama.

In the Finals, Gaby controlled the match and took the title, her 2nd ever career win.


Points Implications of results;

As mentioned above, Mejia loses a golden opportunity to really put herself in the driver’s seat for the title by not taking advantage of Longoria’s loss. When the 2022 Sweet Caroline event expires in a week’s time, Longoria will still hold about a 70-point lead in the standings.

The last event of the season in Chesapeake is a grand slam, and will replace the 2022 KC grand slam in the rankings. Paola won KC, Mejia lost in the final, so Paola is “defending” about 100 more points than Montse. Which means effectively that Mejia has the points advantage going into the last event of roughly 30 points. So Paola has to beat Montse’s result by a 30 point margin in Virginia to retain the title. That will probably mean that Paola has to do a “round better” than Montse to win; if they both lose in the same round, Montse should get the title.

Other points machinations: Mejia, Laime, Barrios, and Gaby all missed this event last year, so all four will jump dramatically in the rankings.

– Mejia tightens the race but stays at #2

– Laime jumps from #6 to #5 (if she had won, she would have gone to #3)

– Barrios jumps from 9 to 6

– Gaby jumps from 19 to 11.


Doubles review

Longoria & Salas held serve and took out their Mexican rivals Herrera/Mejia with relative ease to claim their 37th pro title. This goes along with their dozens of amateur and international titles together and continues by far the most successful doubles pairing in the sport’s history.


Other draws

– Centellas took her 2nd straight U21 title with ease, beating Diaz and Katz easily.

– In Men’s Open, the top 4 seeds advance to the semis (Kelly brothers, Pruitt, Cunningham). Maryland native took out Cunningham and then Joe Kelley to claim the title.


Thanks for all the streaming on the weekend from the LPRT crew.

Thanks to the Tourney Directors Jerry J Josey Jr. & Jacob Varughese for putting this event on!

Reminder to Players! Please like and follow this page so that when I tag you, you see it. Facebook will only retain tags of people that like/follow a page, which means lots of you are not getting the notoriety of getting tagged and noticed on Facebook. If your name is here and it isn’t tagged … it probably means I attempted to tag you but Facebook stripped it.


Next up?

Per our handy master racquetball calendar …

The next major event is over Memorial Day weekend, when US National team singles qualifying occurs in Chicago. That same weekend Canadian Nationals goes on as well. Then, the LPRT visits Chesapeake for its last event of the season in mid-June.




LPRT Sweet Caroline Grand Slam Preview

Can Centellas get another bracket-busting win in Greenville? Photo via deportesbolivia

The LPRT is back in action just a few days after its last event, which was filled with upsets and surprising results. Now the tour is in Greenville, South Carolina, for one of its favorite stops; the Sweet Caroline Grand Slam.

The season-end race has tightened up considerably, and the results at this grand slam will play a huge part in determining whether the title will be Longoria’s 14th or Mejia’s first.

R2 Sports App link:

24 ladies are here, including the top 15 players and 18 of the top 20 overall.


Lets preview the draw.

Because there’s not a ton of movement down-rankings from event to event, we’re seeing some repeated matchups in both the 32s and the 16s from last week. And we’re seeing some intriguing meetings

– Its Guatemala vs Guatemala in the 16/17 match, as long-time doubles partners and National team members @Ana Gabriela Martínez takes on Maria Renee Rodriguez for a shot at #1 Longoria

– Two Argentinans Maria Katz and Maria Jose Vargas face off to play into Jessica Parrilla

– Impressive US Junior National team member and reigning16U world champ @Naomi Ros gets a shot at US Adult team member Kelani Lawrence , a week after taking a game off of another US team member Manilla. Can she get a breakthrough win here?

– Not for the first time this season, Colombian team mates Cristina Amaya and Maria Paz Riquelme have to face off.


round of 16:

– #1 Paola Longoria projects to face Martinez again; last week was a tight 13,14 win. Can Gaby push it to a breaker this week?

– In the always-close #8/#9 matchup, a solid all South American match between Bolivian Angelica Barrios and Chilean @Carla Munoz . Barrios has owned this matchup as of late and is the favorite here, but Munoz is coming off a solid win last week and will try to keep it close.

– For the 2nd week in a row, Vargas plays into Parrilla, and likely gets the upset win. Bad luck for Parrilla.

– This week, USA national champ Erika Manilla gets another precocious opponent in Valeria Centellas . The U21 is coming off her career best win over Herrera last week, and has a h2h win over Manilla earlier this season. This is definitely danger zone for Manilla and this could be another major upset. Added wrinkle; these two are playing doubles together this week.

– #3 Alexandra Herrera projects to face US National Hollie Scott and should advance, but her shock loss last week has opened up questions about her game.

– #6 Brenda Laime may have made the final last week, but she projects to face #11 Kelani Lawrence , who’s beaten her twice since December. I’m going with the upset loss; from the finals to one-and-done for Laime.

– #7 Natalia Mendez is reeling in the rankings, and now projects to face #10 Samantha Salas , who beat her in their last meeting in June and has generally controlled their h2hs. Upset watch here.


Projected Qtrs:

– #1 Longoria versus Barrios: Barrios shocked Longoria in Boston earlier this year, so we know she can get wins. But is Longoria too focused knowing what’s at stake? I think so, and I think she wins.

– #12 Vargas over #4 Manilla; a rematch of the San Antonio quarters, where Vargas crushed Erika 3,6. I see no reason not to think a similar result happens, unless the Manilla coaching brain-trust comes up with a new gameplan to counter the powerful Vargas.

– #3 Herrera over #11 Lawrence; these two have met a few times, and Kelani has made things close, but the lefty is still 10-0 lifetime versus Kelani, looking to make it 11-0.

– #2 @Montse Mejía set to lock horns with Salas again, and somehow avoid another upset quarter-final outster. Few would have predicted last week’s Salas win: will Mejia get re-focused for this week knowing that she likely needs two wins to secure the title? The pressure is on and I think she rises to the occasion.


– Longoria over Vargas: when the chips are down and the pressure is on, I’ll take Longoria.

– Mejia over Herrera: Mejia’s quote familiar with Alexandra’s game by this point and has won their last few meetings (4 straight wins since August) and if she can get past Salas I like her chances for the final.

Final: if it can be #1 vs #2, the pressure will be immense. I like Longoria to handle the pressure, but Mejia to handle Longoria. Mejia for the title and takes back control of the title race.


Doubles review

So much is at stake in singles, I wonder how contested the doubles will be. But after lots of partner shuffling, we have the two top doubles teams together and on opposite sides of the draw. #1 Longoria/Salas and #2 Herrera/Mejia are likely on a collision course for the Saturday night final. I’ll go with Longoria and Salas to retain the crown.



The U21 are in action again for the 2nd week running; this time 5 of the tour’s young pros will battle it out, with defending U21 Lprt champ Centellas the likely favorite. Look for a fun semis match between #2 Katz and #3 Ros, a great measuring stick for the Texan.


Look for Streaming in the regular places; follow the LPRT on Facebook and sign up to get notifications when they go Live.

Look for Timothy Baghurst, Jerry J Josey Jr., and Tj Baumbaugh on the mike, calling the shots!

Thanks to the Tourney Directors X and X for putting this event on!

Coincidentally, if you’re interested in playing Fantasy Racquetball for this event, the links to the brackets are advertised on LPRT’s main page. The winner each week gets free swag!



LPRT Battle at the Alamo Recap

Longoria back on top for the first time in months. Photo via US Open 2019, Kevin Savory

Congrats to your LPRT Pro winners on the weekend:

– Singles: Paola Longoria

– U21 Singles: Valeria Centellas

Paola returns to the winner’s circle for the first time in many months, a strange thing to say for someone who has 110 career tier 1 wins and, prior to this year, was a 95% favorite to win.

There was also a healthy Men’s Open Singles and a great Mixed Pro doubles event; read on for recaps.

R2 Sports App home page for event:


Lets review the notable matches in the Pro Singles draw.

Singles Match report in the PRS database:


In the 32s, no real upsets but a couple of notable results:

– @AAna Gabriela Martínez returned to the tour and downed LPRT vet Nancy Enriquez in two games 6,11.

– #5 Jessica Parrilla was taken to a breaker by the current Mexican 16U champ (and finalist at World Juniors last November) Yanna Salazar . Watch out for Salazar, the next in a long line of promising Mexican junior women.

– #4 @EErika Manila was really pressed by reigning US and World 16U champ @Naomi Ros, playing in her home town. Manilla took the first, 15-7, but Ros powered back to take the 2nd 15-9 and force a breaker. The reigning US champ took the breaker 11-6 but this match was closer than Erika probably wanted. Ros, like Salazar, is poised for a breakthrough.

– #7 @Angelica Barros got a walk-over when Maricruz Ortiz no-showed. That had to be a sigh of relief for the Bolivian; Ortiz took her out with relative ease at PARC in Guatemala earlier this month. I thought this draw opened up for Ortiz and predicted as much in my preview; she misses an opportunity to put some LPRT points on the board.


In the 16s, we got some great matches and some upsets.

– #1 Paola Longoria held serve against a top rival in Gaby, grinding out a 13,14 win. Gaby made a furious come-back attempt in game 2, coming back from 8-14 down to tie it, but Paola held on for the 2-game win.

– #8 @Carla Munoz got a very solid win over a top rival in #9 @Kelani Lawrence in a breaker to move into the quarters for the 4th time in 8 tourneys this year.

– #12 Maria José Vargas “upset” #2 Parrilla to move on; this was an expected win for the come-back Vargas; question is, how far back up the rankings can Vargas get with the newly vulnerable Longoria on her heels?

– #4 Manilla took out her fellow team USA mate Hollie Scott in two, a match that will help solidify Manilla’s seeding ahead of US Nationals.

– #14 Valeria Centellas got her best career win in topping #3 Alexandra Herrera . After exploding onto the scene in 2019, Centellas has struggled to get out of the 16s, but this win ensures her 3rd quarterfinal of the season.

– #11 Brenda Laime trounced #6 Natalia Mendez 7,6 to move on. Laime continues to be a dark-horse whenever she enters an event, with recent wins this season over Longoria, Herrera, Manilla, and now Mendez.

– #10 Samantha Salas made fast work of #7 Barrios to move into the quarters for the 91st time in her illustrious career.

– #2 Montse Mejia , who is on a 21 match win streak as of this round, made fast work of Colombian @Cristina Amaya to reach the quarters.


In the Quarters, some bracket busting.

– #1 Longoria dropped the first game to #8 Munoz (the first time in 21 meetings where Carla had taken a game off of Paola), then the champ ground out game 2 before turning the tie-breaker into a romp.

– #12 Vargas continued her comeback with a dominant 3,6 win over #4 Manilla. The two play a similar game … Vargas just plays it better right now.

– #11 Laime continued her run, ending Centellas’ weekend despite her big win.
– The big result; #2 Mejia goes down against the veteran #10 Salas.


In the Semis:

– Longoria turned the tide against Vargas, to whom she had lost two in a row, by grinding out a tie-breaker win.

– Laime took out Salas 11,11 to make her second ever pro final.

In the Finals, despite having a h2h win over Longoria earlier this season, Laime just seemed overwhelmed by the opportunity and Longoria crushed her 7,3 to claim the title.


Points Implications of results

For months i’ve been saying this title was Mejia’s to lose … and i’m still right, but this weekend’s results definitely closed the gap between the players. Longoria may hold a 400+ point advantage right now in the rolling 365-day standings, but Mejia’s ahead in season to date points. However, she squandered a huge chunk of her S-T-D points lead this weekend by losing in the quarters … and now the two players are nearly tied for the season. I have Montse with just an 11 point lead before the fractional points that the players get for winning an extra game here and there. Suddenly the last two events take on even more import. Simply put, Mejia cannot afford another early round loss to an opponent she should be beating if she wants the title.


Other Draws. There was no LPRT doubles, but we did get several other interesting draws in San Antonio.

– LPRT U21: touring pro Centellas topped three fellow U21 players to take the LPRT U21 draw without losing a game. She beat USA National team member @Annie Robert in the final 9,4. A solid weekend for the Argentine.

– Men’s Open: the Men’s “Open” draw featured two top-8 IRT pros, seemingly in violation of their player contracts unless there was some sort of deal made with the tour, and the Texas fans got some fireworks on and off the court.

Two Texans both stretched the top two seeds @Daniel De La Rosa and Alejandro Landa to tiebreakers in the quarter finals; Brendan Jennings took the first game 11 before falling 5,5. Meanwhile US Junior National team member @Cole Sendry gave #2 Landa everything he could handle, taking game one, diving all over the court and pushing the tie-breaker to 11-7. There were both on- and off-the-court issues here that may have ramifications for the senior member of the US Team; we’ll leave the commentary at that for now.

After the fireworks in the quarters, the rest of the draw went chalk, with DLR downing Christina Longoria with ease and Landa cruising past #3 @Alan Natera in two fast games to setup the expected final. In the final…DLR dropped the first game 14 to his US National doubles team partner before turning on the jets to win games 2 and 3 for the title and the cash.

– Mixed Pro: a great Mixed Pro Doubles draw featured 8 of the top 10 LPRT pros playing with a slew of IRT and other top players battled it out for an upset-filled Mixed draw.

In the end, #3 seeds and Husband/Wife Duo Natera/Munoz took the title over #1 Landa/Vargas in two close games.


Thanks for all the streaming on the weekend, especially from broadcasters Timothy Baghurst, Jerry J Josey Jr., and @Tj Baumbaugh] Also thanks to the excellent commentary from guest announcers like Richard Eisemann and Sandy Rios all weekend.

Thanks to the Tourney Director Mike Cantu for putting this event on!


Next up?

Per our handy master racquetball calendar ……/1V6OTid6rZ356voXVkoV2sN7KMMb…/

The LPRT is right back in action, with the tour flying to South Carolina for their annual Sweet Caroline grand slam in Greenville, SC, home of the Ladies pro hall of fame.

That will be the last event that players have to secure seeds ahead of the 2023 US National Singles team qualifier in Chicago at the end of the month. The Men’s pros have a satellite in Costa Rica in June, but otherwise have nothing official until Denver’s event in August.