13th Annual Costa Rica Open IRT Tier 2 Recap

Montoya wins the double in Costa Rica. Photo Kevin Savory 2022 Portland IRT event

Congrats to your Pro winners on the weekend:

– IRT Men’s Singles: Rodrigo Montoya

– Open Doubles: Montoya & Javier Mar

– Open Singles: Diego Garcia

IRT Satellite events have specific rules about entry (only half the top 8 players are allowed to enter), which is primarily why i do not enter them into the database. I don’t want to “give credit” for tournament wins where half the top 10 was banned from entering.

Satellites do play an important part in the IRT tour though. Depending on the number of tier one events in the current 365 day rolling calendar, points earned at satellite events may or may not “count” towards a player’s ranking. As I write this article, the IRT has only 8 Tier 1s in its current 365-day window, which means that the points calculation takes a player’s 8 best results (Tier1 or otherwise) to total up their current point total. If a player has played in all 8 tier1s plus some satellite events, then the running point total will have the lowest X number of events subtracted from their overall total until they get down to the top 8 scores.

For example: Andree Parrilla plays a lot of events; he has played in all four satellite events in the last 365 days before the Costa Rica Open, and as a result, his IRT points total is all his tier 1 points minus three lowest point totals (satellite or not). This is where satellite events come in handy; you can win a Tier 2 event (worth 120 points) and have it “replace” a poor showing in a tier1 Event (say, a round of 16 loss, which is only worth 90) and actually come out ahead. And of course whatever prize money you make is yours, irrespective of the points impact on your IRT ranking.

All that being said, a slew of IRT touring regulars were in San Jose competing for the Tier 2 points and prize money, and we also got a big draw of international players, so here’s a review of the draw.

R2 Sports App home page for event: https://www.r2sports.com/tourney/home.asp?TID=42435


In the 32s: we got some fun match-ups.

– CRC #2 @Jaime Mansilla got a solid win over Ecuadorian vet @Jose Daniel Ugalde to open.

– Bolivian turned Argentine @Gerson Miranda , who won World Juniors 18U back in 2019 before switching countries, got a solid win over #9 Rafael Gatica .

– #5 Carter Thomas survived a serious challenge from up-and-coming Mexican Junior @Jorge Gutierrez to move on in a breaker, and a heck of a round of 32 match.

– #23 @Sebastian Hernandez , Mexican world u18 champ a couple years ago, cruised past Guatemala’s #1 Juan Salvatierra 12,4

– #26 @Rodrigo Salgado upset touring veteran #7 @Carlos Ramirz in the opener.


In the 16s:

– #9 Diego Gastelum and Miranda had a barn-burner, with Gastelum coming out on top in an 11-8 breaker.

– Carter was pressed by international vet Guatemalan Edwin Galicia but moved on.

– #3 Erick Trujillo made a statement against fellow Mexican 20-something Elias Nieto , beating him 0,7

– #6 Eduardo Portillo dodged a bullet and advanced past the dangerous Bolivian turned Argentine @DDiego GarcĂ­a 13,7. Thought this would be closer, given Lalo’s time away.


In the Quarters

– #1 Rodrigo Montoya crushed his young Mexican rival Gastelum 2,4 to move on.

– #4 Alan Natera took out Carter by the heavy scoreline of 5,2

– #3 Trujillo got a solid career win over #6 Portillo to kind of re-settle where these two players rank right now in the world order of men’s pro racquetball.

– #2 and home town favorite Andres Acuna was stretched to a breaker by Sebastian Hernandez before advancing.


In the Semis

– #1 Montoya cruised past Natera 7,6

– #2 Acuna had to dig deep, getting taken to a breaker by Trujillo before advancing.

In the Finals, Montoya went breaker but topped the home-town favorite Acuna to repeat as champion.


Points Implications of results

Interestingly, this tournament actually will impact the top of the rankings, if I have my XLS synced up right. Parrilla played this event last year and came in 2nd (worth 90 points). He misses it this year, so those 90 points expire off, but they’re not replaced with anything, so he’ll slightly fall in the rankings, enough to allow Kane Waselenchuk to move above him to #3. I also believe Trujillo and Natera may switch spots in the rankings, though both of these guys play a slew of events so it’s a little tough to figure out which results drop.


Other notable draws

– Open Doubles: They didn’t play “IRT Pro Doubles” but they did have an Open Doubles draw that featured all the pros. #1 seeds Montoya and his regular partner Javier Mar took the title, but played a knifes edge close game in the final over Carter & Natera to do so, winning 15-14, 15-14.

– Open Singles: Diego Garcia took the Open Singles draw, getting a walk-over against #1 seed Portillo when Lalo was injured.


Next up?

Per our handy master racquetball calendar …


We have a week break, then its the 2024 USA Junior Nationals in Pleasanton. The LPRT season has completed so we’ll do a 2023-24 recap soon. Then, in July we have the 2nd leg of the Outdoor Major season in Outdoor Nationals.



International Racquetball Tour

USA Racquetball

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *