Sunday, November 23, 2008

WPRO: New Jersey Open Results

First our apologies to the loyal readers of The Racquetball Blog. We were off this weekend slaying dragons, not entirely successfully, so incommunicado.

However, we have returned, and find that Veronica Sotomayor slayed some dragons of her own at the New Jersey Open - a satellite event on the Women's Professional Racquetball Organization (WPRO) tour. She won the title defeating three major players along the way.

Sotomayor began with the quarter final match TRB anticipated against reigning doubles World Champion Aimee Ruiz. Sotomayor won in four games, including an 11-0 turn (third) game. The score line was 11-5, 9-11, 11-0, 11-4.

Then in the semi-finals, Sotomayor made short work of WPRO #9 Doreen Fowler, winning in three straight games 11-4, 11-1, 11-4.

Rhonda Rajsich, the top women's player in the world, was on the other side of the draw. She got to the final by defeating Karen Morton, 10-12, 11-0, 11-6, 11-2.

But in the final, it was Sotomayor who came out on top, winning 11-8, 11-5, 10-12, 11-9. At 16, Sotomayor may be the youngest player to win a WPRO event, although this was not a WPRO main event.

For Rajsich, it's the fourth consecutive event - two main events (Canadian Classic & US Open) and two satellite events (Long Island Open, New Jersey Open) that she has failed to win after winning six WPRO main events in a row. Rajsich lost to Paola Longoria in the final of the Canadian Classic, and to Brenda Kyzer in the quarter finals of the US Open, as well as in the final of the Long Island Open to Cheryl Gudinas Holmes, in addition to Sunday's loss.

Thus, Rajsich is often getting to the finals, but has not been coming out on the winning end of late.

Men's action

The men's open draw of the New Jersey Open wasn't an International Racquetball Tour (IRT) event, but it did feature some ranked IRT players and a surprising finalist.

Nick Montalbano was the surprising finalist, as he's only #168 on the latest IRT rankings. But he reached the final by defeating Jason Sylvester (IRT #28) in the quarters, 15-6, 15-10, and Bradley Kirch (#64) in the semi-finals, 15-8, 8-15, 11-8. However, Montalbano's luck ran out as he lost the final to the legend, Ruben Gonzalez, 15-8, 15-4.

New Jersey Open - Women's Pro

Quarter finals

Doreen Fowler d. Christina Vandling, 11-4, 11-2, 11-8
Veronica Sotomayor d. Aimee Ruiz, 11-5, 9-11, 11-0, 11-4
Karen Morton d. Dolly Watson, 11-2, 11-5, 11-2
Rhonda Rajsich - BYE

Semi finals

Rhonda Rajsich d. Karen Morton, 10-12, 11-0, 11-6, 11-2
Veronica Sotomayor d. Doreen Fowler, 11-4, 11-1, 11-4


Veronica Sotomayor d. Rhonda Rajsich, 11-8, 11-5, 10-12, 11-9

Follow the bouncing ball....

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