Friday, October 5, 2012

2012 US Open - IRT QFs, Waselenchuk, Carson, Beltran & Crowther win

Chris Crowther has reached the US Open semi-finals for the 2nd consecutive year, as he defeated Daniel De La Rosa, 11-9, 4-11, 5-11, 11-8, 11-6, at the 2012 United Healthcare US Open in Minneapolis in what was a very gritty performance for the 6th ranked player on International Racquetball Tour (IRT). It was a hard hitting match with the proof coming with the second broken ball of the match at 5-5 in the first game.

In that first game, it seemed that Crowther tweaked something in his torso and clearly seemed to labouring to get through the match. Nevertheless he was able to do so and more credit to him for that.

During the match Crowther was charged with several foot faults by stepping over the front of the service box when drive serving. On second serve, he used a off speed half lob, and generally served everything to De La Rosa's backhand side.

De La Rosa used a greater variety of serves, although early on it seemed the straight lob down the right side wall - to Crowther's forehand - was what was working best.

Game four was close early, then Crowther took a 7-3 lead in mid-game. He extended that lead to 10-5 and a tie-breaker looked like a certainty. But De La Rosa fought back and got within three points of the match at 10-8 down, when Crowther finally finished the game off.

Game five was similar, as Crowther went up 6-3 and 8-5, but De La Rosa could only manage one point after that as Crowther finished off the game at 11-6 to take the match.

More grit

The other gritty performance of the quarter finals was by Tony Carson, but it was in a losing effort, as he went down to IRT #1 Kane Waselenchuk, 11-1, 11-13, 11-4, 11-4. The grit came in that Carson lost to Waselenchuk 11-1, 11-2, 11-1 in the last IRT event last month in Kansas City, so it didn't seem likely that he'd do any better here.

And after 11-1 loss in game one, it didn't seem like it would be any different. Especially as Waselenchuk went up 5-0 in game two.

However, Carson dug in and strung together eight straight points to take a 8-5 lead. Waselenchuk struck back and led 9-8 when Carson took a time out. But Waselenchuk extended the lead to 10-8, yet Carson wouldn't give in.

Carson got two point to tie it at 10 and then fought off another game point, when Waselenchuk went ahead 11-10. But Carson again came back and got three straight points to take game two and level the match at one game apiece.

In game four, they were close early, and tied 4-4, when Waselenchuk put up seven unanswered points to win it. In game five, Carson took the first two points, and then Waselenchuk took the next 10 to get to match point at 10-2.

However, Carson again wouldn't let up, as he fought off four match points and scored a couple of his own before Waselenchuk ended it at 11-4.

It's the first time Waselenchuk has lost a game outside a final since March, when Jose Rojas took game one against him in the semis in Florida. His last quarter final game loss was against Anthony Herrera last year in Kansas City. Waselenchuk won both those matches in four games.

In the other quarter finals, Alvaro Beltran put an end to Alex Ackermann's best US Open of his career with a dominant victory winning 11-3, 11-3, 11-2, and #2 seed Rocky Carson defeated 7th seed Shane Vanderson, 11-3, 10-12, 11-9, 11-7.

The IRT Network is streaming the US Open live and some of the matches will be viewable for free all tournament.

2012 United Healthcare US Open
Minneapolis, Minnesota


Quarter finals

(1) Kane Waselenchuk d. (9) Tony Carson, 11-1, 11-13, 11-4, 11-4
(4) Alvaro Beltran d. Alex Ackermann, 11-3, 11-3, 11-2

(6) Chris Crowther d. Daniel De La Rosa, 11-9, 4-11, 5-11, 11-8, 11-6
(2) Rocky Carson d. (7) Shane Vanderson, 11-3, 10-12, 11-9, 11-7


(1) Kane Waselenchuk v. (4) Alvaro Beltran
(2) Rocky Carson v. (6) Chris Crowther

Follow the bouncing ball….

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