Saturday, October 25, 2014

Two two time champions in Girl's singles at World Junior Championships

Two of last year's champions in girl's singles successfully defended their titles Saturday at the 26th International Racquetball Federation (IRF) World Junior Racquetball Championships in Cali, Colombia, as Mexicans won four of the six girl's World Cup divisions. The World Cup divisions are U14, U16 and U18 with both singles and doubles competitions.

Alexandra Herrera of Mexico won the Girl's U18 title by defeating team-mate and last year's U18 champion, Lucia Gonzalez, 11-15, 15-6, 11-8. They were tied at 8-8 in the tie-breaker, but it was left-handed Herrera who managed to get the last three points with the championship point coming from a pinch to the front left corner.

Herrera was a double winner Saturday, as she and Ximena Gonzalez defeated Gabriela Martinez and Maria Renee Rodriguez of Guatemala, 15-9, 7-15, 11-2, to take the U18 doubles title.

After winning game one, the Mexicans got down early in game two, trailing 6-2 and 10-3. They got a few more points before the Guatemalans forced a third and deciding game.

But that game was all Mexico, as they went up early, and were never threatened, as they were at 8-0 before Guatemala got on the board. The match winning point was a Gonzalez pinch to the right corner that Martinez unsuccessfully dove to retrieve.

Martinez was successful in defending her title in Girl's U14 singles, as she defeated Wanda Carvajal of Bolivia, 15-2, 15-9, in the only girl's final that did not involve a Mexican player.

Diana Aguilar of Mexico also won again in Girl's U16, as last year's champion beat Melania Sauma of Costa Rica, 15-5, 15-13. But unlike Herrera, Aguilar lost the U16 doubles final with Ana Sofia Gasca to Sauma and Sofia Soley (Costa Rica), 15-10, 15-6. Thus, Aguilar and Sauma were one and one against each other Saturday.

Finally, the U14 doubles title went to Mexicans Monserrat Mejia and Andrea Ramirez, but they needed a tie-breaker to defeat Wanda Carvajal and Adriana Homsi of Bolivia, 6-15, 15-10, 11-9.

The Mexicans were up big in the breaker at 9-4, but almost threw the match away, as the Bolivians stormed back helped by some Mexican errors. After a Mexican timeout at 9-9, the Mexicans got a side-out to get the serve back.

On the next rally, a Mexican shot appeared to skip, but was called good by the referee. The Bolivians appealed the call but one lineperson agreed with the referee's call, so it stood. That made it 10-9.

Mejia, playing the left side, hit a forehand from centre to the back left corner on the next rally that got caught up in the corner, and Carvajal was unable to retrieve it.

In the breaker, the Bolivians were playing an I formation with Carvajal taking the shots at the back and Homsi getting the balls at the front. It got them two points from the championships, but not closer.

The matches that were streamed live will be archived, and available early next week via the IRF Network.

26th IRF World Junior Racquetball Championships
Cali, Colombia

Girl's U18 Singles Final

Alexandra Herrera (Mexico) d. Lucia Gonzalez (Mexico), 11-15, 15-6, 11-8

Girl's U16 Singles Final

Diana Aguilar (Mexico) d. Melania Sauma (Costa Rica), 15-5, 15-13

Girl's U14 Singles Final

Gabriela Martinez (Guatemala) d. Wanda Carvajal (Bolivia), 15-2, 15-9

Girl's U18 Doubles Final

Ximena Gonzalez & Alexandra Herrera (Mexico) d. Gabriela Martinez & Maria Renee Rodriguez (Guatemala), 15-9, 7-15, 11-2

Girl's U16 Doubles Final

Melania Sauma & Sofia Soley (Costa Rica) d. Diana Aguilar & Ana Sofia Gasca (Mexico), 15-10, 15-6

Girl's U14 Doubles Final

Monserrat Mejia & Andrea Ramirez (Mexico) d. Wanda Carvajal & Adriana Homsi (Bolivia), 6-15, 15-10, 11-9

Follow the bouncing ball....

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