Monday, November 16, 2015

Longoria wins singles, Lotts & Rajsich doubles at 2015 LPRT Paola Longoria Invitational

Paola Longoria defeated Rhonda Rajsich, 9-11, 11-8, 11-1, 11-2, to win the Ladies Professional Racquetball Tour (LPRT) Paola Longoria Invitational in Monterrey, Mexico Sunday for her fourth win in four LPRT events this season.

They were close early in game one, and tied at 3-3 and 5-5. But then Longoria edged ahead, going up 8-5. Rajsich called a timeout, and then proceeded to outscore Longoria 6-1 down the stretch, ending the game with a soft backhand rekill.

Game two was streaky, as Rajsich carried the momentum from game one to a 3-0 lead in game two. Then Longoria scored eight unanswered points to make it 8-3. They went back and forth with Rajsich scoring two more to make it 8-5 in Longoria’s favour.

Longoria got the next two points to make it 10-5. But on her first game point, she double faulted. That led to three Rajsich points, and a 10-8 score line. Longoria got the serve back at that point, and on the next rally forced Rajsich into skipping the ball.

In game three, Longoria turned up the pressure on Rajsich with her serve. She hit two service winners and got two return skips from Rajsich early in going out to a 7-1 lead. Four sideouts later, Longoria again had the serve, and hit a drive serve ace to the left side, and followed that with two service winners and another ace to close out game three 10-1.

Of her 11 points in game three, 8 were directly related to Longoria’s serve or a serve return error by Rajsich.

Game four again started out back and forth early, as they were tied at 2-2. But as in game three Longoria then hit two aces to make it 4-2, and didn’t allow Rajsich to score another point from there. The match winner came from a drive Z serve to the right side that Rajsich returned down the line, and then Longoria rekilled it.

However, Longoria didn’t win the doubles title with partner Samantha Salas, as they were defeated in the semi-finals by Rajsich and Sheryl Lotts, 15-9, 15-14. The reigning three time International Racquetball Federation (IRF) World Champions, Longoria and Salas were previously undefeated in doubles this season.

Rajsich and Lotts followed up the big semi-final upset by winning the final against 2nd seeds Michelle Key & Frédérique Lambert, 15-11, 15-14.

Rajsich and Lotts had previous doubles experience together, as they were the USA team in Women’s Doubles at the Pan American Championships earlier this year in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, where they lost in the quarterfinals to Maria Jose Vargas and Véronique Guillemette of Argentina.

LPRT will be back in action next month with the 24th Annual NES Associates Christmas Pro-Am in Arlington, Virginia. In the meantime, you can get your fix of LPRT action by watching matches on the LPRT LiveStream channel.

2015 LPRT Paola Longoria Invitational
Monterrey, Mexico


1) Paola Longoria d. 3) Rhonda Rajsich, 9-11, 11-8, 11-1, 11-2

Doubles - Semi-finals

4) Sheryl Lotts & Rhonda Rajsich d. 1) Paola Longoria & Samantha Salas, 15-9, 15-14
2) Michelle Key & Frédérique Lambert v. 3) Susana Acosta & Jessica Parrilla, 15-10, 15-12

Doubles - Final

4) Sheryl Lotts & Rhonda Rajsich d. 2) Michelle Key & Frédérique Lambert, 15-11, 15-14

Follow the bouncing ball….

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