Wednesday, February 10, 2016

2016 USA Racquetball Doubles Championships - Preview

The USA Racquetball National Doubles Championships begin this week at Arizona State University in Tempe, Arizona, and there is a bit of twist to the event this season, as USA Racquetball has changed its process for US Team qualifying. There are now three events involved in qualifying in singles for the US Team: the US Open, National Singles and a singles division at National Doubles. Thus, some of the top players are playing both singles and doubles in Tempe.

The result is a stronger field at the USA National Doubles Championship than has generally been seen in the last few years, so there should be a lot great racquetball going on this week. The doubles finals are on Saturday, and the singles finals are Sunday.

Jansen Allen won Men’s Doubles last year Jose Rojas, and they went on to win gold at the 2015 Pan American Games, but they have parted ways, as Rojas is playing with his brother Marco, and Allen is playing with Rocky Carson. Allen and Carson are the #1 seeds with the Rojas brothers #2.

Tony Carson - no relation to Rocky - also won National Doubles in the past with Allen, and this year he’s playing with Charlie Pratt. They are seeded 4th, and will play 5th seeds Anthony Herrera and David Horn in the quarterfinals.

Jake Bredenbeck and Jose Diaz are the other team with a serious shot at the title, as they were runners up at the 2015 US Open.

On the women’s side, the top seeds are last year’s runners up Aimee Ruiz and Janel Tisinger, as only half of the defending champions are participating this year. Rhonda Rajsich and Kim Waselenchuk won last year, but only Rajsich is in the field this year. won the women's title. Rajsich is playing with Sheryl Lotts and they are seeded 2nd.

Other threats for the title are the Key sisters - Danielle and Michelle, who were runners up 2013 and finished 3rd last year, as well as 4th seeds Cheryl Gudinas and Sharon Jackson, 5th seeds Da’monique Davis and Jacqueline Paraiso, and 6th seeds Kelani Bailey and Adrienne Haynes.

Singles Play

Doubles partners may be playing each other in singles, as the Rojas brothers are both on the top half of the draw with Allen and Carson on the bottom half. Carson is the 2nd seed and his first match will be against Jake Bredenbeck, which won’t be an easy one, but if he wins he’ll play the winner of 3rd seeded Allen and Jose Diaz. If Bredenebck and Diaz upset the 2nd and 3rd seeds there will also be a doubles partners showdown.

One partners showdown is assured as David Horn and Anthony Herrera play each other first with the winner to face top seed Jose Rojas in the quarterfinals.

Rhonda Rajsich is the top seed in Women’s Singles, and will play the winner of 8th seed Kelani Bailey and 9th seed Briana Jacquet. The other first round matches could be good ones also, as 6th seed Sheryl Lotts faces 11th seed Janel Tisinger, and 7th seed Adrienne Haynes will be up against 10th seed Jacqueline Paraiso.

Sharon Jackson is the 2nd seed, so she’ll play the winner of Haynes and Paraiso with 3rd seed Michelle Key taking on the winner of Lotts and Tisinger.

You can watch some of the action live from Tempe via the USA Racquetball website.

2016 USA Racquetball National Doubles Championships
Tempe, Arizona
US National Team Divisions

Men's Doubles

Quarter finals - Thursday

1) Jansen Allen & Rocky Carson - BYE
4) Charlie Pratt & Tony Carson v. 5) Anthony Herrera & David Horn

3) Jake Bredenbeck & Jose Diaz v. 6) Tom Durham & Brian Pineda
2) Marco Rojas & Jose Rojas v. 7) Carlos Bravo & Joe Young

Women's Doubles

Quarterfinals - Thursday

1) Aimee Ruiz & Janel Tisinger - BYE
4) Cheryl Gudinas & Sharon Jackson v. 5) Da’monique Davis & Jacqueline Paraiso

3) Danielle Key & Michelle Key v. 6) Kelani Bailey & Adrienne Haynes
2) Rhonda Rajsich & Sheryl Lotts v. 7) Miriam McCloskey & Fran Transfiguracion

Men’s Singles

Round of 16 - Thursday

1) Jose Rojas - BYE
8) David Horn v. 9) Anthony Herrera

5) Marco Rojas - BYE
4) Mauricio Zelada - BYE

3) Jansen Allen - BYE
6) Jose Diaz - BYE

7) Jake Bredenbeck - BYE
2) Rocky Carson - BYE

Women's Singles

Round of 16 - Thursday

1) Rhonda Rajsich - BYE
8) Kelani Bailey v. 9) Briana Jacquet

5) Da’monique Davis - BYE
4) Cheryl Gudinas - BYE

3) Michelle Key - BYE
6) Sheryl Lotts v. 11) Janel Tisinger

7) Adrienne Haynes v. 10) Jacqueline Paraiso
2) Sharon Jackson - BYE

Follow the bouncing ball....

No comments: