Sunday, March 18, 2018

Parrilla defeats Horn to win his 1st title at the 2018 IRT Shamrock Shootout

Andree Parrilla went one better than last year at the 2018 International Racquetball Tour (IRT) Shamrock Shootout in Lombard, Illinois, as he was the runner up in 2017, but Sunday, he won his first IRT Tier 1 event by defeating David Horn, 15-1, 15-9. It was a historic final, as both Parrilla and Horn were seeded outside the top 8, which was a first for an IRT final. The previous closest final with two high seeds was the Portland event earlier this season, when Charles Pratt, seeded 14th, defeated 8th seed Mario Mercado.

Parrilla is the fourth 1st time winner on the IRT this season, joining Charlie Pratt, Alejandro Landa and Sebastian Franco. He’s the 6ht different winner this season along with Kane Waselenchuk, Daniel De La Rosa, Pratt, Landa and Franco. Parrilla is also the 4th Mexican player to win an IRT event after Alvaro Beltran, De La Rosa and Landa. Overall, Parrilla is the 39th IRT event winner.

It was an “amazing experience,” said Parrilla. He “was looking for this [an IRT victory] since I started.” Asked about why he does so well in Lombard, Parrilla said it was “the people that come watch.”

“Hats off to Andree,” said Horn afterwards. He “played a great match,” and “played better.” Horn said Parrilla “had a better game plan … [that] … forced me to play below my level.”

But Horn also said he was “happy to make my first final,” saying “that’s awesome.”

Parrilla is a control player and he completely controlled game one winning it comfortably, as the great play Horn showed in winning his semi-final against Daniel De La Rosa on Saturday was completely missing.

In game two, it was more of the same, as Parrilla went up 8-1. But then Horn managed to turn the tide, and stepped up his game. He came back to tie the game at 9-9. Then the game stalled, as they went back and fourth for eight rallies.

Parrilla broke the deadlock with a forehand cross court shot, but Horn had a golden opportunity to win the rally, as he had a set up in the front court. However, Horn drove the ball back to where Parrilla was on the right side, and Parrilla was able to direct it over to the left well easily past Horn who was trapped in the front court.

Horn never served again, as Parrilla ran five straight points. Horn did call a timeout at 13-9, but when play resumed, he skipped a forehand return as Parrilla drove the ball to the right side.

Appropriately, Parrilla’s match winner was a forehand pinch shot: his favorite. Horn had hit a forehand wide angle pass that came off the back wall towards the right wall, perfectly in position for Parrilla to pinch it into the front right corner.

Sebastian Franco and Mario Mercado won the IRT Doubles title, as they got a forfeit win over Alejandro Landa and Samuel Murray, who picked up an injury during his semi-final with Parrilla Saturday, and he wasn’t able to play Sunday.

The next IRT event will be the Mercedes-Benz of Ft. Mitchell Raising Some Racquet for Kids in Cincinnati, Ohio, April 5-8.

2018 IRT Shamrock Shootout, March 15-18, 2018
Lombard, Illinois

Final - Sunday

Andree Parrilla d. David Horn, 15-1, 15-9

IRT Doubles - Final - Sunday

3) Sebastian Franco & Mario Mercado d. 4) Alejandro Landa & Samuel Murray, forfeit

Follow the bouncing ball….

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