Saturday, October 6, 2018

Waselenchuk has chance to win 11th straight at 2018 UnitedHealthcare US Open

Kane Waselenchuk will have a chance to defend his International Racquetball Tour (IRT) UnitedHeathcare US Open Racquetball Championship title in Minneapolis Sunday, as he defeated Andree Parrilla in the semi-finals, 15-3, 15-12. He'll play Daniel De La Rosa in the final, who was an upset winner over IRT #1 Rocky Carson, 8-15, 15-5, 11-5, in the other semi.

Waselenchuk won the first game against Parrilla handily, as he was up 14-0. But Parrilla didn't get shut out, and the momentum of scoring a few points seemed to carry over to game two, as he went up 3-1 on the 10 time defending champion. However, Waselenchuk came back and tied the score at 4-4.

From there Waselenchuk scored the next five points to lead 9-4. He maintained the lead for the rest of the game, and extended it to eight points at 13-5. But credit to Parrilla, who didn't roll over, and kept fighting, including denying Waselenchuk six match points, as he drew within two at 14-12.

It was seventh time lucky for Waselenchuk, as he ended the match on his 7th match point, when a long rally finished as Parrilla dove unsuccessfully to the back wall to try to keep the ball in play.

In the other semi-final, Carson looked completely in control in game one, as he went up 9-1. De La Rosa did make it close at 11-8, but that made the final score of 15-8 seem flattering. It was a complete reversal in game two, as De La Rosa found his shooting shoes, and went up 8-1, and cruised to 15-5 win.

Cue the tie-breaker. It started slowly. After 26 rallies, only 5 points had been scored. But De La Rosa had 4 of them. More back and forth rallies led to a 6-2 De La Rosa lead. The points came quickly after that.

Carson cut the lead to two at 6-4, but De La Rosa extended it to 8-4 with two forehand winners. Carson got a side out with a forehand pinch shot, and scored a point with another forehand winner, but De La Rosa ended his run with one of the many backhand winners he hit in the breaker.

Indeed, he hit three backhand winners on consecutive rallies to end the game and match, 11-5, with the last point a backhand pinch roll out winner.

Sunday's final will be only the 2nd US Open final without one of the top two seeds in the IRT final, and the first since Waselenchuk defeated Derek Robinson in 2003 for his first US Open title. He was the 3rd seed and Robinson 8th. This year Waselenchuk is again the 3rd seed and De La Rosa is 4th.

Look for IRT final live from Minneapolis via their various outlets, including the IRT Network, IRT Facebook page and IRT YouTube channel.

2018 UnitedHealthcare US Open
Minneapolis, Minnesota - October 3-7, 2018

Semi-finals - Saturday

4) Daniel De La Rosa d. 1) Rocky Carson, 8-15, 15-5, 11-5
3) Kane Waselenchuk d. 10) Andree Parrilla, 15-3, 15-12

Final - Sunday

3) Kane Waselenchuk v. 4) Daniel De La Rosa - Noon

Follow the bouncing ball….

1 comment:

jai said...

What time is Kane's match today