Saturday, May 4, 2019

Waselenchuk survives semis versus Parrilla at 2019 IRT Syosset Open

It’s rare that you can say Kane Waselenchuk, the #1 player on the International Racquetball Tour (IRT), gutted out a match, as so often he’s crushed his opponents. But gut it out is what he did Saturday in the semi-finals of the 2019 IRT Syosset Open, as he came back from a game down to defeat IRT #4 Andree Parrilla, 9-15, 15-11, 11-0.

Parrilla played well against Waselenchuk, and afterwards Waselenchuk said “he put away the set ups that I was giving him” in game one. Parrilla didn’t miss many shots. Waselenchuk felt that Parrills had “just over a handful of skips” in the match. He credited Parrilla for making his shots, but Waselenchuk was not sharp early in the match. “Other than the tie-breaker, I really didn’t deserve to win that match,” said Waselenchuk.

But when you’re in tough, you need to make “an adjustment,” Waselenchuk said. He felt he was overhitting early. Then in the second game, it was “fighting,” said Waselenchuk. “Just keep fighting.”

In the tie-breaker, Waselenchuk felt a sense of “calmness” come over him, and that good things were going to happen. Waselenchuk also felt he got a few bounces in the breaker that he hadn’t gotten earlier in the match. Waselenchuk did get some free points in game three with back to back drive serve aces, one to the right and one to the left. He wasn’t getting that early in the match either.

Overall, we’re impressed by how well Parrilla played. He took a game off Waselenchuk, and is only the second player to do so since the IRT changed its match format from best of 5 games to best of 3 games in January 2018. Yet, he’ll probably rue a chance to beat the IRT’s #1 player.

Looking at the match score line, you could easily think that the 11-0 score in game three was a statement of quality by Waselenchuk. But really the match was a statement in persistence, and fighting through difficulty. On the racquetball court, Waselenchuk has rarely found himself in difficult spots, but he was in one today, and managed to get himself out of it.

The final will be 1 PM Sunday, and look for it at the usual IRT media outlets: The IRT Network, the IRT YouTube channel or the IRT Facebook page. All times Eastern.

2019 IRT Syosset Open, May 2-5, 2019
Syosset, New York

Semi-finals - Saturday

1) Kane Waselenchuk d. 4) Andree Parrilla, 9-15, 15-11, 11-0
2) Rocky Carson v. 3) Alejandro Landa - 2 PM

Final - Saturday

1) Kane Waselenchuk v. 2) Rocky Carson or 3) Alejandro Landa - 1 PM

Follow the bouncing ball….

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