Wednesday, December 8, 2021

Canada defeats Mexico in Boys U18 Doubles at 32nd IRF World Junior Championships

The big result of the second day of the medal round at the 32nd International Racquetball Federation (IRF) World Junior Championships in Guatemala City, Guatemala on Wednesday came in Boys U18 Doubles, as Canadians Nathan Jauvin and Christian Pocsai upset the 2nd seeded Mexican team of Sebastian Longoria and Erick Trujillo, 15-13, 5-15, 11-8, in the quarterfinals. They’ll play Bolivians Jhoel Acha and Nestor Zenteno on Friday in the semi-finals, after Bolivia beat Josue Bermeo and Pablo Vera of Ecuador, 15-11, 15-4, on Wednesday.

The result was a surprise, as Trujillo has had some good results on the International Racquetball Tour, yet he was not a dominant force in the match even though the Canadians did serve to him throughout the match with Jauvin hitting mostly straight lob and half lob serves to Trujillo on the left side. Pocsai hit drive Z serves to Longoria on the right side to good effect, and Jauvin made some good rekill shots off Trujillo’s would be winners.

After splitting the first two games, the Canadians led throughout the breaker and had their biggest lead of the match at 8-3. When Mexico got four straight points to get within one at 8-7, Canada called a timeout, and got a side out when play resumed.

They got two points to reach match point at 10-7, but Mexico stopped them there. The Mexicans picked up a point after getting the serve back when Jauvin skipped a shot with Trujillo jumping in front of him. Jauvin appeared to hesitate in taking the shot, and told the referee that Trujillo being right in front of him was a hinder, but the ref was having none of it.

Two rallies later, and Jauvin took a shot that Trujillo again jumped try to avoid, but got hit by. The referee called an avoidable, as he deemed Jauvin’s shot was straight in, so hitting Trujillo was taking away Jauvin's shot. Perhaps both of these plays should have been hinders, and the rallies replayed, but with no line judges there were no appeals to be made.

The next rally was match point number three, and the play came around to the back of the court with both Jauvin and Pocsai scrambling back to try to keep the ball in play and in doing so, Pocsai hit his partner in the head with his racquet while swinging for the ball. Jauvin actually did make contact with the ball, despite being hit, but his shot didn’t make the front wall. He stayed down on the court for a couple of minutes, as the Canadians took some injury time.

Once he was ready to resume playing, Jauvin’s first task was to hit arguably the most important serve of his life: a serve to try to beat Mexico at World Juniors. He served as he’d done throughout the match - a half lob to the left side, and the ball came off the side and back walls, so Trujillo - a right handed player - chose to turn and take it with his forehand. Yet he skipped the shot, giving Canada their 11th point and the match in three games.

The outcome is even more remarkable considering Jauvin and Pocsai lost their three matches in the group stage, including a 15-5, 15-6 loss to the Mexicans.

There were a few other matches that needed a tie-breaker to decide the winner, and one of them also involved Canadian Christian Pocsai, as he came back from a game down to defeat Santiago Gamboa of Costa Rica, 12-15, 15-1, 11-8, in Boys U16 Singles. There was another breaker in that division as Costa Rican Victor Segura also came back from a game down to defeat Colombian Duvan Torres, 4-15, 15-3, 11-9.

Other matches that went three games on Wednesday were in Boys U18 Doubles, as Costa Ricans Felipe Guillen and Andres Matamoros held on to defeat Colombians Juan Segovia and Duvan Torres, 15-14, 8-15, 11-7, and in Boys U14, Canadians Rafael Guillemette and Asher Pocsai’s comeback victory over Gabriel Matamoros and Andre Pacheco, 1-15, 15-8, 11-7. Then in one of the strangest story lines Guatemalans Jose Caceres and Hector Sierra split the first two games of their match wth Mexicans Jorge Gutierrez and Cristian Sanchez by identical scores: 15-1. In the breaker, Mexico managed to pull out the win by an 11-5 score.

No surprises - or even tie-breakers - in the girls matches, but there is likely some disappointment in Girls U14 with the way the medal round is set up. There are seven players in Girls U14 this year, so to give the players more matches, they played a double round robin in the group stage with two groups: one with three players and one with four players. The medal round has the three players from Group A all on the top of the draw, and the four player from Group B all on the bottom of the draw. So, only the players who reach the final will play someone different than who they have already played. That’s a bit odd, and might disappoint some of the players.

Reminder that matches are being live streamed from Guatemala, and they’ll be streaming through the finals on Saturday. Check with the IRF page on Facebook to see the streaming schedule.

32nd IRF World Championships
December 2-December 11 - Guatemala City, Guatemala

Girls U18 Singles - Quarterfinals - Thursday

Micaela Meneses (Bolivia) v. Jazmin Salvatierra (Guatemala) - 1 PM
Anna Salvatierra (Guatemala) v. Daniela Rico (Mexico) - 1 PM

Ximena Martinez (Mexico) v. Juliette Parent (Canada) - 1 PM
Martina Katz (Argentina) v. Sofia Freer (Costa Rica) - 1 PM

Girls U16 Singles - Quarterfinals - Wednesday

Jazmin Salvatierra (Guatemala) d. Florencio Villazon (Bolivia), 15-5, 15-14
Cynthia Gutierrez (Mexico) d. Andrea Reyes (Guatemala), 15-13, 15-11

Angela Ortega (Mexico) d. Tamara Wilscam (Canada), 15-10, 15-5
Kristin Salinas (Bolivia) d. Paula Mansilla (Chile), 15-11, 15-1

Girls U16 Singles - Semi-finals - Friday

Jazmin Salvatierra (Guatemala) v. Cynthia Gutierrez (Mexico) - 1 PM
Kristin Salinas (Bolivia) v. Angela Ortega (Mexico) - 1 PM

Girls U14 Singles - Quarterfinals - Thursday

Maria Fernanda Trujillo (Mexico) - BYE
Chloe Jauvin (Canada) v. Maria Argueta (Guatemala) - 5 PM

Yanna Salazar (Mexico) v. Jessie Vargas (Costa Rica) - 5 PM
Natalia Mendez (Bolivia) - BYE

Boys U18 Singles - Quarterfinals - Thursday

Felipe Guillen (Costa Rica) v. Pablo Vera (Ecuador) - 11 AM
Juan Segovia (Colombia) v. Sebastian Longoria (Mexico) - 11 AM

Luis Aguilar (Bolivia) v. Nathan Jauvin (Canada) - 11 AM
Erick Trujillo (Mexico) v. Jhoel Acha (Bolivia) - 11 AM

Boys U16 Singles - Round of 16 - Wednesday

Ezequiel Subieta (Bolivia) - BYE
Victor Segura (Costa Rica) d. Duvan Torres (Colombia), 4-15, 15-13, 11-9

Jose Caceres (Guatemala) d. Martin Carchi (Ecuador), 15-0, 15-6
Christian Sanchez (Mexico) - BYE

Hernan Ruiz Michel (Bolivia) - BYE
Hector Sierra (Guatemala) d. Joaquin Benalcazar (Ecuador), 15-2, 15-2

Christian Pocsai (Canada) d. Santiago Gamboa (Costa Rica), 12-15, 15-1, 11-8
Jorge Gutierrez (Mexico) - BYE

Boys U16 Singles - Quarterfinals - Thursday

Ezequiel Subieta (Bolivia) v. Victor Segura (Costa Rica) - Noon
Christian Sanchez (Mexico) v. Jose Caceres (Guatemala) - Noon

Hernan Ruiz Michel (Bolivia) v. Hector Sierra (Guatemala) - Noon
Jorge Gutierrez (Mexico) v. Christian Pocsai (Canada) - Noon

Boys U14 Singles - Quarterfinals - Wednesday

Martin Carchi (Ecuador) d. Leonardo Luconi (Costa Rica), 15-4, 15-10
Eder Renteria (Mexico) d. Marco Mamani (Bolivia), 15-14, 15-4

Marco Vedic (Ecuador) d. Rafael Guillemette (Canada), 15-4, 15-3
Sebastian Ruelas (Mexico) d. Gabriel Maramoros (Costa Rica), 15-7, 15-5

Boys U14 Singles - Semi-finals - Friday

Martin Carchi (Ecuador) v. Eder Renteria (Mexico) - 11 AM
Sebastian Ruelas (Mexico) v. Marco Vedic (Ecuador) - 11 AM

Boys U18 Doubles - Quarterfinals - Wednesday

Diego Gatica & Jaime Mansilla (Chile) - BYE
Felipe Guillen & Andres Matamoros (Costa Rica) d. Juan Segovia & Duvan Torres (Colombia), 15-14, 8-15, 11-7

Jhoel Acha & Nestor Zenteno (Bolivia) d. Josue Bermeo & Pablo Vera (Ecuador), 15-11, 15-4
Nathan Jauvin & Christian Pocsai (Canada) d. Sebastian Longoria & Erick Trujillo (Mexico), 15-13, 5-15, 11-8

Boys U18 Doubles - Semi-finals - Thursday

Diego Gatica & Jaime Mansilla (Chile) v. Felipe Guillen & Andres Matamoros (Costa Rica) - 3 PM
Jhoel Acha & Nestor Zenteno (Bolivia) v. Nathan Jauvin & Christian Pocsai (Canada) - 3 PM

Boys U16 Singles - Round Robin Group Stage Standings - Wednesday

1. Christian Sanchez & Jorge Gutierrez (Mexico) - 5-0
2. Jose Caceres & Hector Sierra (Guatemala) - 3-2
3. Javier Farfan & Ezequiel Zubieta (Bolivia) - 2-3
4. Santiago Gamboa &.Victor Segura (Costa Rica), 0-5

Boys U14 Doubles - Round Robin Group Stage Standings - Tuesday

1. Eder Renteria & Sebastian Ruelas (Mexico) - 3-0
1. Marco Mamani & Marco Vedic (Bolivia) - 3-0
3. Tomas Alvarado & Juan Pinedo (Colombia) - 2-2
4. Rafael Guillemette & Asher Pocsai (Canada) - 0-3
4. Gabriel Metamoros & Andre Pacheco (Costa Rica) - 0-3

Girls U18 Doubles - Semi-finals - Friday

1) Micaela Meneses & Florencio Villazon (Bolivia) v. 4) Fabi Landry & Maria Laura Villacreses (Ecuador) - 4 PM
2. Ximena Martinez & Daniela Rico (Mexico) v. 3. Sofia Freer & Abigail Solano (Costa Rica) - 4 PM

Girls U16 Singles - Round Robin Group Stage Standings - Wednesday

1. Andrea Reyes & Anna Salvatierra (Guatemala) - 5-0
2. Natalia Mendez & Kristin Salinas (Bolivia) - 4-1
2. Cynthia Gutierrez & Angela Ortega (Mexico) - 4-1
4. Yanna Salazar & Maria Fernanda Trujillo (Mexico) - 3-2
5. Jimena Gomez & Jimena Rodriguez (Costa Rica) - 2-4
6. Ofelia Wilscam & Tamara Wilscam (Canada) - 0-5
6. Ared Arce & Ashly Arce (Costa Rica) - 0-5

Girls U14 Doubles - Final - Saturday

Yanna Salazar & Maria Fernanda Trujillo (Mexico) v. Ared Arce & Ashly Arce (Costa Rica) - 11 AM

Follow the bouncing ball....

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