Saturday, September 10, 2022

Herrera, Lawrence & Scott winners at 2022 LPRT at the Beach tournament

Alexandra Herrera broke Brenda Laime’s glass slipper in the final of the Ladies Professional Racquetball Tour (LPRT) by defeating her, 15-7, 15-12, to win the 2022 LPRT at the Beach tournament presented by INVICTA in Chesapeake, Virginia. Laime, the 8th seed, was in her first career LPRT final having beaten both LPRT #1 Paola Longoria and #6 Erika Manilla on Friday, but Herrera, the LPRT’s #2 player, proved to be one hurdle too many for Laime.

Herrera got a jump start in the final, going up 5-0, and you thought maybe the moment was too big for Laime. However, she showed that was not the case by coming back and taking a lead at 7-6. However, Herrera shut the door on her opponent from there, tying the game at 7-7 and then going on to win game one 15-7.

In game two, the players were close all the way, with the lead switching back and forth. Laime actually led late in the game at 12-9, and looked like she was going to force a tie-breaker. However, Herrera again held her opponent scoreless as she came back, and scored six unanswered points to win the game, 15-12, and the match in two straight games. The win is Herrera's 3rd on tour to go with two she won last season.

Despite the loss, Laime clearly had a breakout tournament, reaching her 1st final and beating Longoria along the way. She’s more of an all round player than a shooter or a power player. Laime does counter punch well, using good hands play to use her opponents’ power against them or turning their loose shots into winners. Also, she hustles around the court very well, and is happy to dive for a ball if that’s what’s needed to keep the rally going.


Kelani Lawrence and Hollie Scott won their first LPRT Doubles title by beating Valeria Centellas and Paola Longoria in the final Saturday, 15-1, 15-12. Thus, Longoria - the LPRT’s #1 player - will leave Virginia without a title in singles or doubles. That doesn’t happen very often, although it did once last year, when Herrera defeated Longoria in singles at the Vero Beach Open and then Herrera and Montserrat Mejia beat Longoria and Maria Renee Rodriguez in the doubles final.

After winning the first game comfortably, Lawrence - playing on her home courts this weekend - and Scott also started well in game two, going up 5-1 and 10-4. However, Longoria and Centellas are both World Champion doubles players, so they were not going to be brushed aside that easily.

Indeed, Longoria and Centellas came back and tied the score at 11-11, and then took a small lead at 12-11. Scott hit a backhand pinch shot to tie it at 12-12, and they got to match point as Longoria skipped two shots on back to back rallies. So she called a timeout.

When play resumed, Scott skipped a backhand that gave the serve back to Centellas and Longoria. But winners by Scott and Lawrence got them the serve back and their second match point opportunity. Longoria hit a forehand cross court winner to keep the game going, and Scott skipped a shot on the following rally, which put Centellas and Longoria back in the service box.

But again, they couldn’t score, and again it was one winner by each of the American players who denied Centellas and Longoria any points. After Scott’s forehand winner, she and Lawrence called a timeout prior to serving for the match for a fourth time at 14-12.

Centellas hit a forehand winner of her own to deny Lawrence and Scott their fourth match point. But on the fifth one, Scott drove serve to the left side, and Longoria returned it to the ceiling. The ball set up in the back court, and Scott hit a backhand pinch shot for the match winner.

If you missed any of the action from Chesapeake, you can check it out via the LPRT YouTube channel. The next LPRT event will be the US Open in Minneapolis, Minnesota, September 28-October 2.

2022 LPRT at the Beach presented by INVICTA, September 8-11, 2022
Chesapeake, Virginia

Final - Saturday

2) Alexandra Herrera d. 8) Brenda Laime, 15-7, 15-12

Doubles - Final - Saturday

4) Kelani Lawrence & Hollie Scott d. 2) Valeria Centellas & Paola Longoria, 15-1, 15-12

Doubles - Semi-finals - Saturday

4) Kelani Lawrence & Hollie Scott d. 1) Alexandra Herrera & Jessica Parrilla, 5-15, 15-8, 11-6
2) Valeria Centellas & Paola Longoria d. 6) Brenda Laime & Carla Muñoz, 15-11, 8-15, 11-7

Follow the bouncing ball….

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