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US Open Championship Update 2016

October 17th, 2016 Comments off

CONGRATULATIONS to my “Championship Team”

…Paola Longoria for winning her 7th US Open title and Rocky Carson finishing in the Finals

CONGRATULATIONS to my “Junior Championship Team”

…Jordan Cooperrider and Mitchell Turner for winning 1 Silver & 2 Bronze Medals


The 2016 United Healthcare US Open Championships held in Minneapolis, MN was an amazing event.  It was held at the Life Time Fitness Center, inside the Target Center, and there were 800+ participants, 18 countries and $67,000.00 in prize money. The 21st annual event was the biggest and most widely viewed event in racquetball history.

All http://www.irtnetwork.com/ subscribers can see Paola and Rocky’s matches in the archives as well as the finals of the Men’s and Women’s Pro Singles and Doubles finals will be aired on the Tennis Channel…days and times to be announced.

Paola Longoria - 2016 US Open Champion #7. Moments from the event.

Paola Longoria – 2016 US Open Champion #7. Moments from the event.

Paola Longoria defended her title from 2008, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 and is now the 7th time 2016 United Healthcare US Open Champion. She won the event in fashion against her rival Samantha Salas Solis in 3 games. She played amazingly well throughout the week with her aggressive style of play and her consistency. She did not drop one game on the way to being crowned the 2016 US Open Champion.

Paola also won the 2016 United Healthcare US Open Women’s Pro Doubles title with her regular doubles partner, Samantha Salas Solis.  They are the most dominating doubles teams presently playing, as they won numerous World Doubles Championships and Pan American Doubles Championships.

Paola continues to build her portfolio of being the LPRT’s #1 ranked professional player in the world where winning is a way of life for Paola.

The win in Minneapolis is Paola’s 74th tournament win of her professional career. She now holds a winning streak on the LPRT dating back to March of 2015.

Rocky Carson - 2016 US Open Finalist moments w his Coach Fran Davis.

Rocky Carson – 2016 US Open Finalist moments w his Coach Fran Davis.

Rocky Carson made it to the finals of the 2016 United Healthcare US Open, after beating Markie Rojas, #7 seed, in 4 games in the quarterfinals and Daniel De LaRossa, # 3 seed, in a 5 game battle in the semifinals. Rocky fell to his rival, Kane Waselenchuk, in the finals in 3 games. Rocky fought hard and played well.

Jordan Cooperrider and Mitchell Turner, both played the

Jordan Cooperrider - 2016 US Open Junior Sensation.

Jordan Cooperrider – 2016 US Open Junior Sensation.

US Open and brought home 1 Silver & 2 Bronze Medals in their respective amateur divisions. Also, Jordan made her debut in the LPRT pro division.

Jordan was in the LPRT pro main draw and did not have to qualify this year. Jordan showed why she deserved to be there when she knocked off the #11 seed, Adriana Riveros, in 4 games in the round of 32. And then in the round of 16 Jordan was up against the #6 seed, Samantha Salas Solis, and put up an excellent fight pushing Samantha to 4 games before losing. Jordan is getting better and better with each passing tournament.

Mitchell Turner - 2016 US Open 2x Medalist.

Mitchell Turner – 2016 US Open 2x Medalist.

Jordan also played in the Women’s Open Division and played Lucia Gonzales, the #2 seed in the semi-finals, and lost a close battle in a tie-breaker 11-5 to win a Bronze Medal.

Mitchell, at the age of 16, came back this year and moved up from the Men’s B Divisions to play in the Men’s A & Men’s 24 A Divisions. He played his heart out and took home a Bronze medal in the Men’s A and a Silver medal in the Men’s 24 A.

ALL their hard work paid big dividends as they used the Racquetball Sports Triangle that I advocate in my book, Championship Racquetball. ALL year long they never missed a beat working on their racquetball skills, their mental skills and their conditioning/nutritional skills. They knew all three sides of the triangle needed to work together in order for them to reach their championship level game and they did.

Everyone wants to hold a US Open title from the pro division all the way down to the amateur divisions, which is what makes it so competitive and exciting.

I had so many of my students and our campers attend this event. …CONGRATS to all of them:

Tammarrian Rogers Women’s 45+ Gold
Heather Hojat Women’s A Bronze / Women’s 25A Silver Medals
Julienne Arnold Women’s Semi-Finals Women’s 40+ Silver Medal
Georgette Blomquist Women’s 45+ A Gold Medal
Louise Winter Women’s 50+ Silver Medal
Richelle Kulju/
Steve Kowalski
Mixed Doubles Centurion+ A/B Silver Medal
Dean Baer/Richie Baer Men’s 45+ Doubles Gold Medal
Men’s Heroes Singles Open/A Silver Medal
Matt Montana Men’s 40+ & 45+ 2 Bronze Medal
Paul Jubles Men’s Heroes Singles Open/A Gold Medal
Robert Fisette Men’s 25+ A Gold Medal
Jay Ferrar Men’s A Silver Medal / Men’s -24 A Gold Medal
Yash Maini Men’s 24C/25C Gold Medal
Jeff Stark Men’s 40+ & 45+  2-Gold Medals

I had to wear so many hats such as coach, run the HEAD Penn booth, meet for the USAR-IP Certification Program, commentate on the IRT Network, sell our “Championship Products” …book, video and camps and and and.

It is an event you DO NOT want to miss next year so plan for it and you will not be sorry you attended the BEST EVENT of the year.

****My “Junior Championship Racquetball Team” lead by Wayne Antone, Jordan Cooperrider and Mitchell Turner are representing the USA at the Junior World Championships in San Luis Potosi, MX November 2016.
Good Luck and stay focused. Bring home the hardware.

***It will be streamed live on the International Federation Racquetball website.

 

A special CONGRATULATIONS to Doug Ganim, one of my dearest friends and mentors, who was inducted into the USAR Hall of Fame for 2016. I cannot begin to tell you what a true champion he was as he climbed the ranks as a junior, adult and culminating as a USA National Team player. Doug’s work ethic and his generosity to give back to the sport that was so good to him is second to none.

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September Update 2016

October 2nd, 2016 Comments off

We are ALL Heading to the US Open October 5-9, 2016 Minneapolis, MN

“Rocky Carson wins the 3 WB Outdoor Championships in Vegas and makes it to the finals of the 1st IRT pro event in KS”

“Paola Longoria wins her 1st two LPRT pro events in MX & SC and takes 2nd in the Women’s Pro Doubles at the 3 WB Outdoor in Vegas”

“Wayne Antone plays 1st ORA event of the season in Corvallis, OR”

“Jordan Cooperrider makes the semi-finals in Women’s Pro-Doubles in SC”

“Mitchell Turner plays 1st ORA event of the season and wins Men’s A & took 3rd in Men’s Elite in Corvallis, OR”

Rocky Carson & Paola Longoria at the 3 WallBall World Championships...taking a moment at the HEAD/Penn booth.

Rocky Carson & Paola Longoria at the 3 WallBall World Championships…taking a moment at the HEAD/Penn booth.

My “Adult Championship Racquetball Team” led by Rocky Carson and Paola Longoria were busy the first month of the 2016-2017season.

Rocky Carson

“Be Humble or Be Humbled”, by RO Carson

Rocky began his 2016-2017 season, September 9-11, with an IRT pro stop in KS, not missing a beat from last season, and made it to the finals in that event again.

Rocky had a tough route to the finals, but showed his mental toughness by beating all the young guns…Andree Parrilla (#17) in the round of 16’s, Markie Rojas (#7) in the quarter-finals, Jansen Allen (#6) in the semi-finals and then lost to Kane, the eventual winner in the finals.

Two weeks later Rocky switched to the Outdoor Courts and played in the 3WallBall World Championships in Las Vegas, NV, September 23-25, and took home 1st place in the singles…. his 11th Outdoor Championship Title. Rocky and his rival, Alvaro Beltran, had a battle in the finals, but Rocky came out on top.

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Paola Longoria Experience San Luis Potosí, MX.

Paola Longoria

“There are NO SECOND CHANCES, the time is NOW”, by Unknown

Paola the No. 1 ranked racquetball player in the world, kicked off the 2016-2017 Ladies Professional Racquetball Tour (LPRT) in the same dominating fashion as she left it in the spring. At her namesake event in her hometown, San Luis Potosi, MX, September 2-5, Paola won both the singles and doubles divisions at the 2016 Paola Longoria Experience tournament beating Frederique Lambert, No. 3 ranked player in the world in the finals in 3 straight games.

Not many professional athletes have an event named after them while in their prime, but Paola is no ordinary athlete! She is a previous winner of Mexico’s National Sports Award, on Forbes Magazine’s Top 50 Most Influential Women in Mexico list and was her country’s flag bearer at the 2015 Pan American Games. While racquetball is not yet an Olympic Sport, Longoria was in Rio de Janeiro last month at the Games of the XXXI Olympiad as a commentator for one of Mexico’s largest television networks.

 

Paola Longoria Experience San Luis Potosí, MX. img_5561 img_5551
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Paola continued her winning ways one week later and swept both the singles and doubles divisions again at the 2016 Sweet Caroline Open at the Sports

Club Greenville, SC. Paola needed a few extra games than usual as she dropped a game in both the semi-finals and finals of the singles draw. Tired legs could be to blame as the Sweet Caroline Open was played ONLY 5 days after the Paola Longoria Experience.

The win in South Carolina was Paola’s 73rd tournament win of her professional career. She now holds a winning streak Failure will never overtake me if my determination to succeed is strong enough”, by Unknown

Wayne played his first Oregon Racquetball Association (ORA) tournament of the season, September 21-23, in Corvallis, OR and lost in the Men’s Open Singles semi-finals to Jason Samora on the LPRT dating back to March of 2015.

Like Rocky, one week later Paola switched to the Outdoor Courts and played in the 3WallBall World Championships in Las Vegas, NV, September 23-25, and took 2nd in the Women’s Pro Doubles with Michelle Key as her partner and lost a tough one in the finals against Aimee Ruiz/Janelle Tisigner 11-10 in the tie-breaker…. the best women’s match of the tournament.

My “Junior Championship Racquetball Team” is ready for the Fall tournament season as well as the Junior World Championships in San Luis Potosi, MX in November.

 

Wayne Antone training w Rocky Carson getting ready for the season and Jr. Worlds. Great pass shot 👍.

Wayne Antone training w Rocky Carson getting ready for the season and Jr. Worlds. Great pass shot 👍.

Wayne Antone

“Failure will never overtake me if my determination to succeed is strong enough”, by Unknown

Wayne played his first Oregon Racquetball Association (ORA) tournament of the season, September 21-23, in Corvallis, OR and lost in the Men’s Open Singles semi-finals to Jason Samora and training harder than ever.and made it to the finals of the Men’s Open Doubles with John Lindsey, but lost a close one 11-9. Wayne is getting ready for the Junior World Championships in November


Jordan Cooperrider,

Jordan Cooperrider next to Paola Longoria at LPRT pro stop in Greenville, SC.

Jordan Cooperrider next to Paola Longoria at LPRT pro stop in Greenville, SC.

“I will beat them.

I will train harder.

I will eat cleaner.

I know their weaknesses.

I know their strengths.

I’ve lost to them before,

but not this time.

They are going down.

I have the advantage

because i know them well.

They are the old me.”

-Bonnie Pfiester

In Jordan’s 2nd LPRT pro stop of the season in Greenville, SC she made some noise again after taking 1st place with Alexandra Herrera in the WO/Pro Doubles in Atlanta, GA in August. In Greenville, SC Jordan and her partner, Gabby from Guatemala, beat Rhonda Rajsich/Sheryl Lotts, the #2 seed in Women’s Pro Doubles to make it to the semi-finals and and have a chance to play Paola Longoria/Adriana Riveros. The youngsters, Jordan and Gabby, put up a good fight, but Paola’s and Adriana’s experience was too much for them.

In the Women’s Pro Singles Jordan qualified into the main draw before falling to Alexandra Herrera, #5 ranked LPRT pro player, in the round of 16’s. It was Jordan’s 2nd time qualifying this season. It’s ONLY a matter of time before Jordan breaks through as she is working very hard on her game with me physically and mentally.

Jordan is getting ready for another LPRT pro stop, the US Open, October 5-9, before heading to the Junior World Championships in November.

Mitchell Turner sparring w Jerry Evarts, local lefty, as they train w me in Seattle

Mitchell Turner sparring w Jerry Evarts, local lefty, as they train w me in Seattle

Mitchell Turner

“A lot of people run a race to see who is the fastest. I run to see who has the most guts, who can punish himself into an exhausting pace, and then at the end, push himself even more.” by Steve Prefontaine

Mitchell played his first Oregon Racquetball Association (ORA) tournament of the season, September 21-23, in Corvallis, OR and won the Men’s A and took 3rd place in the Men’s Elite. This was great preparation for the US Open he is going to attend October 5-9 and the Junior World Championships in November.

Also, Mitchell came up to train with me this weekend in Seattle, October 1st, and we tweaked a few things and sharpened his game up strategically and mentally. He is training harder then I have ever seen him and his hard work is PAYING OFF.

Enjoy your journey to your “championship game,” like my “championship team”.

**All IRT Tier 1 and Grand Slam events are streamed live on the IRT Network.

***All LPRT Tier 1 and Grand Slams are streamed on Livestream.com.

 

 

 

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