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USHA National Masters Singles Championships - San Diego, Calif.

Masters Champs Young (L) & Lasskow (R) congratulate Tom McKnight, coming back to compete after recovering from a brain tumor.

San Diego, Calif.  -  Local Kenny Eng kept the 45-plus title in San Diego and kept the local committee happy. “He (Jeff Wesson) got tired,” Kenny said of the three-game final.

John Libby was too strong for Lennart DeLaTorre in the 35s.

Rex Villaubi was “en fuego” in the final of the 40-plus “I couldn’t miss,” Rex said of his win over Bob Brownfield in the final. “So, I just kept shooting.”

Vern Roberts moved up to the 50s after winning the 45s last year and was the closest thing to a repeat winner. Roberts defeated defending 50-plus champ Danny Carrillo.

Vance McInnis broke his four-wall singles jinx with a win over Dave Morones, who had to default the second game with a middle finger swollen twice its size on his right hand.

Bill Flowers won the 60-plus over Jim Smith.

Norm Young moved to the 65-plus to defeat Texas’ Mike Lundy.

Charlie Wicker moved up to the 70s and defeated Bill Strawn.

Al Crosat also enjoyed his first year of eligibility in the 75s with a win over local Bob King.

“It’s good to be back,” Max Lasskow said after winning the 80-plus title over John Paulette. Lasskow had not played in a national event for three years.

Final Results:

35 Singles:

First Round: John Henning (Tucson) d. Scot Harris (Las Vegas), 9, (18), 8; Lennart Delatorre (Menlo Park, CA) d. Marc Penick (San Diego), 11, 18; John Libby (Huntington Beach) d. Mike Spotorno (Helena, MT), 15, 6; Chris Tico (San Francisco) d. Manny Resendez (Commerce, CA), 16, 10.
Semifinals: DeLaTorre d. Henning, 13, (13), 4-0, inj. def.; Libby d. Tico, 15, 12.
Final: Libby d. DeLaTorre, 7, 11.

Cons.: Todd Tmiboe d. Mike Spotorno, def.

40 Singles:

First Round: Brendan McDevitt (Brisbane, CA) d. Ben Blake (San Diego), 17, 16; Bob Brownfield (Flagstaff) d. Todd Timboe (Great Falls, MT), 4, 5; Rex Villaubi (Los Angeles) d. Jay Miller (Washington, DC), 14, 12; Bernard O’Sullivan (Chicago) d. Isaac Marcado (Los Angeles), 4, 17. Semifinals: Brownfield d. McDevitt, 5, 18; Villaubi d. O’Sullivan, 10, 13. Final: Villaubi d. Brownfield, 9, 1.

45 Singles:

First Round: Octavio Martinez (Riverside, CA) d. John Gilliland (Goleta, CA), 19, 10; Dave Horwitt (San Diego) d. Joe McNeil (Highland, CA), (7), 8, 6; Dan Fredrickson (Fullerton, CA) d. Leo Havener (Lompoc, CA), 18, (16), 5.
Quarterfinals: Jeff Wesson (Milwaukee) d. Martinez, 7, (18), 10; Peter Bidegain (Jamul, CA) d. Tom Pomroy (Butte), 18, 20; Horwitt d. David Ramsey (Long Beach), (15), 12, 4; Ken Eng (San Diego) d. Frederickson, 11, 3.
Semifinals: Wesson d. Bidegain, (14), 9, 9; Eng d. Horwitt, 11, 10.
Final: Eng d. Wesson, (16), 12, 6.

50 Singles:

First Round: Bob Housman (Beverly Hills, CA) d. Steve Birrell (Bozeman, MT), 13, 7; Danny Schmitt (Tucson) d. Brian Dennard (San Diego), 11, 3; Gary Sabbag (Sedona, AZ) d. Tim Mullenix (San Diego), 4, 2; Bob Nesset (Show Low, AZ) forfeit; Matt DeWeese (Lagune Niguel, CA) d. Joel Crowley (Flagstaff), 14, 10; Rick Fernald (Bend, Ore.) d. Pablo Nunez (Los Angeles), 8, 18.
Round of 16: Danny Carrillo (San Bernardino) d. B. Housman, 12, 6; Brian Nelson (San Carlos, CA) d. Art Benitez (Tucson), 14, (18), 0; Schmitt d. Mark Shelgren (Foothill Ranch, CA), (15), 11-20, def.; Res Melton (Santa Barbara) d. Sabbag, 12, 18; Jim Ward (Columbia, SC) d. Nesset, 3, 3; Don Chamberlin (San Diego) d. Deweese, 4, 5; Ernie DeLaLosa (Los Angeles) d. Fernald (13), 7, 10; Vern Roberts (Tucson) d. Eisenbooth, 7, 7.
Quarterfinals: Carrillo d. Nelson, 12, 15; Melton d. Schmitt, 20, 13; Chamberlin d. Ward, 17, (4), 0; Roberts. DeLaLosa, 7, 8.
Semifinals: Carrillo d. Melton, 2, 5; Roberts d. Chamberlin, 8, 10.
Final: Roberts d. Carrillo, 12, 9..

Cons.: Art Benitez d. Rick Wheelock, 4, 7.

55 Singles:

First Round: Dave Rios (Rio Linda) d. Roger Gredvig (San Diego), (15), 11, 4; Ted Dehesa (San Diego) d. Lenny Wicks (Missoula), 6, 5; Len Marinello (Vista, CA) d. Doug Chandler (Auburn, CA), 9, 14; Mike Jordan (Anchorage) d. Rich Wheelock (Alpine, CA), 16, (7), 7; Greg Zucco (Sedona, AZ) d. Burt Repine (San Diego), (12), 15, 10; Jerry Jarrett (Lake Forest, CA) d. Glenn Almquist (San Diego), 9, 9.
Round of 16: Dave Morones (Pico Rivera, CA) d. Rios, 6, 3; Tim Ryan (San Bernardino) d. Bob Snyder (Newport News, VA), 12, 3; Dehesa d. Steve Housman (Encino, CA), 18, 16; Dan Price (Gillette, WY) d. Marinello, 9, 6; Jack Hulick (Rowland Hills, CA) d. Jordan, 10, 8; Zucco d. James Mazuca (San Antonio), (10), 14, 10; Bruce Handelman (Las Vegas) d. Doug Wood (Orem, UT), 14, (7), 5; Vance McInnis (Dunlap, IL) d. Jarrett, 3, 5.
Quarterfinals: Morones d. Ryan, 6, 13; Price d. Dehesa, 19, 20; Hulick d. Zucco, 6, 4; McInnis d. Handelman, 1, 5.
Semifinals: Morones d. Price, 13, 5; McInnis d. Hulick, 8, 3.
Final: McInnis d. Morones, 7, inj. def.

60 Singles:

First Round: Bill Trimble (Elmwood Park, Ill) d. Joel O’Connor (Nashville), (19), 10, 4; Al Edwards (San Diego) d. Ed Means, 11, 9; Al Circosta (Flagstaff) d. Fred Allison (Bakersfield), 15, 10; Jerry Gartside (Newark, OH) d. Bud Nelson (San Diego), 16, 3.
Round of 16: Dennis Moser (Atherton, CA) d. Trimble, 12, 6; Tom Smock (Pasadena) d. Chuck Nicholas (El Cajon), 7, 10; Don Civerolo (Buellton, CA) d. Edwards, 20, 12; Bill Flowers (Portland) d. Circosta, 3, 8; Jim Smith (Watsonville) d. Dick Barry (Merrimack, NH), 14, 7; Larry Waldrop (Los Alamitos, CA) d. Travis Poindexter (Hillsborough, CA), 19, 12; John Nottingham (Woodland Hills) d. Don Hurd (Helena), 15, 17; Mike Hulbert (Colo. Springs) d. Gartside, 9, 6.
Quarterfinals: Moser d. Smock, 5, 6; Flowers d. Civerolo, 11, (19), 3; Smith d. Waldrop, 12, 8; Hulbert d. Nottingham, 11, 20.
Semifinals: Flowers d. Moser, 15, 11; Smith d. Hulbert, (15), 14, 4.
Final: Flowers d. Smith, 4, 4.

Cons.: Don Hurd d. Chuck Nicholas, 12, 14.

65 Singles:

First Round: Reeve Peterson (San Diego) d. Terry Comina (Chicago), (16), 17, 8; Bob Helfrich (San Diego) d. Ruben Badillo (Las Vegas), 11, 9. Round of 16: Peterson d. Tom Kezlan (Kansas City), (17), 9. 10; Jim Story (Saratoga, CA) d. George Andreos (San Diego), 8, 5; Mike Lundy (Kerrville, TX) d. John Melbar (Wrightwood, CA), 4, 6; Curt Creed (Wichita, KS) d. George Tiana (San Diego), 14, 16; Bob Harris (Las Vegas) d. Lou Signer (Berkeley, CA), 4, 8; Mike Driscoll (Dallas) d. Dave Barnett (San Diego), 1, 7; Mike McGrath (San Diego) d. Derrell Jones (Peoria), 8, 10; Norm Young (Lansing, MI) d. Helfrich, 3, 1.
Quarterfinals: Story d. Peterson, 10, 7; Lundy d. Creed, 6, 9; Harris d. Driscoll, 14, (18), 4; Young d. McGrath, 8, 3.
Semifinals: Lundy d. Story, 12, (17), 10; Young d. Harris, 9, 4.
Final: Young d. Lundy, 16, 10.

70 Singles:

First Round: James Alexander (Los Angeles) d. John Walker (Las Vegas), 11, 16; Ted Bergstrom (St. Paul) d. Bob Arnold (Escondido), 2, 1; Duncan MacDonell (Tucson) d. Ed Novak (Las Vegas), 12, 13; Charlie Wicker (Tucson) d. Darrow Baker (Bakersfield), 6, 1; Mike Baggetta (Huntington Beach) d. Tom Pomroy (Butte), 13,-5, inj. def.; Jack Cherrington (Bellevue, WA) d. Gary Thompson (Long Beach), 9, 5.
Quarterfinals: Bill Strawn (Leawood, KS) d. Alexander, 8, 13; MacDonell d. Bergstrom, 3, 6; Wicker d. Baggetta, 18, (15), 7; Cherrrington d. Dave Thoreson (Gold River, CA), 2, 9.
Semifinals: Strawn d. MacDonell, 11, (12), 0; Wicker d. Cherrington, 11, 4.
Final: Wicker d. Strawn, 19, 6.

Cons.: Dave Thoreson d. Milt Joffe, 9, 2.

75 Singles:

First Round: Al Crosat (Menlo Park, CA) d. Ted Hilgenstuhler (Simi Valley, CA), 19, 12; Virl Haas (San Diego) d. Milt Joffe (Palm Desert, CA), 13, 16; Bob King (La Mesa, CA) d. Bill Heaston (Modesto), 13, (20), 3.
Semifinals: Crosat d. Tom McKnight (Los Angeles), 14, 5; King d. Haas, 12, (20), 3.
Final: Crosat d. King, 17, 5.

80 Singles:

First Round: Ward Duarte (El Cajon) d. Pete Giampaoli (Burlingame, CA), 9, 3; Gene Perret (Foster City, CA) d. Bruce Taylor (Valley Center, CA), 19, 16.
Semifinals: Max Lasskow (Delray Beach, FL) d. Duarte, 4, 2; John Paulette (La Mesa, CA) d. Perret, 6, 3.
Final: Lasskow d. Paulette, 4, 2. Cons.: Bruce Taylor.

Saturday Results

The premier masters event of the year winded down to the finals in all events on Saturday. Several semifinals went down to the wire as the competition is always stiff when the masters is held in California.

Fans were especially appreciative of the pro level play in the seniors as John Libby beat Chris Tico and Lennart DeLaTorre outlasted John Henning, who pulled a muscle in the 35 singles. Newcomers are proving successful as Norm Young cruised into the final of the 65 singles, Charlie Wicker in the 70s, Al Crosat in the 75s, and Max Lasskow in the 80s.

Friday Results

Masters players advanced to the semis in all divisions on Friday. The very tough seniors field saw the top four seeds advance and Saturday’s play should be very exciting with John Libby meeting Chris Tico and defending champ John Henning meeting Lennart DeLaTorre.

After yesterday’s upset of Tom Kezlan, Reeve Peterson couldn’t handle the serves of Jim Story in the quarters of the 65 singles.

Two No. 2 seeds got upset in their first round in the 70 and 75 singles events. Dave Thoreson went down at the hands of Washington’s Jack Cherrington in the 70s and local Bob King took out Bill Heaston in the 75s.

Jack Hulick ended Greg Zucco’s string of two 11-10 tiebreaker decisions, defeating the newcomer to national competition, 6, 4.

Saturday’s play will also feature Max Lasskow’s first match in 80-plus play. “Ageless” Max is the winningest Grand Master in handball with close to 50 masters titles to his credit.

Thursday Results

Hosts Burt Repine and Marc Penick got the action off at the San Diego Tennis & Racquet Club on Thursday. It’s the second masters event in three years to be played at the facility. “This is a great place for the event,” Jim Ward of South Carolina said as he took in the first-round action.

The solid-walled courts stayed dry on Thursday, surprisingly, considering the storm that moved through the Southern California area. Competition is being held with full fields in 35 to 80-plus.

Current national champ and top-seeded Tom Kezlan had a tough go of it in the first round of the 65s. Local Reeve Peterson admitted to having trouble off the back wall with his left against Terry Comina early on Thursday to win in three games. But Reeve brought out his big hooks and reverses in the afternoon against Kezlan to edge the national champ, 11-10 in the tiebreaker. “It’s been rough since the nationals,” Kezlan said. “I’ve had one setback after another.” But Peterson was red hot in the tiebreaker after falling behind 8-3. “I was loose and my serves were breaking,” Reeve said after his big win.

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