Green/USHA Pro Qualifier at Los Caballeros
In conjunction with the SCHA Regionals at Los Caballeros
"I went from a first-round loss to winning the tournament," Dane Szatkowski
said after rallying to win in five games over first-time qualifier Eddie Chapa
6, (1), (6), 4, 5. "I was ready to throw it in against (Miles) Paine," Szatkowski
said. "I was down 8-4 after he (Paine) had won two," Dane added.
Making comebacks has become second nature to Szatkowski. In the final, however,
he won a rare first game over Chapa, surprising himself. It was a match of
spurts ? both players agreed. "I hit some shots that I thought I missed and
they rolled out," Szatkowski said. "We were hitting kills and then just skipping
them in," Chapa said "and it just kept going back and forth."
After Szatkowski took an 8-3 lead in the fifth, the sense of urgency and determination
returned to Chapa's face. Scoring two quick kills, Chapa seemed to be on a
roll. But it fizzled when he double-faulted and Szatkowski closed out the match,
With 28 quality players in the field, the first-round experience of Szatkowski
proved the depth of this field as the pro season hit the midway point. With
Naty Alvarado Jr. joining Allan Garner, Szatkowski, and Chapa, the top 12 will
be very interested in how the blind draw shakes out for Sacramento, April 2-4.
First Round: Mark O'Leary (Palatine, IL) d. Aaron Recine (Los
Angeles), (7), (0), 7, 3, 3; Ricardo Diaz (San Jose) d. Juan Flores
(Santa Ana), 2, 3, 10; Eddie Silveyra (Commerce) d. Adolfo Monreal
(Phoenix), 10, 8, (10), 10; Bill Mehilos (Chicago) d. Boak Flores
(Long Beach), 9, 3, 1; Edie Chapa (Rosemead, CA) d. Pat Flanigan
(Springfield, MO), (10), 2, 1, 3; Marc Penick (San Diego) d. Greg
Ramirez (Canyon Country, CA), (7), (10), 1, 7, 0; Miles Paine (Santa
Barbara) d. Greg Tomasyan (Altadena, CA), 6, 9, 4; Michael Gregan
(Wicklow, Ire.) d. Manny Resendez (Commerce), 3, 2, 1; Andy Schad
(Tucson) d. Paul Rodelo (Whittier, CA), 1, 1,9; Allie Abdulla (Rancho
Cordova, CA) d. Armando Ortiz (Norwalk), 5, 7, 3; John Libby (Huntington
Beach) d. Mike New (Germantown, TN), 3, 6, 1; Owen McKenna (Belfast,
Ire) d. Carlos Chavez (Buena Park, CA), (8), 1, 9, 3.
Round of 16: Naty Alvarado Jr. (Hesperia) d. O'Leary, 1, 2,
2; Diaz d. Silveyra, 9, (10), 8, (5), 10; Chapa d. Mehilos, 8, 8,
1; Sean Lenning (Shoreline, WA) d. Penick, 2, 8, 7; Dane Szatkowski
(Addison, IL) d. Paine, (6), 5, (2), 9, 4; Gregan d. Schad, 2, (9),
10, 9; Abdulla d. Libby, 6, 9, 10; Allan Garner (Austin) d. McKenna,
(3), 6, (10), 1, 2.
Qualifying Round: Alvarado d. Diaz, 7, 4, 0; Chapa d. Lenning,
9, 6, 2; Szatkowski d. Gregan, 5, 3, (7), 4; Garner d. Abdulla, (9),
7, 10 (2), 0.
Semifinals: Chapa d. Alvarado, default; Szatkowski d. Garner,
6, 2, 3.
Final: Szatkowski d. Chapa, 6, (1), (6), 4, 5.
Southern California Regional Results:
Open Singles: Chris Watkins d. Pat Flanagan.
A Doubles: Michael Gregan/Owen McKenna d. Ruben Villanueva/Greg
B Singles: Hugo Bermuen
45+ Singles: John Guth d. Joe McNiel.
45+ Doubles: Greg Sizemore/Mark Shelgren d. Danny Carrillo/Tim
50+ Singles: Bob Housman d. Ernie DeLaLoza.
50+ Doubles: Rod Gaspar/Jim Barnett d. Jack Hulick/Mike Kogan.
55+ Singles: Nacho Larios d. Ira Goldberg.
65+ Singles: Mike Baggetta (Round Robin)
125+ Doubles: Ernie Contreras/Bill Doles.
Special thanks to the tournament volunteers:
and the site: LOS CABALLEROS
And our sponsor: SIMPLE GREEN
"I felt good," Ricardo Diaz said after losing to Naty Alvarado in the qualifying
round. "He's (Naty) just too good for me...right now," the fast-improving 19-year-old
Next to qualify was Eddie Chapa, who upset Sean Lenning in three games. Chapa
kept Lenning off balance with a blistering natural to the right. "All my serves
were working today," Chapa said. "I just tried to keep him guessing with the
serve to the left. Even my second serve, which was just a z-serve was working.
He (Lenning) took one on the fly and put me out. I thought he was going to
do it again but he never did."
Dane Szatkowski earned his berth with a win over Gregan. "My arm is killing
me," Gregan said of his fatigue.
Allarn Garner stormed back after Abdulla took the first game to win in five
games. "I didn't have it today," Abdulla said. "Next time I'll get in," he
said. "It would have been nice to play in Sacramento but it will have to wait."
Players convened at the site of the 1998 and 2001 national championships for
the USHA/Simple Green Pro Qualifier. Host Gary Cruz got the action off on Friday
with 110 entries competing in both fields.
Saturday morning will see the qualifying round take place for the four spots
on the final two stops of the season (Sacramento and Des Moines). Naty Alvarado
Jr., who had made a comeback with the PHA Ultimate Showdown event in February,
is trying to break back into the Simple Green/USHA tour as well. Naty defeated
Mark O'Leary and will face youngster Ricardo Diaz to qualify. Diaz survived
a fifth game 11-10 decision over Eddie Silveyra. "I had three chances to score
11 and couldn't do it," Silveyra lamented.
There were other great matchups to get to the qualifying round. Eddie Chapa
beat Bill Mehilos in three and Sean Lenning pounded Marc Penick in three. Otherwise
everything went to the wire. Allie Abdulla beat recent Seniors champ John Libby,
6, 9, 10. Dane Szatkowski needed five games to beat Miles Paine and Ireland's
Gregan edged Andy Schad in four.
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