Sean Lenning and Mando Ortiz met in the final for the third time in the last five Race 4 Eight events, with Lenning winning the previous two finals in Salt Lake City (2015) and Tucson (2015). Lenning cruised to the final with ease, winning all six games he played and never allowing any of his three opponents to score more than 10 points in any game. Ortiz entered Houston’s final in search of his first R48 title after losing in his first three trips to the finals. Ortiz defeated Paul Brady in Saturday’s semifinal in what instantly became recognized as the best match in the history of the R48 tour.
Mando Ortiz picked up where he left off in his semifinal win in the final, crushing Lenning 15-0 in just nine minutes to take a one-game lead. “Sean was just asleep in the first game and not making his serves or his shots,” Ortiz would later say. Lenning came to life in game two, finding his rhythm and his explosiveness to even the match at one game apiece.
The tiebreaker produced several dramatic momentum changes between two of the greatest offensive players in the history of the sport. Lenning raced to a 6-1 lead before Mando scored 11 of the next 12 points to seize control of the third frame. Ortiz would eventually lead 13-9, just two point from his first R48 title. Several long exchanges and multiple dives, floor timeouts, glove changes, and incredible shot making by Sean Lenning saw the score tied at 13, with Lenning two points from his sixth R48 title. A furious rally at 13-all revealed both player’s desperation to win the title, as each lunged and dove for multiple balls. Ortiz earned the side out and scored consecutive points to win his first R48 title.
“This is everything I’ve ever dreamed of,” revealed at emotional Ortiz on ESPN. “I know of all of the great mentors and champions that have come before me paved the way and I’m just so happy to be part of the club (of champions). Both my grandparents passed away this year and this is for them.”
Emmett Peixoto rebounded from his quarterfinal loss to Mando Ortiz to defeat Killian Carroll for the first time in the first round of the 5th place playoffs and clinched fifth by defeating Jonathan Iglesias. Luis Cordova dominated the 9th place playoffs, cruising past Daniel Cordova, David Fink, and Allan Garner. Tyler Stevens earned a R48 ranking for the first time by winning the 17th place playoffs, defeating Chicago’s Carlos Lemus in the final.
R48 Houston Finishes:
9th: L. Cordova
10th: Al. Garner
13th: Munson/D. Cordova/Bernhard/Hamel
Marcos Chavez and Tyler Hamel met for the third straight year in the SR48 Houston, with the pair splitting their previous two Houston encounters. Chavez defeated Hamel in the 2014 SR48 Houston final and Hamel defeating Chavez in the 2015 SR48 Houston semifinal. Chavez was in search of his sixth SR48 title, while Hamel was aiming fir his first.
Chavez quickly took control of the final, building a 15-5 halftime lead with a remarkable display of all-around handball. The Chavez express continued to roll in the second half, as Chavez applied pressure to cruise to his sixth SR48 title and retain his #1 SR48 ranking.
SR48 Houston Finishes:
To watch replays of the R48 and SR48 action from Houston, go to the Watch ESPN App (here).See the draws and results HERE.
FOUNTAIN VALLEY, Calif. -- The Simple Green 2015 US Open of Handball and 25th Naty Alvarado Classic featured the game's best in a festival of handball in one=wall, three-wall and four-wall on Sunday. In a first, players were allowed to enter more than one pro event. The brackets were filled with star power but slams were hard to come by, even for Paul Brady. The only Open slam came in the Women's one-wall with Sandy Ng taking two titles on Sunday.
After Brady (taking one off the back wall in the final), rallied to defeat Luis Moreno in the singles final, he ran into a buzz saw in Armando Ortiz in the doubles. Brady and Emmett Peixoto looked unbeatable en route to the final but that was before Ortiz caught fire and Vic Perez' stellar right-side play proved too much for the singles stars.
Samzon Hernandez (setting to blast one outdoors), overcame fatigue to take the three-wall singles over Victor Duran.
Timbo Gonzalez beat Tywan Cook for the one-wall singles but also came up just short in the three-wall doubles with Braulio Ruiz in the final against Gilbert Rosales and Manuel Arreola.
The Festival featured great play in all versions and all age groups.
MINNEAPOLIS -- Peter Funchion and Ciana NiChurraoin will be taking the men's and women's titles back to Ireland (on the shoulders of their teammates). Ni Churraoin slammed in the women's with Niamh Dunne . Funchion turned back Minnesota favorite Tyler Stoffel in a great final to a great tournament. In one of the most competitive Collegiates ever, University of Limerick won its first Men's Title and the University of Texas grabbed the Women's. Lake Forest held the Overall Championships with second-place finishes in both men's and women's.
The photo below features the Univ. of West Florida Argonauts striking a pose--very Argonaut-like! See the BRACKET ROUND draws at the bottom for most up to date scores and match times. #NATLCOLLEGIATEHANDBALL16.
FIRST ROUND (Brackets and times available)
- M 1-16
- M 17-32
- M 33-48
- M 49-64
- M 65-80
- M 81-96
- M 97-112
- M 113-128
- M 129-144
- M 145-160
- M 129-160 (Preliminary Round)
SECOND ROUND (Brackets and times available)
- M Open/A1
- M A1/A2
- M A2/A3
- M A3/B1
- M B1/B2
- M B2/B3
- M B3/C1
- M C1/C2
- M C2/C3
- M C2/C3
- M C2/C3 (Extra Round)
FIRST ROUND (Brackets and times available)
SECOND ROUND (Brackets and times available)
University of Minnesota
- February 22-Draws posted
- February 24 12 noon-registration opens
- February 24 1:30 pm-coaches meeting
- February 24 3:00 pm-play begins
- February 25 8:00 am-play continues
- February 26 8:00 am-play continues
- February 27 9:00 am-semifinals
- February 27 3:30 pm-coaches meeting
- February 27 7:00 pm-banquet
- February 28 9:00 am-finals
- Days Inn. Call (612-623-3999) by Jan. 24 of $99/night. Mention US Handball. Parking and continental breakfast is included. U.S. Handball
- Commons Call (612-379-8888) or reserve online by Feb. 3 to for $129/night,
- Light rail to and from airport-The train runs from both airport terminals. Take the Blue Line north (towards Target Field) to Downtown East station. Transfer to the Green Line east (towards St Paul). Exit at Eastbank station for the Commons and the UM Recreation Center. Exit at Stadium Village for Days Inn.
- Walking from Commons to Rec Center Right on Harvard, 2 minutes walk
- Walking from Days Inn to Rec Center-Southeast on Washington, to Harvard, turn right. 10 minutes walk.
By Dan Flickstein
On November 22, 2015 Sheila Maroshick, brilliant one-wall singles star from 1949-1964, was officially inducted into the USHA Hall of Fame in Brooklyn at Chadwick’s Restaurant at 89thStreet and Third Avenue, not far from where she lives with her sister, Eileen. Eileen was the celebration’s gracious hostess.
Sheila kicked off the festivities with a beautiful prayer she had written many years ago for an assembly program she directed at the junior high school where she taught. That long ago special program welcomed guest speaker Eleanor Roosevelt, who praised Sheila for her elegant words. After the prayer Sheila spoke briefly of her handball glory days and of her gratitude for being accepted to the National Hall of Fame.
During the evening attention was called to Sheila’s latest book, The Inquisitive Children, from which all proceeds will be donated to the Make a Wish Foundation.
City Councilman Vincent Gentile presented Sheila with on official citation for her Hall of Fame career, indicating her contribution to the City of New York as an athlete.
In honor of John C. Sabo Sr., a longtime supporter of handball and a state open champion in New Jersey, a college scholarship for handball players was established. The Sabo Scholarship was the very first specifically for handball and will go a long way toward continuing the education of young handball players around the country.
Eligibility: For any full-time college student who participates in USHA events, with special consideration for players from the Northeast Region. Applications will be examined, and the intent is to reward students with good academic records who demonstrate financial need.
How to Apply: Applications may be submitted by individuals, coaches or both. Please send an essay outlining current academic status and course work, handball experience, unofficial transcripts, and how the money would help further the applicant’s education.
Send to: Sabo Scholarship c/o USHA, 2333 N. Tucson Blvd. Tucson, AZ 85716
Deadline: December 31st of each year.
The scholarship committee will select winners and announce them at the USHA National Collegiate Championships.
Here are all previous winners:
2018: Julie Huestis, Chandler Straw
2017: Ricardo Palma, Juan Leo Canales
2016: Sandy Ng, Nathaniel Frank
2015: Angel Marquez, Anthony Collado
2014: Shannon Strand, Megan Heibel
2013: Matthew Chu, Robert Lee
2012: Eric Lee, Steven Zhu, Jurell Bastidas
2011: Lucas Bossung, Eric Brandman
2010: Jack Bossung, Kevin Cui, Derek Alcantar
2009: Andrew Lui, Leo Cullen, Michael Wu
2008: Ken Maldonado, Lindsey Costley
2007: Andrea Parpas, Victor LoPierre, Eric Hillgren
2006: Dutch Lowy, Bill O’Donnell, Jonathan Iglesias
2005: Zach Arem, Mike Mehilos
2004: Edie Kowalkowski, Molly Tilleson
2003: Adam Bernhard, Ivan Ruiz
2002: Roger Hill, Bill Mehilos, Alexis Cloutier
2001: Megan Mehilos, AJ Arem, Bryce Grady
2000: Bill Mehilos, Calvin Lee
1999: Jeffrey Ha, Rob Sandler
1998: Amber Rounseville, Mandy Rounseville,Tom Widner
1997: Priscilla Kojin-Shumate, James Bardwell
WEST ALLIS, Wisc. -- "Luis Moreno OWNS the Milwaukee Classic," declared tournament director Charlie Keller. Nobody could get the best of Moreno at the Wisconsin Athletic Club as he slammed for the second year in a row, defeating Sean Lenning (16), 4, 6, in singles and winning the doubles with Emmett Peixoto, 12, 17, over Lenning and Nik Nahorniak.
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