A Season Finale Full of Celebrations
Jun 18, 2023
The LPRT 2022-2023 season ending event “Battle at the Beach” presented by Invicta
Security Services was full of amazing athleticism, ace serves, and emotions. Montse Mejia
(MEX) not only won the event, but she also finished the season as the new, #1 ranked
player on the LPRT.
In a tearful, heartfelt, post-final interview, Mejia reflected on her #1 accomplishment being a
childhood dream. She said, “I have no words. I am too happy.”
Mejia joins an elite crowd of 13 other women who earned the season-end #1 title. The most
recent of those being Paola Longoria (MEX). Although this was a difficult loss for Longoria,
her recording-setting accomplishments will be celebrated for years to come. Longoria has
earned a record 13 season ending #1 titles (to date), 11 of those titles consecutively.
A big thank you to tournament director and sponsor, Malia Bailey, for bringing the LPRT
back to Virginia. Thank you to presenting sponsor Invicta Security Services for your
repeated support. Thank you to sponsors Joreth Consulting, City Wide Truck and Auto
Sales, LPL Financial, JKB Solutions, Tidewater Landworks, Spencart Properties, Gene Fry, Malcolm Dailey-Costco, Greg Giordano, and Sunshine Arterburn.
Here is the full event recap thanks to Todd Boss of ProRacquetballStats.com:
Let’s review the notable matches in the Singles draw.
In the 16s:
- Jessica Parrilla got a nice win over Natalia Mendez (ARG) in the 8/9 game. Mendez sinks
to her lowest ranking since her debut season in 2016-17.
- In one of the matches of the round, #12 Maria Jose Vargas comes back from a game
down to topple Brenda Laime (BOL), who had made the finals of the two previous pro
events. From finals to one-and done, that's what the depth on tour is starting to look like.
- #13 Kelani Lawrence (USA) dominated #4 Erika Manilla (USA) 3,7 on her home courts to
move on. Manilla must be wondering what happened; the cement courts in Chesapeake
should have worked to her favor, even if she was playing someone who grew up on those
- #14 Valeria Centellas (ARG) beat #3 Alexandra Herrera (MEX) for the second time in
three months, matching her career best win.
- #6 Angelica Barrios (BOL) continues to show why she's a player nobody wants to face,
taking out the previous event's champion Ana Gabriela Martínez (GUA) in the 16s in a tie-
- #7 Carla Munoz (CHI) ground out a solid win over #10 Samantha Salas Solis (MEX) 11-9
in the breaker to put a cap on her best ever pro season.
In the Quarters
- #1 @Paola Longoria (MEX), who knowingly went into this event knowing only a better
showing than Mejia would retain her crown, dominated #8 Parrilla to move on.
- #12 Vargas made fast work of home-town favorite Kelani 7,1 to set up a crucial semi-final
showdown with Paola.
- #6 Barrios shut down any chance of a deep run from Centellas, defeating her fellow
Bolivian native 13,8 to move into the semis.
- #2 Montse Mejia (MEX), who is also perfectly aware of the stakes in Virginia, held serve
12,12 against a very solid Munoz to move into the semis and keep the possibility of a
winner-take-all final alive.
In the Semis, a heartbreak and a new champion is crowned:
- Vargas took out Longoria for the 2nd time this season in a close 14,12 match. Heartbreak
for Longoria, as the loss costs her the title.
- Mejia dominated games one and three, losing focus in game two, and advances over
Mejia played her semifinal before Longoria, so upon hearing of Paola's loss, Mejia knew
she had guaranteed herself the year end title. The LPRT has a new #1 player.
In the Finals, Mejia handled Vargas in game one, capitulated in game two, then dominated
her in game three. Final score: 7,(3),3
Mejia & Herrera finished the season the same place they started it, with a doubles title.
They saved match point against in the final against team Argentina Vargas & Mendez, then
blew them away in the breaker to give Mejia a double for the weekend.