Santa Barbara, CA, WPH Press, 10/9/16-The Santa Barbara Family YMCA played host to the 10th Annual John Paine Memorial on the second weekend in October, honoring California handball’s beloved John Paine. Race 4 Eight pros Mando Ortiz, Shorty Ruiz, and Erik Torres were on hand to honor John Paine, as well as to sharpen their games for the upcoming Simple Green U.S. Open Race 4 Eight 6 Stop #1. Joining Ortiz, Ruiz, and Torres was John Paine’s son, Miles, Northern California’s junior star Coleman McGrath, and top master’s stars Carlos Chavez and George Garcia, Jr.
The Open Doubles final featured top seeds Mando Ortiz and Shorty Ruiz facing former R48 qualifier Carlos Chavez and former 35+ 4-Wall national singles finalist George Garcia, Jr. Chavez and Garcia upset second-seeded Erik Torres and Al Quitoriano to advance to the final in the bottom bracket, while Team Ruiz/Ortiz defeated Coleman McGrath and Miles Pain in the upper bracket. Team Ruiz/Ortiz had little difficulty in the final against Team Chavez/Garcia, using their age advantage and power to win the title in two games.
Final: Team Ruiz/Ortiz def Team Chavez/Garcia 21-8, 21-16
Big Ball Singles
Doubles teammates Mando Ortiz and Shorty Ruiz were the top seeded players in the 4-Wall Big Ball Singles, with both Ruiz and Ortiz aiming for the Paine Memorial Slam after winning the doubles. Ruiz outlasted 3WallBall 3-Wall Small Ball Pro Doubles champion Erik Torres in the upper bracket Big Ball semifinal, while Ortiz defeated Al Quitoriano for the second time in the event to advance to the final in the bottom bracket. “Erik is a good player and he controls the ball good,” stated Ruiz after advancing to the final. “His timing (with the big ball) is a bit off but if he catches on he will be a great player.”
Ruiz raced to a 20-11 lead in the one game to 25 Big Ball singles final against his doubles partner Mando Ortiz, only to see Ortiz tie the game at 20 with a sensational run of rally-ending kills and passes. Ruiz scored four consecutive points following the nine-point Ortiz rally to serve for the match at 24-20, only to see Ortiz climb to within one at 23-24. Ruiz managed to close out the match and the slam after a side out and a point. “The match was exhausting,” stated the white hot Ruiz. “It was really a great game.”
Finals: Ruiz def Ortiz 25-23
“The Paine Memorial tournament is one of the great tourneys that I love to attend,” stated Race 4 Eight #3 Mando Ortiz. “They always treat you well with great hospitality and great vibes.”
Thank you to tournament director Jason Coronado for a spectacular event.
To follow the results from all of the brackets at the 2016 John Paine Memorial, click here
Follow Mando Ortiz, Shorty Ruiz, and Erik Torres and the rest of your favorite Race 4 Eight and WPH Outdoor stars at the Simple Green U.S. Open, with exclusive live coverage of the indoor and outdoor action live on ESPN3 from October 21st-23rd. For more information on the 2016 Simple Green U.S. Open, go here
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WPH Senior Writer