Salt Lake City, UT, WPH Press, 9/22/18- The home of the WPH Race 4 Eight Aces Player’s Championship hosted the first R48 Pre Qualifier at the Sports Mall in Salt Lake City, with the top players from the City of Saints battling for a travel stipend to the 2018/19 R48 8 event of his choice.
Top-seeded Rob Bell cruised to the final in the upper bracket, eliminating Bryce Brown and Robert Silvester en route to the final. Salt Lake City’s rising star Chris Torres entered the SLC R48 Pre Qualifier seeded second and had little difficulty eliminating Aaron Allan and Victor Stevenson to face Bell in the final.
Torres seized control early in the final, grabbing an 11-7 game one lead before Bell tied the game at 13. Bell maintained his momentum from his second half surge, closing out the game with two kill shots. Torres battled a leg cramp in game two, never threatening Bell, who scored 23 of the final 26 points of the match to join Juarez’s Leo Canales, Sr. and the first two R48 Pre Qualifier champions of the 2018/19 R48 8 season.
“Chris was playing very well (in the first game) and hitting the ball with so much power and I was playing pretty stiff,” stated Bell. “Then I loosened up a bit and was able to serve out the game. The second game I was able to kill a lot better. Chris cramped up at 13-0 and couldn’t get off the floor for a few minutes.”
“The tournament was a blast,” stated SLC R48 Pre Qualifier co-tournament director Ted McManus. “Everybody had a great time. The guys were playing pickup games after playing throughout the entire day in the tournament.”
Thank you to 2018 Salt Lake City R48 Pre Qualifier tournament directors Ted McManus, Ruben Garza, and Rob Bell.
Rob Bell def Robert Silvester 25-10
Chris Torres def Victor Stevenson 25-10
Final: Bell def Torres 15-13, 15-1
Third Place: Stevenson def Silvester 25-11
Fifth Place: Bryce Brown def Jordan Payne 25-15
View the results from the 2018 Salt Lake City R48 Pre Qualifier HERE
R48 Pre Qualifier explained HERE
Atlanta R48 8 Stop #1 October 5-7, 2018 Press Release HERE
2017/18 R48 and WR48 Match Analytics HERE
Handball Terminology + Instruction and R48 Rules HERE
Race 4 Eight Pro Player Bios HERE
Full Race 4 Eight 8 Preview + Schedule HERE
WPH Power Rankings: here
DF’s R48 Fun Facts and Trends: here
Race 4 Eight History of Champions and Finalists: here
WPH Senior Writer