Brooklyn, NY, WPH Press, 8/24/19- The Lincoln Terrace Handball Association and Big Blue Ballers tournament director Veronica Figueroa were proud to present the 2019 Big Blue Ballers Men’s Pro Singles and LadyBallers Doubles at St. John’s Park in Brooklyn, New York, featuring 84 men’s singles players and 24 women’s doubles teams. “I’m really proud of the Big Blue Ballers event,” stated August’s WPH Ace of the Month Veronica Figueroa. “It just gets bigger and better each year.”
Men’s Pro Singles
The Big Blue Ballers Men’s Pro Singles started in 2003, featuring 15 sensational events between 20003-2018. 2019’s Big Blue Baller’s Men’s Pro Singles would be no different, as the game’s top 1-Wall Big Ball Pros were on hand to compete for one of New York City’s most coveted titles. World 1-Wall Big Ball #1 Timbo Gonzalez entered the event as the heavy favorite, having won the 2019 USHA Small Ball and Big Ball 1-Wall Nationals this summer.
Joining Timbo in the star-studded Big Blue Ballers field were perennial contenders Tywan Cook, Tavo, Josh Garcia, James Aguilera, Sam Sanford, and Kadeem Bush.
As expected, Timbo cruised to the finals, winning his five upper bracket matches with relative ease, including clinical wins against Sam Sanford in the quarterfinals and Tavo Ruiz in the semifinals. Tywan “The Golden Child” entered the 2019 Ballers on a mission, showcasing his immense talents in the bottom bracket. The Golden Child advanced to the final with close wins against James Aguilera in the quarterfinals and Kadeem Bush in the semifinals.
The Golden Child entered the final with a poor singles record against the 1-Wall #1 Gonzalez, but the always-positive Cook played with belief from the start.
Cook raced to a 5-0 lead in his first service inning in the primetime final, needing just 12 swings to score five points. Cook consistently hit an overhand short angle serve to the left, pushing Timbo 10 feet outside of the left sideline and followed up the devastating serve with two-inch high stiff-arm left cross court kills. Cook continued to extend his lead, eventually leading 12-1 and 19-6 by using the same serve and first-strike formula. A late Timbo rally did little, as Cook led wire to wire to clinch the Big Blue Ballers title, 25-13.
“Tywan played very well, the best I’ve ever seen him play,” stated Timbo. “He played so great.”
Timbo def Sanford 21-8
Tavo def Lefty Kevin 21-14
Kadeem def J. Garcia
Tywan def J. Aguilera 21-16
Timbo def Tavo 21-14
Tywan def Kadeem 21-17
Final: Tywan def Timbo 25-13
Watch the final, courtesy of Manuel Castellano on the #TeamR48 Facebook page
The Garate sisters dominated the 24-team LadyBallers Doubles, showcasing the future of Women’s 1-Wall Big Ball. Jessenia and Melanie Garate dominated Tina Aguilera and Melissa Sky in the semifinals and Ruby and Jessica Santiago in the final.
“We played like a team,” stated Jessenia Garate. “Honestly, we had issues with chemistry in previous Ballers tournaments but this year we had a mission to just play as a team, win or lose! We wanted to prove ourselves! We basically redeemed ourselves but we lost in the finals the last time we played in the LadyBallers.
Ruby and Jessica Santiago def Jojo Perra/Beebee Garcia 21-20
Final: Team Garate def Ruby and Jessica Santiago 25-8
For info and to enter the September 26-29 2019 3WB Outdoor World Championships, go HERE
Thank you to the Lincoln Terrace Handball Association and WPH ambassador Veronica Figueroa for running an outstanding event. Log onto wphlive.tv, Like the World Players of Handball on Facebook, or follow the WPH on Twitter @dfwph and @wphlive for all of the handball news from on and off the court! The World Players of Handball is a non-profit foundation aiming to grow the game of handball through innovation and inspiring the next generation of players through junior clinics with Certified WPH Coaches, junior tournaments and the Race 4 Eight and WPH Outdoor tours.
WPH Senior Writer