Catherine Parenteau & James Ignatowich have now gone 2/2, securing Championship Sunday appearances in both singles and mixed doubles. They will both have the rare triple crown in mind heading into gender doubles day tomorrow. Callie Smith & Selkirk's Dylan Frazier brought home the bronze medal.
Mixed doubles day of the PPA Tour National Indoor Championships commenced today inside the LifeTime facility, providing shelter from the snowy and icy conditions in Lakeville, Minnesota this week. Upsets were the name of the game today, as the Championship Sunday mixed doubles matchup slated for later this weekend will see a 4th seed take on a 14th seed.
Below is your Mixed Doubles Championship matchup for Championship Sunday on February 26th:
(4) Catherine Parenteau & James Ignatowich vs. (14) Lauren Stratman & Julian Arnold.
Parenteau & Ignatowich:
Def. Fisher & Locklear 11-2, 11-4.
Def. Brascia & Staksrud 11-7, 11-7.
Def. Johnson & Johnson 4-11, 11-7, 11-7.
Def. Bright & Newman 7-11, 11-8, 12-10.
Catherine Parenteau & James Ignatowich competed together for the first time today and may have discovered a recipe for much more mixed doubles success together in the future. The duo sprung into the action today and looked comfortable from the start. They won both of their first two round matches convincingly despite overcoming a good effort from the always tough Mary Brascia & Federico Staksrud. Parenteau & Ignatowich proved their excellent team dynamic and chemistry when they were challenged by the world-class sibling duo of Jorja & JW Johnson, a team that was coming off of a big upset win over the top team in the world in Ben Johns & Anna Leigh Waters last week. The Selkirk duo of Parenteau & Ignatowich were up to the task, however, and handled business in three games.
Finally, Parenteau & Ignatowich pulled off the big upset win in the Semifinals over the No.1 seed in Riley Newman & Anna Bright. Newman & Bright have been an exciting new combination thus far in 2023 and possess a tremendous amount of of power and defensive capability. The match was an absolute thriller and came down to the wire in one of the closest finishes in recent memory. After dropping the first game 7-11, Parenteau & Ignatowich rallied to win two consecutive games, proving clutch in high-pressure situations to bring home game three 12-10.
The first-time duo found their success today with a reliable threat of the third shot drive, unparalleled hand speed, and tremendous defensive court coverage to work their way back into points when necessary. Parenteau & Ignatowich will have triple crowns in mind as they enter gender doubles action tomorrow. They have reached gold medal matches for both singles and mixed doubles after the first two days of the event.
"When I stay positive, things usually go well. When I get into a negative mindset, that's when things don't go as well for me," said Catherine Parenteau. "Playing next to James was positive no matter what."
Stratman & Arnold:
Def. Padegimaite & Hewett 12-10, 11-4.
Def. Irvine & Devilliers 11-1, 11-1.
Def. David & Wilson 7-11, 11-7, 11-8.
Def. Smith & Frazier 11-9, 11-2.
Lauren Stratman & Julian Arnold entered mixed doubles day of the PPA Indoor National Championships as the 14th seed and achieved multiple upsets to surprise everyone and secure their first Championship Sunday as a doubles pairing. The partnership, which exists between the two both on and off the court, has grown and blemished as Stratman & Arnold have found their groove to achieve successful results at the highest levels of pickleball. They both bring constant energy and relentless pressure to their opponents, often overpowering their foes with baseline drives and creative movement up at the kitchen line. Perhaps their most surprising result of the day was easily defeating the experienced pairing of Jessie Irvine & Jay Devilliers 11-1, 11-1. Stratman utilized particular topspin and control in her crosscourt dink rallies throughout the day, and Arnold pounced on any high balls with big put-away volleys.
Stratman & Arnold then overcame the always challenging Vivienne David & Thomas Wilson in a three game thriller. All games in the match were decided by four points or fewer, and Stratman & Arnold completed the upset 11-8 in the third. Finally, they secured an 11-9, 11-2 win over Callie Smith & Dylan Frazier in the Semifinal to clinch their first Championship Sunday appearance as a team. Smith & Frazier then rallied to claim bronze over the top seeded Bright & Newman.
"Lauren has been so supportive, not only today but throughout my entire pickleball career," said Julian Arnold. "I couldn't be in the position I'm in without her."
The PPA Indoor National Championships continues tomorrow with gender doubles. Live stream coverage begins on the PPA TOUR YOUTUBE CHANNEL
at 10:00am Mountain Time.