Pro Pickleball at Pictona: Ben Johns gets 200th singles title, also wins mixed doubles

HOLLY HILL — Ben Johns continued his dominance in singles play with a three-set win Sunday over Tyson McGuffin in the PPA’s Hertz Gold Cup at Pictona’s packed championship stadium court.

It was career singles title No. 200 for Johns, who dropped the second game to McGuffin, 6-11, after an 11-7 win in Game 1, then made short work of McGuffin in the third game with a convincing 11-3 win.

Ben Johns delivers a backhand during his win over Tyson McGuffin in Sunday’s men’s singles final.

While the emotional McGuffin worked the crowd throughout, the stoic Johns maintained his own pace, played his angles, and won the third game easily after putting McGuffin in a big early hole.

Johns added a second gold medal later in the day, partnering with 16-year-old Anna Leigh Waters — a pairing of the PPA’s top-ranked man and woman — to win the mixed doubles.

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Ben Johns

Waters also left town a pair of golds. Partnering with the PPA’s No. 2-ranked woman, Catherine Parenteau, as the top seed in women’s doubles, the pair swept Callie Smith and Lucia Kovalova in Sunday’s final, 11-7, 11-7, 11-4. Waters gave up her shot at the hat-trick by withdrawing from singles just prior to the tournament.

How dominant is the Waters-Parenteau pairing? They’re now undefeated in 50 matches together.

With Ben Johns and brother Collin suffering a second-round upset in men’s doubles, the No. 2 seeded Dylan Frazier and James Johnson took advantage of the opening and were perfect over the weekend. They were 11-0, without a loss through all five matches, culminating in their best-of-5 sweep of 13-seed Christian Alshon and Connor Garnett in the final, 11-8, 11-9, 11-4.

Salome Devidze, the second seed in women’s singles, defeated 5-seed Lacy Schneemann for gold by scores of 11-8, 12-10. The 37-year-old Devidze is a former ITF and WTA professional tennis player.

The Professional Pickleball Association closes out its 2023 schedule Nov. 30-Dec. 3 in San Clemente, California.

This article originally appeared on The Daytona Beach News-Journal: Pickleball: Ben Johns, Anna Leigh Waters each take 2 golds at Pictona

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