Four-time US OPEN Racquetball Championships titleholder and five-time consecutive #1 men’s professional International Racquetball Tour (IRT) professional, Sudsy Monchik, will be inducted into the USA Racquetball Hall of Fame on Saturday, May 23, 2015. Monchik first started playing racquetball at age seven in Brooklyn, NY with anything but the hall of fame on his mind. “Jason (Mannino) would beat me really bad to a point of humiliation,” Monchik said. “I was so focused on how I could get better and I really just wanted to beat him.”
That was the start of Sudsy’s career. “I just wanted to beat Jason and it turned into this.” From there he had an unparalleled junior career, winning both USAR National Junior singles and doubles titles in every age division from eight and under through 18 and under. Monchik’s junior doubles titles were all won with his best friend, Mannino. Also as a junior he captured a USAR National High School Championship. As a pro player Monchik amassed more than 40 International Racquetball Tour titles along with six professional doubles titles (with Tim Doyle), and is considered by many to be the greatest player in the history of the sport.
As a retired professional racquetball player, he enjoys spending time with his family. Monchik calls himself a full-time father and coach to his son Derek, 14, who is a left-handed baseball pitcher. His daughter, Lauren, will graduate high school this year. Monchik has also been married to his wife, Lisa, for 16 years.
Even though he no longer plays on the pro racquetball tour, the sport is still a constant in his life. As the sport’s category manager at Dunlop and as coach for Team Ecuador at the upcoming Pan American Games in July. “Staying in the sport is something I will probably do till the day I die,” Monchik said.
Unfortunately because of prior commitments Monchik will not be in attendance at the 2015 United Association of Racquetball (USAR) Hall of Fame and Annual Awards Celebration in Denver, CO. “I am very disappointed that I can’t make it to Colorado this year for the ceremony,” he said. Doug Ganim will accept the honor on Monchik’s behalf and an acceptance video will be played during the ceremony.
This will be Monchik’s second hall of fame induction, having been inducted into the Staten Island, NY Sports Hall of Fame in 2009. “It’s humbling. This wouldn’t have been possible without a lot of people in my life. There are a lot of people that have assisted and been a part of this run. A million thank-yous to everyone.” Monchik would also like to thank USA Racquetball and the IRT for giving him a platform to showcase his craft, as well as his competitors and all the fans that gave him the energy to compete.
Monchik said he would attend the US Open in October where he will gladly use the occasion to express his extreme gratitude.
By Eric Mueller
Eric Mueller started working with the IRT after joining the 2014 UnitedHealthcare US OPEN Racquetball Championships Media Team, where he garnered coverage for top racquetball pros and amateurs in their hometown media while also helping to provide updates to the racquetball community during the tournament. With a degree in journalism from the University of Minnesota, Mueller also brings experience in sports reporting and news writing for newspapers like the Pioneer Press in St. Paul as well as the Southwest Journal and the Downtown Journal in Minneapolis. He has also worked in marketing for the St. Paul Saints professional baseball team and for Gopher Athletics at the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities. Mueller currently works as a Public Relations Intern for the Chicago Bandits professional softball team.