The Deerfield Academy squash program has gained an impressive reputation in the squash realm. Boasting the gorgeous Dewey Squash courts, Deerfield Academy has become notorious for its rigorous squash programs. This year, the Deerfield boys and girls varsity squash teams began their seasons with a bang, playing with grit against various teams in the league.
The boys team consists of captains Chaitanya Shah ’19 and Teddy Durfee ’19; returners Jason Liu ’19 and Max Geraci ’19; and newcomers Charles Braff ’21, Merritt Wurts ’21, Robert Sawyers ’21, and Mason Horton ’19. The boys have had a successful season, beating tough teams such as Tabor Academy, Phillips Exeter Academy, and Choate Rosemary Hall.
This year, while competing in the National Squash Championships, the boys were initially placed in Division II. However, upon petitioning and re-evaluation, the boys were then moved up to Division I. Along with the hectic petitioning and division change, Shah, the number one seed on the team, suffered a concussion weeks before the tournament; he was forced to sit out and rest in order to recover for the tournament.
Despite the injuries and division changes, the boys team emerged victorious, placing 12th in the tournament. With a few more teams left to play, the team currently holds an 10 – 5 record and hopes to finish their season with more wins.
Shah said, “Our season had its ups and downs, but I think everyone works hard and buys in, which definitely helped us at Nationals. I’m confident this will carry over to New Englands, and hopefully we will place within the top five schools.”
Along with the boys team, the varsity girls squash team began their season with the proud title of New England Champions on their shoulders.
After graduating five senior members of the team, the returners Emily Henderson ’19, Sasha Hinckley ’19, and Soo-Min Lee ’19, along with captains Ashley Manning ’19 and Harbour Woodward ’19, welcomed Isabella Rolfe ’21 and Griffin Dewey ’20 to the team. Following the team motto of “be the player in front” the girls trained hard to open with an undefeated season. Unfortunately, the girls lost to Andover with a close score of 3-4, which closed their undefeated season. However, the team continues to boast the best record of winter teams at Deerfield, winning 85% of their matches.
After the Andover match, the girls competed in the National Squash Championship the following weekend. Despite injuries and illnesses, the girls fought hard and placed 8th in the tournament.
Captain Ashley Manning said, “I think that the girls squash team has had a great season. I know we didn’t perform as well as we had hoped at nationals, but I was still beyond proud with how everyone played. Going forward, I am so excited for our last few matches and I know that we will crush it at New Englands!” With this sentiment, the girls varsity squash team hopes to bounce back and reclaim their title as New England Champions.
As their seasons come to an end, both the girls and boys varsity squash teams will play in the New England High School Championships. Both teams are placed in Division A; the boys will compete at Choate Rosemary Hall and the girls at Phillips Exeter Academy. With a few matches left before New Englands, the teams are working towards playing hard and finishing their seasons strong.