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New Era for Quad Squad
Landon Whayne '24 Staff Writer
November 18, 2021

Many Deerfield sports teams have found success in recent years, but few have celebrated as much as the prestigious Quad Squad. Officially known as Junior B Boys Soccer, the team had a three-year winning streak that ended on September 22, 2021. 

The team, after no interscholastic competition in 2020, came back this season different in one fundamental way:  for the 2021-22 fall season, students could not self-select to join Quad Squad and instead had to go through the formal tryout process for placement onto appropriate teams. 

Credit: Alex Rolfe

Boys Junior B Soccer Coach David Payne said that self-selection for Quad Squad was a popular choice in the past. “That ended up being a little unfair in the long run because some of the players that self-selected for Quad Squad probably could have been on JV or thirds,” Coach Payne said.

Indeed, the 2020-21 team had two players who are now on Varsity — Kai Darrell ’24 and Barack Mwesigwa ’24. 

This rule change was a critical one in determining the team’s success and prompted a quick shift in team dynamics. Without the option to self-select, players were placed on one of four teams based on tryouts. This year’s Quad Squad team is made up of mostly underclassmen and led by seniors William Abou-Rjaili ‘22 and Tysean Price ‘22.

When reflecting on past years of Quad Squad, former team members explained that the winning streak was just a small part of what made being part of the group so special. 

“Quad Squad was a brotherhood on which I could always fall back for support,” former player Jack Chorske ’22 said.

Members of the 2020-21 team agreed with this sentiment, even though they had played during a season without interscholastic competition. They said they still had a good time, and practices were filled with competition, fun drills, and a low-stress vibe. 

This year’s Quad Squad team has had a tougher time handling opponents, as expected. Despite starting the season with four winless games—something new to the program—members of the team remained optimistic about their future. 

“I think we need to work on everything: scoring, defense, field positioning,” said Co-Captain R.J. Radonis ’25. “We’ve been noticing huge incremental improvements, and hopefully, we can eat Eaglebrook for breakfast, lunch and dinner during our revenge tour.” Unfortunately, Quad Squad suffered a heartbreaking 3-4 loss against Eaglebrook School on September 29.

Still, members of the team expressed optimism that they could go back to their old ways of winning. As their frequent sit-down meal announcements suggest, they also wished to have more of a student presence at their games. There is one large obstacle in bringing fans to Quad Squad games, though: the very long walk to their field. 

“We played Bement and Eaglebrook to start off the season and I think we underestimated them a bit just because they’re middle schools, but I told the team that they were still Varsity level players who could be on Deerfield’s Varsity next year,” Coach Payne said. “Once that message sank in, we started to play a little more seriously.”  

The team went on to win two games in a row in late October. They finally found their magic again, avenging their loss to Eaglebrook with a 2-1 victory on the 23rd, followed by another 2-1 win against Suffield Academy on the 27th.

“At the start of this year, most of our team had never played soccer before, but as the season progressed we made much bigger improvements than some other teams. I think the captains and especially RJ have made a very positive impact,” said Co-Captain Preyas Sinha ‘24. 

The team has shown a lot of resilience this season and did not back down when they faced adversity. Quad Squad, even as the lowest-level boys soccer team, showed perseverance and ended their losing streak. The team, who did not compete on Choate Day, finished the season with three wins, six losses, and one tie, ending their run with a 5-3 win over Cushing Academy on November 10.