Last Friday, Andover Boys Squash dominated over Groton 7-0, bringing the team’s record to 5-2. According to team member Arthur Nguyen ’22, the match allowed for Andover to gain confidence due to the simplicity of each match.
Nguyen said, “To be honest no one really had a tough match. We all won our matches pretty easily. It was a match that gave us more confidence to be honest. We just played, played our game, and won. It wasn’t that difficult.”
According to Nguyen, even though the match was an easy win, it was still a learning experience. It also allowed for the team to focus their attention on playing better without being focused solely on winning and the pressure to win, according to Euan Luke ’21.
“We think of it as a time that we can focus on things, focus on our game without it being so important. It’s a chance to play without being so stressed about winning and making sure that your match counts for the overall win,” he said.
The older players have really helped strengthen the team’s mindset and mentality when entering any match, according to Nguyen.
“It’s good, it’s really competitive. The team’s a lot of Upper and Senior guys, and they really bring mentality and they’ve got more experience. They’ve really helped out with the mentality and the match play of the team,” Nguyen said.
The team continues to train hard especially in anticipation of upcoming competition against challenging teams. This week, the team will play additional challenge matches to ensure the strength of the lineup.
One of the teams squash will face again is Belmont Hill, who claimed a close 3-4 victory against Andover earlier in the season.
“We’re playing St. Paul’s next week, that’s going to be a good match. It’s always tough against Belmont Hill, so that will definitely be a good match,” Nguyen said. “We’ve spent a week preparing for mentality off the court, and we just practiced, practiced, and practiced our shots.”
Luke said, “The Deerfield game; that’s going to be a really good game, [as will the games against] Belmont Hill [and] Choate. To prepare we’re doing extra challenge matches this week, we’re doing like two. Lots of fitness, like today we did the beep test. We’re just doing overall more everything, just to prepare ourselves for the more important matches.”
According to Nguyen, to further ensure success over competition and increase athletic ability, Head Coach John Roberts has had the team ghosting, where players mark out movements without racquets, and practicing a multitude of shots.
“[Coach Roberts] prefers it just to practice on all part of the court. Our coach really focuses on the length of the rallies, working your opponent, and just moving them around,” Nguyen said. “We ghost. It’s good, it’s good for fitness and movement as well.”
The team will be facing St. Paul’s on Wednesday and Choate, Belmont Hill, and Westminster in a tripleheader the following Saturday.