Last on the court, with Andover Girls Squash and Noble and Greenough tied 3-3, newcomer Zoe Oasis ’17 refused to surrender Andover’s season opener. Neck-and-neck after four tight games, Oasis pulled ahead 11-6 in a fast-paced final game to dominate her opponent and cap off a 4-3 victory for the team on Wednesday.
“I was really proud of how the team performed today, especially because we were missing a team member. Nobles is one of our toughest opponents and everyone gave it their all. I was so happy to see [Oasis] win the deciding match. A crowd was watching her and it got dead silent between points; it is really stressful to stand on court and know that people are counting on you to perform… She focused and ignored the pressure to steal the win,” said Claire Kister ’16.
Captain Madeleine Mayhew ’15 set the tone for the rest of the team with a 3-1 victory against her opponent at the second seed. Mayhew started strong with a 12-10 victory and quickly recovered from a close second game loss to sweep the final two games 11-7 and 14-12.
Andover struggled at the first, third and fourth seeds, however, with three 3-0 losses. Missing veteran Emma Crowe ’15 because of a concussion and lagging 1-3 on the scoreboard, the pressure fell on Oasis, Jennifer Lee ’18 and Avery Westerfield ’18 at the fifth, sixth and seventh seed, respectively, to put Andover back on top.
Filling in for Crowe, Lee stepped up to the challenge, playing with the poise of a seasoned player. Bouncing back from a loss in the first game, she swept the next three games 11-2, 11-4 and 11-5.
“It was so much fun playing Nobles, as it was our first match of 2015, and we had a lot of students at the courts rooting for us. Coming back from 1-0 down to win the match was very exciting,” said Lee.
Westerfield followed suit and dominated the court in a quick 3-0 victory at 11-3, 11-2 and 11-3.
Mayhew said, “Nobles is a tough competitor, and, going into the match, my expectations for winning not only my match, but also winning as a team, were very low. I think it was because our expectations were so low that we were able to triumph. We had nothing to lose.”
“I was really proud of our entire team, whether they won or lost. Everyone played with honesty, a competitive spirit and enthusiasm. We owned our home turf and had fun doing it,” she continued.
Oasis said, “It was a great win for the team. We all played well and supported each other. It was a fantastic way to start the season after the long break.”
This Saturday, the team will make its way to Choate in hopes of capitalizing on their momentum.