Addison Davenport ’15 sprinted to the front right corner in pursuit of a drop shot from his opponent. With a flick of his wrist as he dove through the air, Davenport kept the ball in play and later won the point with a shot into the nick for a winner.
Andover Boys Squash has suffered three shutout losses against Taft, Choate and Deerfield after winning its first match of the season. Although there were close matches up and down the ladder, they all fell in favor of Andover’s opponents.
Andover was scheduled to play a match against Exeter as well, but Exeter was unable to make it to the match due to unforeseen circumstances.
Taft, which boasts a 5-1 team record, has only dropped eight individual matches over six matches. As a consistent threat to capture the championship in the Founder’s League, Taft displayed its depth throughout the lineup by sweeping Andover with relative ease.
Andover players were not too upset with the team’s performance against Taft. “Against Taft, we did our best to play good, smart squash,” said Jack Quamme ’16, who played as the fifth seed.
Head Coach Tom Hodgson wrote in an email to The Phillipian, “Taft was too strong, more experienced and skilled. We knew that going in. We had moments when we made them work for their points but they won all the games, and only a third of them were close.”
Andover, tired from a defeat against Taft, put up a disappointing showing against Choate. “We were playing a fresh Choate squad after we had played a full match, and they were definitely a beatable team,” continued Quamme.
Captain Michael Huang ’15 took an early two-set lead in his match, but his opponent managed to battle back to steal the match 3-2. Choate proceeded to sweep every match between the second and fifth seeds to seal the match.
On Wednesday, the team traveled to Deerfield Academy and lost 7-0. Andover was only able to win four sets total. Davenport had the closest match of the day at the seventh spot, but his comeback ultimately fell short.
Despite the losses, Hodgson is optimistic about the team’s development thus far in the season and expects better performances in the future.
“We are a good group with a nice mixture of maturity and youthful inexperience. Practices are lively and productive, and as we gain in fitness and match experience, we should see significant improvement during the season,” Hodgson wrote in an email to The Phillipian.
With a 1-3-0 record, Andover has started slowly but has plenty of room to improve, and at the end of the season, the team will look back at these losses as learning experiences.
Davenport said, “Five of the seven starting Varsity players didn’t play a full season for Andover last year. The team as a whole is inexperienced and is benefiting enormously from match play opportunities.”
Andover will look to rebound from tough losses when it hosts Groton on Friday and Middlesex on Saturday.