Maneuvering herself in front of her Brooks opponent, first seed Prianca Patel ’19 shot a backhand crosscourt drop shot into the nick, where the wall meets the floor in a squash court, securing a 3-0 win for Andover Girls Squash’s 7-0 sweep against Brooks last Friday. The team’s record now stands at 9-3.
Throughout the match, the team focused on maintaining its technique and mental toughness.
Patel said, “I remember hitting a bunch of really good low hard kill shots on both the forehand and backhand, which was really good because it helped secure the win for my match. I worked really hard last week to ensure my accuracy was on par.”
Captain Zoe Oasis ’17, Skyler Spaulding ’20, and Avery Westerfield ’18 were unable to compete in the match due to injuries and other tournament commitments.
Brita Luke ’18 said, “I think the team played really well considering we were missing two key players, Skyler and Avery. We did a nice job at keeping mental toughness and not getting frustrated when we made a bad shot.”
With the absences of Spaulding and Westerfield, each player moved up on the ladder. Second seed Jennifer Lee ’18, third seed Caroline Yun ’18, fourth seed Susan Yun ’17, and sixth seed Sewon Park ’17 each won their matches in three games.
Despite losing the first game to her opponent, Luke came back to win three straight games and clinch a 3-1 victory for Andover.
Katie Hartzell ’18, who usually plays first seed on Junior Varsity, played in both the seventh and eighth positions, securing two wins with scores of 3-1 and 3-0, respectively.
Hartzell said, “It was at first a bit daunting to hear that I was going to be playing two matches. I was more nervous for the second one because I knew I would probably be tired from the first. I just tried my hardest to push through and luckily it paid off.”
Andover hopes to build upon its momentum as it prepares to compete at High School Nationals this weekend.
Luke said, “We’re going to Nationals this weekend so a big thing we’re trying to keep in mind is keeping up fitness throughout each game and focusing on our concentration throughout the match.”
Patel added, “In light of Nationals, I think that everyone on the team is trying to switch into tournament mode. Personally, I really want to volley a lot more in my match to keep the intensity of the rally up.”
Andover will travel to Connecticut on Friday and is scheduled to face the Baldwin School in its first round match, where they are seeded at the bottom of Division I.
Editor’s Note: Katie Hartzell is a Commentary Editor for The Phillipian.