Girls Squash Clinches Win Over Exeter, Falls Short Against St. Paul’s

Second seed and Captain Skyler Spaulding ’20 hit a tight forehand rail into the back corner, forcing her opponent to miss the ball and securing the win over her opponent. Spaulding’s victory helped propel Andover Girls Squash to a 4-3 win over rival Phillips Exeter Academy on Saturday. The team also played St. Paul’s on Wednesday, and fell 3-4. Andover’s record now stands at 3-5.

According to first seed Mariam Elkheshen ’21 and ninth seed Lillie Cooper ’21, Andover brought high amounts of both energy and focus to the court on Saturday.

Elskeshen said, “We all cheered for each other and everybody was very focused because we always want to beat Exeter.”

Cooper said, “Since Exeter is our rival, there was very high energy and intensity on the court, and as a team it was so exciting to watch.”

According to third seed Charlotte Toogood ’20, Andover’s win against Exeter was a result of both the team’s determined mentality and the absence of Exeter’s top seed.

Toogood said, “This weekend at Exeter, our team did an excellent job of pushing ourselves hard to pull off a 4-3 win against Exeter. Exeter’s number one player was absent, which definitely gave us an extra boost to help us secure our win… Overall, I am so proud of our team for putting in the sheer determination and energy that it took to beat Exeter.”

According to fourth seed Saffron Agrawal ’21, Toogood stood out as a persistent and composed competitor on Saturday.

“Charlotte’s match stood out to me because she had some goals at the beginning — like switching up pace and hitting more drops — and I think she did a great job sticking to those goals. She had been working on volleydrops this whole week in practice, and she was able to really utilize this throughout her match to stay offensive. She kept a confident mindset the whole time, and stayed collected regardless of the game scores,” Agrawal wrote in an email to The Phillipian.

St. Paul’s proved itself a much stronger opponent, however, and though Andover ultimately fell, the team was proud of the way it conducted itself against such tough competition, according to Spaulding and Cooper.

Spaulding said, “St. Paul’s is known for being a good team and we definitely showed them we could put up a good fight.”

Cooper wrote in an email to The Phillipian, “St. Paul’s was a good team; their ladder had a lot of depth which made them strong competitors in each individual match. All of our matches were very close in score, and I think everyone on our team did a good job applying what we worked on in practice to our games and focusing on each point.”

According to Elkheshen, Spaulding stood out as role model in the team’s match against St. Paul’s.  

“Skyler’s goal for today was to keep her head in the game and focus on the other girls weaknesses in order to win. Today she really gave her best and she tried to play every single point as best as she could. She won which was really nice,” she said.

Andover will travel away to compete against Groton this Friday.