Andover Defeats Deerfield Leading Up to Nationals

Aidan Lin ’23 won 12-10 in the fifth game of a close match, coming back from being one game down to secure a victory. Andover Boys Squash defeated Deerfield 6-1 on Saturday, bringing its record to 11-4 as the National Championships approach.

According to Steve Nam ’20, the team was supportive of Lin from the start as he pulled through with a close win.

Nam said, “Aidan’s game was definitely one of the closest matches of the day. Even from the first game, I remember the score being very close and I could see that it would probably go to 5 games. I think what made Aidan’s game special was that once people saw how close each game was, the team began getting behind Aidan to try and support him.”

The team performed well against Deerfield, demonstrating its strength and improvement from previous seasons, according to Erik Wang ’21.

“I think the team did really well, especially because Deerfield has been a historically strong team, and we’ve never beaten them in the past. I think beating them 6-1 this year was a really strong end to our season, and we’re looking to bring that result into Nationals this year,” said Wang.

According to Wang, the team has focused on improving its fitness and technique throughout the season, and Saturday’s success reflected the hard work that the players have put in.

Wang said, “We’ve been working a lot on our fitness and keeping the ball tight under pressure, which is something our coach has been working with us a lot on. We’ve done a lot of hard sessions primarily, focused on fitness and footwork. That paid off, because we had a lot of really tight matches, and we played pretty well in those close matches and we were able to stick with our opponents and beat them in the end.”

As the season has progressed, the team has also improved in staying in the game mentally and pre-match preparations, according to Arthur Nguyen ’22.

“There’s definitely a big improvement in mentality and match preparation since the first match of the season. Also, our technique as well has gotten a lot better and there has been a lot of team spirit and cheering,” said Nguyen.

With Nationals coming up, Andover will be playing Belmont Hill for its first-round match on Friday after losing to them 7-0 in the first match of the season. According to Wang, the team hopes to stick with Belmont Hill and improve from the first match.

“We’re looking to capitalize on that and take advantage of an opportunity to get revenge on them. Their team is really strong this year, but I think we’ve improved a lot over the course of this season, so I think our main focus is just to stick with our opponents and to make the match last as long as possible and make it as close as possible,” said Wang.