OOPS! You may have been looking to read about the Boston JCT – and someone on staff (Paul :)) just “may” have had an old link left on our newsletter! If you are looking to read about Boston, click here… else enjoy the info below from the AIS Silver!
Veterans Day arrived and for the second successive weekend in PA, a US Squash sanctioned Silver arrived in town, with AIS hosting in Bryn Mawr. Last week, MVP of the week was Nick Parente for his victory in the Bu19’s and the question this time around was, who could succeed Nick and bring home the next Silver title. After close to 20 hours of action, Scozzie amazingly had 4 of 7 divisional champions… read on to hear who our heroes were on a memorable Veterans Day weekend.
Titles, titles and… more titles
Last weekend, we had finalists in every age bracket and by Sunday afternoon, there was some eery comparisons. Ethan L once again reached the BU13 final and again faced the #1 seed in the final. He gained valuable learning experience from last weekend’s loss and looked a more composed and confident outfit for his second opportunity at Silver success. After losing a nervy first game 11/7, Ethan never looked back. A subtle change in tactics and Ethan suddenly found his finest form of the season. He raced through through games 2 and 3 before clinching his first title of the season with a 11/9 comeback victory in Game 4.
Starting 1/1 was a huge boost for Scozzie confidence after starting 0 for 3 last weekend before Nick sealed the Bu19’s. Immediately up on court 1 was the GU13 final and we had another finalist in Anika! She had already had a successful event after gaining revenge in the quarter final against an opponent who had beaten her at the recent Regionals and then backed it up with a solid 3/1 victory in the semi’s. In the final she faced an EA classmate with an identical rating, it was a match up to close to call. Just like Ethan, Anika overcame a slow start to finally start producing her best squash in Game 3 at 1-1. Her retrieving and reflexes were at a whole new level and fought through to win 3/1 and complete the U13 clean sweep! Huge congratulations to Ethan and Anika for the victories and producing their best squash of the season in the big moments of their respective finals. Clutch closing at its finest!
2 for 2 and it couldn’t get much easier, with back to back All Scozzie finals in the BU15 and BU17 finals! Finally the coaches could put their feet up and leave the coaching to mom and dad! First up was Albert vs Matt K in the 15’s. Albert celebrated his 13 birthday at Scozzie mid week and had a great revenge victory over a tough semi final opponent who had beaten him at the end of summer. Matt K is just back from injury and played phenomenally to blow past his semi final opponent, looking at his devastating best! It was the final everyone wanted to see and the boys didn’t disappoint. Matt had a big lead in G1 before Albert comeback to sneak it 11/9. Game 2 was all Albert and at 10/6 match ball, it looked to be a 3/0 win for the birthday boy. One thing you can never underestimate with Matt, is his resilience and never say die attitude. He won the next 5 points and saved numerous match balls, only to eventual go down in 13/11 in overtime. A great weekend for both boys and gaining valuable points as they begin the early quest in U15’s after both aging up in Fall.
3/3 and then 4/4 as Tom and Nikhil concluded our Super Sunday menu match up of consecutive finals on Court 1! Boy, was it a cracking match to cap off the weekend. 5 games, great squash from both at times, scrappy squash at others… but undeniably, it was a grueling contest between two good friends and school matches putting everything on the line. Nikhil struck first, Tom bounced back to lead 2/1, Nikhil struck back. Game 5 was anyone’s guess… but just as he has done on so many prior occasions, turbulent Tom steadies the ship when it matters most! The energizer bunny finds extra gears when you least expect and after 45 mins of grueling exertion, Tom raised the energy and effort to another level in the decider. An extremely impressive performance and a well earned Silver title for young man who appears to be finding his peak form at the perfect time.
The 5th final was the biggest of the day and it was the final match concluding the AIS Silver after all the regular matches had concluded . However, there was a twist… it was tennis, not squash…. and it was doubles, not singles! The match up – recently crowned champion Anika paired with coach Lyall vs Nikhil and his Mom! By far the best match of the day, maybe the whole season, maybe even the greatest ever… Anika and Lyall came through 2-1 and were they were crowned Mixed Doubles Champions of the World (p.s thanks for carrying me Anika, your net play saved us!)
A massive well done to Tom, Albert, Anika and Ethan for winning 4 of 7 total brackets and cementing another Scozzie success story. Also to our All Scozzie finalists, who can be just as proud. Losing is never easy, especially when it comes to finals. But, the best learning experiences are gained from such scenarios and y’all will be better squash players as a result. Chins up, a huge season ahead which is only just really starting and with the winter months approaching, now is the time to shine!
5 Top 5
On top of our finalists, we had another host of Scozzie’s who achieved season best results and made their mark with top 5 finishes. Ben, Lindsay and Neil all reached semi finals, the latter was a Sunday hero with a 3/4 play off victory in one of the matches of the weekend – 5 game thriller which ended with a sublime 5th from Neil to seal it. Grant gained valuable experience from the strong U11 division and fought hard on route to 5th place. Austin completed the 5 top 5’s, with an extremely impressive victory in the U13 Consols. He lost out to Matt K in R2, but then defeated fellow Scozzie’s Omar and Sam on a destructive run to the consol championship title. Phil won 6th place and was a whisker away from 5th, losing in Consolation Final in 4 close games.
Scozzie of the Week – MVP
Albert Chen! Went into the weekend as an undefeated 13 year old after aging up on Wednesday and started his U15 career in devastating fashion. One of the countries most improved players, he climbed over 100 spots from 130+ in the ranking to 23 within 6 months!! One of the most incredible stats you’ll see, Albert is now shooting for a return back to the top 32 asap. In his current form, it’s not a question of if, but just, how quickly!!
What a weekend and another memorable chapter to remember from Scozzie Season 7. Four winners, 11 top 5 finishes and a thousand of learning lessons to take back to Scozzie and improve from. The next PA Silver will be Scozzie’s home event on December 2nd, get your entries in early and let’s perfect the preparation plans leading up to it. Between now and then, it’s JcT #3 in Boston, followed by our annual Thanksgiving Turkey Bowl on Thursday 23rd where we have over 20 Alums returning from their respective colleges to take on Scozzie’s current crop of high schoolers and coaches! A match up not to be missed, what excitement to come in the next few weeks. Stay tuned….