Courtside

Your Guide to GW sports

Sunday, Feb. 5, 2012 9:13 a.m.

Squash teams stay strong on Senior Day

Sophomore Jackie Shea prepares to return the ball back to her Bucknell opponent. Shea, the number one seed, helped lead the Colonials to victory over the Bisons. Francis Rivera | Assistant Photo Editor

This post was written by Hatchet Reporter Louis Serino.

If there is a single word to describe the GW squash teams, it would be “family.” And Saturday, both the men’s and women’s teams pulled together as a family for a 5-0 record over Senior Day weekend, sending their senior members out with a bang.

The No. 19 women’s team (10-8) swept three consecutive matches over Virginia, Vanderbilt and Bucknell as they bid farewell to seniors Tiffany Hingley, Lauren Mathieu and Caroline Shumway. Not to be outdone, the No. 18 men’s squad (12-8) echoed this success with two wins of their own over Vanderbilt and Johns Hopkins. Departing this season are seniors Jose Calderon, Brett Feldman and Adam Pistel.

“These seniors are the bomb,” men’s and women’s head coach Wendy Lawrence said. “They will be incredibly missed as players, leaders and recruiters.”

Dropping only one set against Vanderbilt, the men’s team cruised to a 9-0 victory behind especially dominant performances by sophomore Chris Bell and junior Player Haynes. In the second half of the double-header, after one final Feldman chest bump and Pistel signature handshake in front of the home crowd, the Colonials again proved their toughness by besting Johns Hopkins 8-1. The only game GW dropped turned out to be a rousing epic, as Bell fell just short in a marathon match ending 22-20 in the deciding set.

“This year’s group has worked very hard and overcome a lot of things,” Lawrence said. “They’ve really stuck together.”

The women began the weekend strong with a 9-0 sweep of Virginia on Friday. Sophomores Adriana Calderon, Maya Nair and Becca Imrich glided through each of their matches giving up six total points or less.

The GW women did not let up on Saturday, coasting to 9-0 triumphs over Vanderbilt and Bucknell. Vanderbilt had to forfeit the final four matches due to a lack of competitors. Lawrence attributed much of the women’s success to the leadership of the senior captains.

“The team never would have come as far as it has without them,” Lawrence said.

The graduating seniors who competed all performed admirably, winning every match in which they competed. The only senior who didn’t compete was Pistel, who suffered a foot injury two weeks ago in a grueling five-set match against St. Lawrence that held him out of competition.

“It feels great to win in our last games at home,” Calderon said. “But it is also bittersweet to be leaving. The seniors gave a lot to the team and the team gave a lot to us.”