US SQUASH

Celebrating the Class of 2020: Fourth Installment

Thousands of junior squash players of all levels across the country compete and enjoy squash as a regular part of their lives. Each year, hundreds graduate from junior squash while retaining the values practiced in the sport, the close and enduring friendships they have formed, and with an enduring love for squash as a lifelong sport.

Over the coming weeks, US Squash will be celebrating the members of the high school Class of 2020 in an ongoing series where each student athlete reflects upon their experiences in junior squash. If you are a high school senior and have not already submitted your own picture and reflection, please follow these instructions to do so.

Read the other installments of the series here: June 24July 10, July 24.

US Squash Senior Class of 2020 Gift Initiative

In honor of the culmination of the entire class’s junior squash journey.
In support of US Squash junior development programs.

The Senior Class of 2020 has come together with a Class Gift initiative seeking to establish the precedent for graduating classes to come together in celebration of the entire class’s achievements, on and off the court, and in support of US Squash’s junior development programs. It will be the first senior class gift and will cement the Class of 2020’s legacy, which is only appropriate in these extraordinary times. Recognition of this leadership initiative will endure with a plaque at the Arlen Specter US Squash Center.

For more information visit the Class of 2020 Gift page.

Make a Gift

Gicel Abraham | UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA DAVIS
Junior Squash has really changed my life for the better. It has provided me with a community full of skilled and determined players that I can always go to for advice, training, and even to play a friendly match. My most exciting memory was being part of the 2018 GU19 Nationals team from my squash program. I really felt the support of my coach, team members, and the squash community as a whole for believing in me. Junior Squash has opened up a new door full of opportunities that I hope to continue when I am in college and for the rest of my life.
Raji Davenport | HOBART AND WILLIAM SMITH COLLEGES
Squash has played a huge role in my life since I started playing in the fifth grade. SquashDrive is my second family and I am very thankful for everything they do for me and my family. One of my favorite memories with SquashDrive was a trip to San Diego for a squash tournament because I got to spend a lot of quality time with my teammates.
Anika Kanchi | COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY

Squash is a lifelong endeavor that has taught me self-discipline, independence, respect for opponents, how to handle a loss with elegance, and, most of all, the ability to overcome setbacks. I am so thankful to be playing this amazing sport through college and a big thanks to US Squash for all the memories.
Eli Khan | UNIVERSITY OF VERMONT
PCS has made me realize that it’s the connections that you make with people throughout your life that are important. If I had to give up the nice courts and fancy gear, I’d do it in a second to be able to keep those connections and that community we’ve created there. PCS will always have a special place in my heart, it taught me the importance of human connection and that community isn’t the place you currently reside in, it’s the people you’re there with.
Pierce Henderson | WILLIAMS COLLEGE
Squash has been a huge part of my life for as long as I can remember. I’d be a very different person had I never started playing. I’ve gotten to meet so many great people through squash over the years, with a few of them becoming some of my closest friends. Also, squash has taught me about the importance of sportsmanship and how to put it into action on and off the court. Squash practice is always a highlight of my day and I’m excited to be able to continue playing at college next year.
Morgan Huberman | UNDECIDED

During my junior squash career I have had the privilege to travel the world and meet a ton of new people. One of my most memorable experiences was traveling to Egypt over the summer to train with some of the best players in the world. Overall, squash has helped me immensely on and off the court with sportsmanship and responsibility.
Binney Huffman | HARVARD UNIVERSITY

Squash has given me so many amazing opportunities and has been such a highlight of my junior years. From training to playing in tournaments and getting to meet new people, I’ve created so many lasting friendships. Some of my favorite memories come from the international element of the sport such as competing in the British Junior Open¬ and Junior Pan Ams, which has given me the chance to play people from all over the world. Ever since I was young, Junior squash has been such a great community of people and I’m so fortunate to have had all of these experiences. I could not be more excited to play next year in college!
Graham Joyce | DARTMOUTH COLLEGE
My junior squash career not only kept me focused and active, but also helped me become more resilient, competitive, and goal-oriented. Although it’s an individual sport, I have built many great relationships in the squash world and will cherish each forever. I am now moving on to play more competitively in college and can’t wait to see everyone compete on a different stage. Thank you to all who operate US squash and for all the experiences I’ll remember forever.
Margo Mancuso | ST. LAWRENCE UNIVERSITY
Squash has played a substantial role in my life and has shaped me into the person I am today. Not only has it taught me grit and resilience, but it has allowed me to compete against amazing players and make lifelong friends. One of my favorite memories of junior squash is competing at High School Nationals with my team, Lawrenceville. My coaches, Narelle and Rob, made the experience all the more enjoyable. Thank you to everyone that has helped me during my squash career, and I look forward to competing in college!
Isabel Paine | PRINCETON UNIVERSITY
Squash, to me, differs from every other sport because of the strength and caliber of our community. It’s been such an honor not only to compete against and train with so many talented and resilient individuals, but also to grow up with them. As I think back to my U11 and U13 days, I get nostalgic, for I have been seeing the same faces over and over for so many years. It’s crazy to think that we are all moving on from the junior squash circuit, but I also look forward to the road ahead. Squash has made me tougher and stronger, but most importantly, it has given me passion and lifelong friendships. Thank you to Narelle and Rob Krizek for the best four years I could ask for at Lawrenceville, as our team shared an unbreakable bond. Thanks to Gail and PJS for teaching me to play this wonderful sport and inspiring me from the start. I hope to walk on the team next year to continue training. Finally, thanks to everyone out there who has shaped my squash experience, including opponents, coaches, and teammates, as you have made me so proud to say I’m a squash player.
Retia Patton | NORTHERN ILLINOIS UNIVERSITY
Squash, to me, differs from every other sport because of the strength and caliber of our community. It’s been such an honor not only to compete against and train with so many talented and resilient individuals, but also to grow up with them. As I think back to my U11 and U13 days, I get nostalgic, for I have been seeing the same faces over and over for so many years. It’s crazy to think that we are all moving on from the junior squash circuit, but I also look forward to the road ahead. Squash has made me tougher and stronger, but most importantly, it has given me passion and lifelong friendships. Thank you to Narelle and Rob Krizek for the best four years I could ask for at Lawrenceville, as our team shared an unbreakable bond. Thanks to Gail and PJS for teaching me to play this wonderful sport and inspiring me from the start. I hope to walk on the team next year to continue training. Finally, thanks to everyone out there who has shaped my squash experience, including opponents, coaches, and teammates, as you have made me so proud to say I’m a squash player.
Emely Rodriguez | UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA SAN DIEGO
Being part of Junior Squash has played a large role in my life. I officially started playing when I was in 7th grade but I am the third generation in a squash program so it feels like I have been part of the program long before that. My biggest takeaway from being part of Junior Squash was the importance and power of being hardworking, open minded and resilient. I have been able to apply skills on and off the court, which has served as an advantage, especially in my college transition. A highlight from playing in Junior Squash was traveling to the East Coast. On this trip I was able to learn more about myself, my teammates, and explore new ideas.
Olivia Robinson | PRINCETON UNIVERSITY
I can’t imagine my life without squash. Thanks to this amazing sport, not only do I get to do what I love every day, but I’ve also met the greatest friends I could ask for. The squash community has been invaluable to me and has allowed me to feel like part of one big, global family. Squash has brought me so much happiness, and I am beyond grateful to all who have supported me on this journey, particularly the US Squash team who have done so much to make junior squash the best experience possible. One of my top highlights was getting the chance to go to Malaysia this past summer with the most perfect, supportive team. Even though I’m excited and ready to move on to college squash, this transition is bittersweet, and it’s difficult to express just how much I will miss junior squash and the incredible people it introduced me to.
Dana Santry | UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA
Squash has been one of the largest factors in my life ever since I began playing tournaments at the age of seven. Not only has it played a huge roll in my athletics since middle school, it has taught me countless lessons that I can apply to all facets of my life. Whether it was learning to never give up even if you find yourself in the undesirable consolation or facing the reality that all matches are won in preparation for the tournament, it was all very important for my growth as an individual. I have been playing tournaments since I can remember and I can’t believe it’s already over. Thank you so much US Squash for allowing kids like me to compete and improve throughout every season.
Sanjana Vissapragada| TUFTS UNIVERSITY
I never thought when I played squash for the first time that it would be an integral part of my life that has shaped me into the person I am today. I have learned so many life lessons on and off court of dedication, resilience, and hard work. Some of my fondest memories have been spending hours with friends at the courts, playing squash and hanging out. I’m so grateful for my coaches and parents who have supported me throughout junior squash, especially during those 8 am matches. I am excited to continue playing squash at Tufts next year.

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