Squash sweeps Georgetown in season opener

Men’s and women’s squash kicked off regular season play Friday with a 9–0 program sweep of Georgetown at home.

Each Colonial up and down the men’s and women’s ladders recorded a sweep against Georgetown’s club squash team, going 3-0 in each of their games to open the season with a bang.

“Today was our first home opener and we’ve been practicing for two months and everybody’s eager to go,” head coach Wendy Lawrence said. “It’s always great. It’s always nice. It makes everybody feel good.”

The women’s squad held a commanding presence on the court, winning each game by an average of 8.8 points. Junior Engy Elmandough recorded two shutouts against Nina Thomas at the No. 2 spot and freshman Zoe Eberstadt-Beattie tallied one shutout against Alex Wang at the No. 9 spot.

Elmandough said the win set the tone for the season and brought the team closer together.

“It was 9–0, 3–0, we didn’t drop a single game,” Elmandough said. “It’s very good for our team morale, our team dynamic.”

Dean Whitelaw | Hatchet Photographer

Spectators watch a women’s squash match during GW’s home opener.

The men’s team brought the same energy as the women, winning each game by an average of 8.1 points. Junior Juan Laguna held the sole shutout for the men in the seventh spot on the ladder, blanking Brandon Tong in their third and final set to secure the match.

Senior Moudy Abdel-Maksoud said starting the season off with a win has been a staple for GW’s squash program the last four years and the best way to kick off a season.

“We always start the season with a win,” Abdel-Maksoud said. “It sets up a good rhythm for the team and a good attitude that you know the team’s coming.”

Abdel-Maksoud, the top-spot player for the men’s squad, briefly exited the court early in his second game against his Georgetown opponent. He returned to the play but held a painful expression for the rest of the game and closed out the match 11-5, 11-7, and 11-6.

Abdel-Maksoud said he tweaked his back scoring the first point of the second match but was cleared to return to play by the team’s trainer.

The men’s squad travels to Annapolis, Md., to play No. 26 Hobart and No. 12 Western Ontario Saturday and Sunday. Junior Jamie Oakley’s older brother senior Josh Oakley holds the top spot on Hobart’s ladder.

“I think we just have to be steady and let them make the mistakes,” Lawrence said. “Being steady and not making a lot of errors is the key to winning those matches.”

Women’s squash eyes No. 3 Princeton and No. 6 Pennsylvania as it prepares for the rest of its season.

“Princeton and Penn will be a little bit tougher to beat, and they’re a higher ranking than us,” Elmandough said. “We’re fitter. We put in the work, so we can stay up there with them.”

The women’s team is back in action Saturday Nov. 17 to take on No. 6 Pennsylvania in Philadelphia at 2:30 p.m. The men’s team returns to play Saturday in a matchup against Hobart at noon on the road.

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