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Mid-Atlantic JCT - Squash Tiger Reportage!

Squash Tigers celebrated our first Birthday this past weekend, and what better way to celebrate than to run a big weekend of squads and coach through the Mid-Atlantic JCT! What a weekend it was…!

The Mid-Atlantic JCT was held in Washington DC this past weekend! Although with a title like “mid-Atlantic”, it sounds like the event should take place in a boat, it was actually held at the elegantly named “Squash on Fire” and “The Saint James” - two simply beautiful venues locked down there in what is not exactly known as a hotbed of squash!

As always, US Squash ran the event exceedingly well, with their staff working long days and yet always managing to be a voice of reason… Truly, the event was a pleasure and conducted for the most part in accordance with the high levels of sportsmanship… and it never hurts that the ST kids played fantastically well!

For those unfamiliar with JCT’s they are explained by US Squash as the “highest level of junior tournament, which attracts the best players from around the entire country. US Squash accredits 5 JCT tournaments each year and each event is played over the course of three full days.” Long story short, the best 32 players from each age group get together and test each other out roughly once a month in season… it doesn’t get more fun than that!

Like an episode of a 1980’s sitcom, this JCT could be entitled, “The JCT where almost everyone aged up!”... so when you keep noting this phrase popping up all over the report… you’ve been warned!

Not only was this the JCT where “everyone” aged up - it was also the JCT of GIRL POWER (god bless the 1980’s)! The event, as it so often is, was headlined by Reghan, who made the final of the GU15 in fine style, defeating Lily in an all Squash Tiger, all leftie semi! Upon writing this, it appears we should make an “All leftie semi” t-shirt, but I digress. Shout out to both who treated us to a great event, Lily’s semi-final defeat of the #2 seed was memorable and a great reward for hard work!

Upwards and onwards to congratulate Mimi in the U11’s and Madeleine in the U13’s. Mimi enjoyed her best finish of the season, coming in 5th position in an awesome draw. Mimi has won two golds, and gradually built her JCT profile to this weekend's result - great stuff! Madeleine on her behalf was in her first JCT and finished in a remarkable 11/12 place! Both girls exhibited great skill and effort throughout and gave Coach Jamie several notable heart attacks! Much to be happy about…!

The BU17 had our three Big Dogs, Colten, Alex and Parth. Although Colten has so often been the headliner this season, with JCT wins and the BU15 #1 ranking (before he aged up), from a ST perspective, this event was owned by Alex. Having “just aged up this week”, Alex went from #3 in the country to unseeded. After losing to the #1 seed first round he ran the consolidation draw ragged, with a magnificent 9th place! Colten and Parth were both skilled and gutsy, theirs is another day.

Our sole GU17 competitor, Claire, who has (say it with me) “recently aged up”, played a great event and finished , 11/12 place. After starting the season in the GU15 and achieving semi finals and quarter finals of JCT’s, aging up has been challenging, but the standard of squash displayed by Claire in this event was much to be proud of… One of the hardest workers amongst the hardest workers, there are bigger things ahead.

The BU15 featured Eric, JJ and Shrikar - all of whom had memorable stories! JJ literally aged up during the event - Happy Birthday big guy! As with many others, suddenly JJ went from #1 in the country and winner of two JCT’s - to an unseeded young man in a big draw. JJ acquitted himself well, as did Eric who is always master of the unpredictable and both should be proud of their efforts. Additionally, Shrikar was welcomed into his first JCT, won a match and played some epic matches… welcome to the big time mate!

Overall the Mid-Atlantic JCT (where almost everyone aged up :) ) was a huge success. Congratulations to the players and thank you to the parents who gave of their time to escort the kids and give them the opportunity. Many thanks also to Coach Jamie, who made the trip, coached hard all day, then trained each evening to prepare for upcoming PSA events. Easy to talk about dedication, but even better to be an example of it, and role models don’t come any better than Coach Jamie.

Back at the club it’s a VOLLEY DROP week, preparation for the Atlanta Gold this coming weekend (amongst other things) and staying sharp for the plethora of school matches on the horizon. It’s been a spectacular season so far and now’s not the time to let up! See you all at training, bigger things ahead.


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