By Bob York
This season, it was Class A – all the way!
Last winter, the Big Green boys squash team played its way through a difficult Class A regular-season schedule (8-10) and then, due to its enrollment size, entered the Class B New England tournament. Once there, the Deerfield “Wallbangers” took no prisoners. They won four of seven brackets, while two other players finished third in their competition.
This year, following a 10-10 showing against Class A teams, tourney officials opted to leave the Big Green on the same level. The result was a 10th-place finish out of a field of 16 teams. And to its credit, Deerfield earned five top10 finishes.
Competing in the rarified air of the Class A tourney obviously played a part in the Big Green ending up in the also-ran category, but an overall lack of experience did as well. Last year’s title team enjoyed the services of five seniors, this year’s club had none. This winter, four juniors, two sophomores and three freshmen adorned the Deerfield roster.
“The kids really worked hard this season and learned a lot from the experience they got,” said coach Mike Silipo. “And considering we’re not losing anyone from this year’s team, I feel good about the direction this program is headed in.
This winter’s No.1 slot belonged to Tripp Kaelin (14), who earned a 10-10 record in what can prove to be a rather cruel world competing amongst the primary seeds of New England prep school squash. Kaelin then finished ninth in the top bracket at the New England tourney.
Ted Henderson (13) went 10-10 on the regular season as well in the No.2 slot, then wound up 13th at the New England tourney, while Cam Dewey (14) was 12-8 at No.3, before winding up ninth at the New Englands. The fourth seed belonged to Connor Henderson (15), where he rang up a 13-7 record and a ninth-place finish on the New England level.
Tom Cowan (13) ended up at 11-9 on the regular season, then placed ninth in postseason play, while Tad Huffard (15) was 10-10, then wound up 13th in tourney action. Dan Blohm (13) was No.7 in the lineup, where, at 14-6, he produced the most wins for the Big Green and registered the team’s best finish at the New England tournament with a sixth-place showing.
Rounding out the roster were George Reich (13) and Jamie Kjorlein (15).