Team Profile: Girls Squash

Cora Partridge, Campus Reporter

With the recent conclusion of Kent’s winter academic term came the synchronous conclusion of the school’s winter sports. Covid restrictions have pervaded nearly every aspect of our lives for almost a year now, but they have hit this particular sports season especially hard. Accounting for an extended winter break and a period of virtual school, many sports were only able to meet for five weeks at most. Among these sports is Kent’s Girls Squash Program. While this has undoubtedly been an unusual season for the program, all of the teams which compose it–varsity, JV and recreational–have nonetheless managed to come together for an incredible experience this past winter.

Mr. Kastilahn has been coaching girls squash for three years here at Kent. Due to the difficulties presented by our unusual winter schedule, he adopted a two point approach to achieve a successful season. “With the knowledge that we were going to be limited in terms of competition, in terms of what practices would look like, I wanted to focus on two things,” he reflected. “The first of which was developing their skill set… and the other big thing I was concerned about was that they enjoyed it. We’re missing a lot of the elements that you would traditionally find in an athletic season… With all that’s going on, making squash practice a place that they want to go and are excited about is something that I tried to emphasize.”

According to Sydney Sheinfeld, a JV player, that goal has absolutely been achieved. “Kent squash is just amazing,” she said. “Even though we hadn’t had a lot of team bonding, everything was just so energetic. Everyone knows each other and it’s a good time all around. The coaches are really nice and very helpful… When we had a competition, everyone that had gone was celebrating the victories together. The coaches watched everyone’s game so that we could better improve in the next round… It’s been a really nice experience.”

“It’s different than anything I’ve tried before,” said Ivy Hillman, who played squash for the first time this winter on the girls recreational team. “Everyone should try it… It’s a great place to play.’

It is crystal clear from these glowing reports that the recently concluded Girls Squash season has been an undisputed success, both on and off the court. Overcoming the unique obstacles of this term, they have forged meaningful connections in the face of adversity to reach new heights of personal and team growth.