Annapolis, MD — The United States Naval Academy plays one of the busiest schedules in college squash. Last season, the Midshipmen played 34 matches, finishing with a 26-8 record.
Not surprisingly, one of the team’s goals is to stay fit to play competitive squash throughout the season. Last year, the Midshipmen had three tough matches at the Men’s National Team Championships: a 4-5 loss to F&M (improving on a 3-6 loss to the Diplomats the week before), and 6-3 wins over both St. Lawrence and Bowdoin. The majority of individual matches went beyond three games or had games going into extra points, so fitness and endurance were instrumental in the Midshipmen’s success.
The 2010-2011 Navy squad will need to draw on that work ethic as the three seniors who graduated (among them Nils Mattsson, a 2009-2010 All-American) played in the top four. Joining the varsity roster will be sophomore Clayton Young, who played junior varsity last season and should compete for a spot near the bottom of the ladder; first-year player Hunter Beck, a William Penn grad who was ranked as high as 17th U19 and should play in the Midshipmen’s top 3; and Emile Toscano, who played number 2 for Mercersburg and should play in the middle of the ladder at Navy.
Over the summer, all of the players participated in the Naval Academy’s summer training. According to coach Craig Dawson, that training ranged from Marines Corps Leatherneck to survival training on the Olympic Penisula, sailing Naval Academy training craft along the East Coast, training the new Plebe Class, and flying in helicopters and jet fighters off of aircraft carriers.
The Navy courts were busy over the summer as well. The Navy team has been involved with the Baltimore-based SquashWise urban squash enrichment program, and seven players from SquashWise, SquashSmarts, Street Squash and City Squash attended the Navy Squash Camp.
Looking ahead, the team is planning a training trip to San Fransisco in January, and plans are in development to build a doubles court at Navy.
2009-2010 SEASON RECAP
Season Record: 26-8
Final Ranking: 13
Team Championships: 13th Overall; 5th in Hoehn Cup (“B” Division)
2010-2011 SEASON PREVIEW
Program Status: Varsity
Head Coach: Craig Dawson
Returning Players from Team Championships: Billy Abrams (6); Hunter Bouchard (7); David Koenig (8); Allan Lutz (2); John Richey (9); Brad Seidel (5); John Tracey (10)
Graduates on Last Season’s Team Championships Roster: Justin Langan (4); Ben Mantica (3); Nils Mattsson (1; 2nd Team All-American; 2009-2010 Captain)
Additions to the 2010-2011 Roster:
- Expected to play in the top 3: Hunter Beck
- Expected to play in the middle 3: Emile Toscano
- Expected to play in the bottom 3: Clayton Young
Captain: Brad Seidel
Team Goals: Work to stay fit and play competitive squash in order to move up in the rankings
To read other team previews, please visit the 2010 – 2011 College Squash Preview Page.