Squash practices relocate to BU
This winter, instead of waking at 5 a.m. or staying at school until 7 p.m. for practice at Belmont Hill, the squash teams now have regular practice times at Boston University (BU).
Over the summer, Upper School Athletic Director Carolyn Polley contracted squash courts at BU and arranged for buses to transport both the girls’ and boys’ teams to the university. Last year, players had to reach the Belmont Hill courts on their own.
The new location at BU has only four courts, as opposed to the eight at Belmont Hill—a change Boys Varsity Squash Co-Captain Gautam Mitra ’17 regretted.
“I love having a normal practice schedule that doesn’t make me get up early in the morning or wait at school until late at night,” he said. “But unfortunately, we have an expanded program this year with fewer courts, so that results in less net playing time.”
Though the school wasn’t able to schedule games at BU this year—the team can only play away games—Ms. Polley hopes to secure courts for games as well next year.
GVL gets new head
Bringing with her a strong lacrosse pedigree and experience coaching athletes of all ages, Kathleen Ragan will join the Girls’ Varsity Lacrosse (GVL) program this spring as its head coach—a move that will bring enthusiasm to the role and make an immediate impact on the lives of GVL players, Upper School Athletic Director Carolyn Polley said in an email to the community.
Coach Ragan spent the last three years with 3D Lacrosse, a nation-wide lacrosse services company, as a coach for New England girls’ teams and programs. Before that, Coach Ragan played as a midfielder for four years at William Smith, where as a senior she captained the squad and was awarded team MVP. She was also named three times to an All Liberty League team and earned a spot on the 2013 Intercollegiate Women’s Lacrosse Association All-Empire Region Second Team, according to the 3D Lacrosse website.
“I am eager to share my passion for lacrosse and teach the life-long skills the sport has taught me,” Coach Ragan said, citing leadership, time management, resilience, and communication among those skills.
The new position opened up when former GVL Head Coach Holly Drown moved this fall to assume a lacrosse coaching position at Lakeside School in Seattle. Ms. Polley said that although there were many candidates to choose from, Coach Ragan was the frontrunner from the beginning to the end of the search.
“She has shown clear leadership qualities through her work in the sport and is very connected in the ever-evolving world of girls lacrosse,” Ms. Polley added.
GVH ventures to Midwest arenas
The Girls’ Varsity Hockey (GVH) team traveled to the University of Minnesota and River Falls, Wisconsin, during the weekend of December 3 to secure wins against the Minnesota Revolution, Faribault Falcons, and Minnesota Elite—all club teams—before suffering a 9–2 loss to Shattuck St. Mary’s, a high school squad from Faribault, Minnesota.
GVH Head Coach Ed Bourget said the primary objective of the trip was to show the athletes what it takes to play college sports, adding that he organized the games through his personal connections.
“Most of our players are preparing to play college hockey, and most weekends student athletes must find the balance between completing their school work and playing games on the road,” Coach Bourget said.
The players said the away games were a great way to kick off the season.
“Having to fly with the team to play many other talented teams was really fun,” GVH Co-Captain Nell Fusco ’17 said. “But the most valuable piece was exploring a new place together.”
GVH Co-Captain Shannon Griffin ’17 said the team came together and gained a lot of confidence through their performance.
“I’m looking forward to the season because of this trip,” she added. “We are really playing to our full capability.”