by Tom Utescher

Tigers sophomore Zack Idinopulos serves in the number two match against Shipley. (Photo by Tom Utescher)

When Germantown Friends and Shipley School play one another in squash, the encounter amounts to a sort of unofficial Friends Schools League championship match. Friends Central is the only other FSL member school that fields a team, and it is still in the developing stages.

When the Shipley Gators came to Germantown Cricket Club on February 3, GFS sophomores Max Daniel and Amar Mohamed won for the host Tigers in the number six and seven matches, but the visitors took the other bouts for a 7-2 victory.

Tommy Fournaris, a senior who’ll continue on to play for Franklin & Marshall College, is normally the GFS number one, but he was out sick on the day of the Shipley match. The Tigers had to bump up their other athletes to play one flight higher in the match order.

GFS coach Chris Longman observed that while having a healthy Fournaris wouldn’t have changed the final outcome, it would probably have made for a closer contest.

Junior Sean Park moved up to play number one for the Tigers, and he lost by scores of 11-6, 11-6, 11-4 to Shipley senior Maxwell Orr, who will go on to play for Yale University. Two sophomores squared off in the second spot, where visitor Asher Leavy got the better of Zack Indinopulos of GFS, 11-9, 11-7, 11-7.

These matches were both held on GCC’s gallery viewing court, where the first Tiger to appear was senior Caleb Friedman-Spring. Also a baseball pitcher, Friedman-Spring succumbed to visitor Alex Orr in the number three match, 11-3, 11-8, 11-6. The last match on this court featured the number fours in a bout won by Shipley’s Grant Williams, 11-3, 11-8, 11-6. GFS junior Gray Kearns appeared frustrated by his own play at some points, as he hit a number of low shots that were near misses, sending the ball into the tin.

Senior Caleb Friedman-Spring was playing number three for GFS in last Monday’s home match. (Photo by Tom Utescher)

The Tigers put on their best performances in the middle of the line-up. At number five, Daniel opened with an 11-5 win, but Eric Rosenbaum of the Gators took the second game at 11-9. Daniel regrouped to win the next two frames, 11-2, 11-7 for a 3-1 victory.

Fellow 10th grader Mohamed went through to a win in straight games, turning in scores of 11-6, 11-5, 12-10 against his guest, Sam Knoll. Another Shipley Sam, Sam Costarelis, won the first game at number five.

Germantown Friends junior Kenji Moriuchi did a nice job of changing up the pace and placement of his shots to capture the next two rounds, 11-5, 11-8, then Costarelis adapted to pull out the match with hard-fought wins in the fourth and fifth games, 13-11, 12-10.

Tigers number eight Chris Li, a sophomore, went down to the Gators’ Gabe Malabuyo, 11-6, 11-8, 11-6, and GFS freshman Hugh Rigdon bowed, 11-9, 11-8, 11-8 to the Shipley number nine, Aidan McCall.