Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

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Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

SQUASH | Georgetown Postseason Champions for First Time in Young History

Georgetown squash, in its third year as an official university-sponsored team, won the B division of the Collegiate Squash Association Divisional Team Championships.
College Squash Association | Georgetown squash celebrated its first trophy in program history

Three years after becoming an official university-sponsored sport, Georgetown squash lifted its first championship trophy in program history.

After rattling off three consecutive victories, the No. 15 Hoyas (14-8) won the Kurtz Cup, a single-elimination tournament between the 13th through 20th-ranked women’s teams in the nation, at the 2024 College Squash Association (CSA) Divisional Team Championships. After sweeping the No. 18 Bowdoin Polar Bears (8-9) and No. 14 William Smith Herons (12-4) 9-0, Georgetown University clinched the chip in a 7-2 victory over the No. 16 Williams Ephs (12-11).

Head Coach Tim Lasusa said the Hoyas’ growth and perseverance throughout the season culminated in the team’s dominant showing this weekend.

“What made me so happy about this weekend was that we really just put everything all together,” Lasusa told The Hoya. “We really dug deep in all those ups and downs that we’ve had throughout the year. They made us a lot better, and we came out this past week and did exactly what we had to do.”

Georgetown has steadily climbed the CSA Championships’ tier system, which is segmented by regular season rankings. After finishing as the runner-ups in the D and C divisions in the past two seasons, the Hoyas faced a formidable slate of games in the B division Kurtz Cup this year.

“I like to equate it to the NIT for basketball,” Lasusa explained.

The Hoyas had played all three playoff opponents in the regular season, defeating the Polar Bears and losing narrowly to the Herons and the Ephs.

Senior captain Caroline Wilcox said the previous matches helped the team lock in on building a strong collective mentality for the tournament.

“Squash is a super mental sport,” Wilcox told The Hoya. “Approaching nationals, we really focused on, ‘We know that we can play really good squash,’ so just making sure that we’re so locked in when approaching every match.”

Graduate students Jesse Brownell and Brianna Jefferson, transfers from Dartmouth and Yale, respectively, formed a formidable one-two punch atop the lineup, while first-years Aaru Kuthari, Ella Schoonmaker, Lindsay Lee and Mary Kacergis occupied the No. 3 through 6 positions. Sophomores Katie Hennessy and Sydney Bramen, along with Wilcox, rounded out the squad.

Wilcox, the only senior and remaining member from the inaugural squad in the 2021-22 season, said the team quickly developed a tight-knit community despite six of the nine starters being new arrivals to the program.

“We became really close as a team,” Wilcox said. “In the beginning, it’s always hard to set the new dynamics, and it’s a completely different team than it was last year.”

“Everybody was eager to learn, and everybody was eager to get better,” Lasusa added. “So it’s important when you have a team come together and work really well with each other, because they can be there for each other and have each other’s backs in any moment.”

Georgetown’s cohesiveness immediately shined in the first matchup of the tournament against Bowdoin. After narrowly losing the first game of the set, Brownell rallied back 11-8, 11-6 and 11-5 to capture the win. From that point on, the Hoyas won their next 24 consecutive games to earn the clean 9-0 sweep.

William Smith, too, proved no match for the Hoyas. A tight 3-2 victory for Brownell set the stage for a 3-0 win by Jefferson and 3-1 wins by Kuthari and Schoonmaker. Lee, Kacergis, Hennessy, Bramen and Wilcox proceeded to sweep their sets for Georgetown’s second 9-0 match victory.

“From a coach’s standpoint, that was the best mentally I had seen us the entire year, just throughout the weekend,” Lasusa said. “I think that allowed each person to get the best out of themselves and be able to play the best squash that they could.”

The finals, ultimately, were no different. The Hoyas won 24 games to the Ephs’ 11 for a 7-2 win to hoist the trophy.

Ultimately, the goal is to continue building toward a national championship via recruiting and investment pathways — but for now, Georgetown can celebrate its accomplishments, transforming a club team into a legitimate contender in just three short years.

“Everyone is so committed to the Georgetown squash community,” Wilcox said. “The way squash has grown, how dedicated people are to this team even though everyone’s experience with it has been so different, that’s something I’m really excited to see in the future.”

“I couldn’t be happier,” Lasusa said. “I just think about the people that we’ve had so far, both from the beginning and end. For me, it’s about the group that we have and the community that we build. That, to me, is the most important part.”

“This was just a really awesome weekend, and I think it’s just an indication of more to come.”

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About the Contributor
Oliver Ni
Oliver Ni, Senior Sports Editor
Oliver Ni is a sophomore in the SFS from Bolingbrook, Ill., studying science, technology and international affairs with a minor in mathematics. He was a proud member of the seventh lowest-ranked high school baseball team in Illinois. [email protected]
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