BVI Junior Squash players pick up trophies.

By BVI Squash Rackets Association

Junior BVI Squash team competed in the 2016 OECS Junior Squash tournament hosted in the BVI April 15 - 17. Photo: BVISRA

Junior BVI Squash team competed in the 2016 OECS Junior Squash tournament hosted in the BVI April 15 – 17. Photo: BVISRA

Some thrilling Junior squash was played over the weekend at the Tortola Sports Club. Juniors from Tortola battled it out with arch rival players from St. Vincent for OECS (Organization of Eastern Caribbean States) honors and also for prestigious places on the OECS Junior squash team which will head to Cayman in late July for the week-long Caribbean-wide Junior Squash Championships.

Games were fast and furious and provided fans with thrills and spills (literally in some matches) throughout the two day event.

Head coach and previous #10 Men’s Squash Player in the world, Joe Faragher-Kneipp was pleased with the results of BVI’s 12-strong team. He specifically mentioned his rookies, RJ Wong, Tai Thomas, Jake Hallet, Gethin Jones, Stephan Weyers and Lawton Green who played well throughout – “these kids continue to improve and I look forward to seeing them next year during this tournament with a full year of training in hand,” said Joe.

Kirstin Gordon lost a close match that went the full distance to 5 games against Jada Ross of St. Vincent in the U19 Girls Finals. “Her deft drop shot abandoned her in the final. Otherwise it could have just as easily been a 3 game victory sweep for Kirstin,” remarked one young fan.

Brooms were out in the U11 girls category as Darci Reich managed to defend her U11 title against new-comer, Nadira Morgan of St. Vincent in a 3-game sweep. “Her service game was solid and as consistent as a Steph Curry 3 pointer,” remarked one official. “If she was nervous, she did not show it!” Both girls displayed great sportsmanship with smiles throughout the final and, unsurprisingly, it was the St. Vincentian who managed to grab the Sportsmanship award for the tournament – an award that Darci had proudly won in St. Vincent in 2015.

The U11 boys bracket was a close affair also between two Cedar students with 2nd year squash player, Alex Fountain out-pacing Tai Thomas in a tough match that also left supporters talking about a strong future pipeline of squash players.

The U13 boys bracket saw fans torn between fan favorites, Luca Reich (defending champion) and Jasper Forte. The two Cedar boys are both part of the Squash Elective program at Cedar and managed to put on a terrific show for the fans with terrific shot making. Rallies consistently featured electrifying shots and left the fans gasping and cheering on several occasions. Games were close and saw both players displaying early nerves (perhaps as a result of the huge crowd on hand). It was veteran, Luca with steely nerves who managed to squeak out a much deserved win.

Prior to the tournament Luca spoke to sports journalists about Jasper’s continued improvement since last year’s tournament. “He is an up and coming player who will no doubt be a contender for future titles,” remarked Luca. “Without a doubt he is the most improved player in the BVI.”

Tournament officials agreed with his sentiments and awarded Jasper with the ‘Most Improved Squash Player’ award beating out several deserving contenders from both teams. It was Stephan Weyers that would bring home the third place trophy in this tough age group.

Leo Forte brought home a much deserved 3rd place trophy in the U17 boys bracket. His third place showing in the tournament a reflection of the tough competition and high standard of play in that bracket by the St. Vincent team. One of his competitors, Kai Bentick is seeded #2 in the Caribbean and won the U17 bracket.

One fan noted that “It is a function of the fact that Kai focuses his attention mainly on squash while Leo spends considerable time also playing his much loved football”.

Places for the OECS team were not announced at time of this press release. For anyone interested in learning the game of squash please contact Joe Kneipp at the Tortola Sports Club.

BVI brings home Junior OECS Squash Championship trophies and makes Junior OECS Team

JR OECS trophiesThe St Lucia Squash Association hosted the 2014 annual Junior OECS Squash Championships at the St Lucia Yacht Club, April 24 – 27, 2014. Approximately 35 competitors from St Vincent, the BVI, and St Lucia played matches in male and female categories in U11, U13, U15, U17, and U19 age groups.  All matches were played on a round robin basis with the U15 category being the most competitive in both boys and girls.

In the U11 category there were only two girls who both played their first OECS.  In second place was Brianna Findlay of BVI and in first place was St Lucia’s, Isabella Segovia.

In the U11 boys also playing their first OECS, were Joshua Devaux of St Lucia who placed third, second place went to Jlan McMaster of St Vincent and first place went to Luca Reich of the BVI.

In the girls U13, third place went to St Lucian, Isabella Segovia who played two divisions.  Second place went to Natalie Fay of the BVI and in first place was Giovanna Miller Alexander of St Vincent.

In the boys U13, third place went to Samuel Childs of the BVI, second place went to Rashid Constance of St Vincent and in first place was Kai Bentick also of St Vincent.

In the girls U15 there was a clear winner however, the technical team had to break the game results down to select a second and third place winner since three girls tied in both matches won and points won for the next few positions. Third place went to Lauryn Doyle of St Vincent, second place went to Emily Abrehart of the BVI, and first place went to Thandi Myers of St Vincent.

In boys U15, third place went to Tyler Segovia of St Lucia, second place went to Leo Forte of the BVI, and first place went to 12 year old, Kai Bentick of St Vincent, who not only played two divisions but won both divisions.

In U17 girls there was also a tie for third place but the eventual winner was Abayomi Maddox of the BVI.  Second place went to Derai Myers of St Vincent and first place went to Thandi Myers who not only played two divisions but also won both divisions.

The boys U17 was an all Vincentian winning slate with third place going to Akeem Constance, second place going to Geronimo Ross and first place to Jason Doyle.

There were no U19 female participants and in the male U19, third place went to Vincentian, Omari Wilson, second place to St Lucian Andre Segovia and first place went to 16 year old, Jason Doyle who played two divisions and won both.

The Junior OECS team is selected from the participants of the Junior OECS squash tournament.  This year the team will play in the Caribbean Squash Championships in Bermuda in July.

David Piper, President of the OECS Squash Association announced the team.  The boys will be represented by Vincentians, kai Bentick and Jason Doyle, Leo Forte of the BVI and Andre Segovia of St Lucia.  The girls will be represented by Vincentian sisters, Thandi and Derai Myers, and Abayomi Maddox and Kirsten Gordon of the BVI.

Following the matches on Sunday morning, the Association closed with a prize giving ceremony which started with a moment of silence in remembrance of the Association’s Vice President, Oliver Gobat who went missing over the weekend and is presumed to have died tragically. Gobat was also the island’s #2 player and was in intense training for a number of tournaments coming up over the next few months including OECS to be held in May in St Vincent and culminating with the Commonwealth Games this summer.

Exhibition highlights VI’s sports for Sochi 2014 and Glasgow 2014

BVI's half-pipe skier for Winter Olympic Fames Sochi 2014, Peter Adam Crook answers questions at the BVIOC's multi sport exhibition

BVI’s half-pipe skier for Winter Olympic Fames Sochi 2014, Peter Adam Crook answers questions at the BVIOC’s multi sport exhibition

The BVI Ski Association, the BVI Athletics Association, the BVI Swimming Association, and the BVI Squash Rackets Association presented their respective sports to a rapt audience at an interactive exhibition hosted by the BVI Olympic Committee at the Tortola Sports Club last Saturday. The morning event highlighted the upcoming Winter Olympic Games Sochi 2014, and the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games in which qualified athletes will represent the Virgin Islands.

Peter Adam Crook (Adam), who earlier last week was officially presented as the territory’s half-pipe skier for Sochi 2014, and Joe Chapman, squash player for the VI in Glasgow 2014 presented their respective sports in the glass-fronted squash courts to a public that previously had very little exposure to either half-pipe skiing or squash.
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