62nd Annual Cate Junior Open Recap
This weekend marked the 62nd annual Cate Junior Open tournament. 62 years…can you believe it!? Outside of the British Open, I would be hard-pressed to think of a longer running open squash tournament. It is the longest continuously running tournament in all of California.
This year at the Santa Barbara Athletic Club we hosted 16 students from Cate, 25 from the Santa Barbara area and another 10 or so who traveled from Southern and Northern California.
Cate lost 8 players to graduation last year, but two of those wily veterans, Jessica Liou and Ever Avery returned this year to run the tournament. They did so with the same finesse that carried them to the top of their squash games last year.
Most of Cate’s players this year had not touched a racquet prior to a few months ago and despite that, they stepped up and played with the fervor of Olympians. So fun to see, and a little on the wild side at times…next step is for them to harness that energy into the mindfulness of a chess player.
As the dust settled after two days and 100 matches only a few were left. Jenny Lee playing in the girls U17 final against a player from LA. And the Macfarlane brothers about to duel it out for 3rd and 4th in the biggest draw, the boys U17.
Jenny lost by 2 points in a nail-biting thriller. Her game has escalated multiple levels since this time last year… in technique and composure
Ian and Dylan set the stage for a rivalry that will keep us wondering every time they get on the court together. This time experience prevailed, but Dylan is relentless and Ian had to bring his A game to win.
Jenny Lee – runner-up in GU17 (Jenny also came in 3rd in the GU19)
Ian MacFarlane – 3rd place BU17
Dylan MacFarlane- 4th place BU17
Alex Kim – semi-finalist in BU15
Kate Bradley, Maddie Dennis and Katie Cheng played in the GU17
Brandon Man and Carlos Rosario played in BU15
Mark Huerta, Luca Kim, Kenneth Liou, Carter Melnick, Abhishek Suresh, Simon Parker, Stefan Suh
We have a rule when we play in tournaments. Any time you play another Cate player it is considered a challenge for the school ladder. Many of the Cate rookies seeing that there was years experience facing them from outsiders took that in stride and turned their focus on finding a higher ladder spot after the weekend.
Many many many thanks to Patty Macfarlane for driving players back and forth to the tournament. To Jessica and Ever for volunteering with such commitment, passion, and precision. And lastly and mostly to Terry Eagle, who made it all happen. He negotiated for the venue, purchased the prizes, organized the food, set up the draws and was present the entire time as a mentor for tournament directors, coaches, and players alike.