MARCH 6 UPDATE: Following their 57-55 win over Kingswood Oxford School on March 1, boys 1st basketball faced Rivers School on March 4 in the semifinals and unfortunately came up short, losing 38-62. "I was unbelievably impressed with how hard our kids competed," said Head of School John Packard about the game in Chapel on Monday. "Our team performed against a really good team. I think they deserve a round of applause. The theme in all the games I saw this weekend was how incredibly hard our kids played, and it made me so proud."
Girls 1st basketball, meanwhile, rode the momentum of their 74-64 win over St. George's School on March 1 to another victory, 59-56 over Beaver Country Day School in the March 4 semifinals. "Winning two road tournament games to get to the championship is no small feat," Packard added on Monday, calling the girl basketball team's faceoff in the finals against St. Luke's School on March 5 an "incredibly exciting, exhilaring game." Although the squad battled their best to take home a third consecutive Class B Championship, they ultimately lost 52-61.
“The boys basketball team achieved something historic yesterday,” Head of School John Packard declared on Thursday. “…I’m pretty confident we’ve never been behind in a tournament game 22 to 2 – and won!”
“And that’s what they did yesterday,” he continued as the hush of the students and teachers gathered in Chapel broke out into cheering applause. “Congratulations to them.”
Congratulations are due, in fact, to four Brooks teams that have been competing in post-season tournaments during the past week. Following the squash squads’ stint at the U.S. High School Squash Championships last weekend, boys ice hockey and boys and girls basketball, competed Wednesday in the quarterfinals of the NEPSAC championships.
“The girls played hard, made several upsets and represented Brooks well,” squash coach Kihak Nam said after his team’s turn in Nationals, at which the boys team also competed, in Philadelphia at the University of Pennsylvania squash center. “They played some very competitive squash.”
In addition to moving up to Division III this season, the girls team faced a “particularly challenging” trip because their #4 player couldn’t compete with the group. Still, they started out strong.
On the first day of the tournament, they played against third seeded Darien Girls Varsity in the first round (of 16). “On paper, based on players' U.S. Squash ratings, Darien was supposed to dominate us, but our girls fought hard and outperformed themselves, beating players who were ranked higher than them,” said Nam. Ultimately, though, “unfortunately, we lost to Darien 3-4.”
In the quarterfinals of the first consolation, #14 seed Brooks played against #11 seed Hill School with only an hour of break after playing Darien. “Once again, our girls played hard and outperformed themselves, beating The Hill School 4-3,” said Nam. Throughout the rest of their rounds “Brooks’ girls stayed strong as a team and supported one another,” he added. “But fell short.”
The silver lining is that several alumni stopped by to cheer on the squad, including former Brooks squash players, Dane Kim '14, Melanie Pestana '20, Seif Abou Eleinen '14 and Gabe Yu '22.
BOYS ICE HOCKEY
Seeded seventh in the NEPSAC Boys Hockey Small School Piatelli/Simmons tournament, Brooks took on Holderness School in New Hampshire March 1.
Brooksians on campus had their back. Students rallied in the Keating Room to watch livestream of the game — as well as the other matchups happening at the exact same time in Connecticut (boys basketball) and in Rhode Island (girls basketball).
“While the boys did not get the result that they wanted,” Head of School Packard said yesterday, “[thockey team] represented the school beautifully and competed from start to finish. I congratulate them on a terrific season.”
It “just wasn’t our night,” assistant coach Ian Speliotis posted on social media sharing the final score and noting that the team was “downed by Holderness, 3-1.” He added a note of gratitude, too. “Thank you for a great season, boys. These memories will last a lifetime.”
As described above, fifth-seeded boys basketball’s Wednesday win — 57-55 — against Kingswood-Oxford School was a nail-biter.
The team’s momentum will continue as they advance to the semifinals tomorrow, March 4, when they’ll take on Rivers School in Weston, Mass. at 3:30 p.m.
Also continuing on in the NEPSAC tournament is seventh-seeded girls basketball, who won 74-64 vs. St. George’s School on Wednesday.
“This was our team's best effort all season,” said head coach Ben Chase said. “It was a true team win. We knew going into this one the tougher team would win and that challenged our players to up their effort … [and they] gave an incredible effort from start to finish.”
Calling out Kendall Eddy ’23 and Sophie Broussard ’25, who each scored 17 points, Chase commended the team’s offense. “The way our team shared the ball and worked together to create great shots was just awesome,” he said.
Noting that the squad’s “rebounding and defensive toughness stood out all night,” too, Chase said, “I couldn't be prouder of how our whole team played.”
Looking ahead to tomorrow’s semifinal against Beaver Country Day School in Chestnut Hill, Mass., at 2 p.m. Chase shared that “We're all very excited” for the weekend.
“We start off playing a very talented Beaver Country Day team in a rematch of one of our closest games of the regular season,” he said. “Our initial meeting was decided by a Kendall Eddy basket as time expired. Our team has grown a lot since that matchup a few weeks back, It should be a great game. If we can make some adjustment and match the intensity we brought on Wednesday, we'll give ourselves an opportunity to win. We're taking it one step at a time.”