As the Canada Winter Games squash team prepares for battle next month, the next crop of players coming down the pipe were doing their thing at the Racquet Club.
The club played host to the 2019 NWT Junior Squash Championships this past weekend with a total of 21 players between the ages of six through 13 hitting the courts, said Jeff Hipfner, the club’s head squash pro.
“It was a two-day tournament, over the weekend with everyone playing about five matches each,” he said.
The players were split into either the A or B division, depending on skill level, and it was Carter Robertson, who will be on the Canada Winter Games boys team, who defeated Colton Tumoth to win that title with Loic Hipfner coming in third. Callum MacLean beat Sahal Malin for the B division crown with Hayden Murray ending up as the third-place finisher.
While most of the Canada Winter Games team wasn’t playing, that didn’t stop them from getting involved to get some practice time, said Hipfner.
“We had exhibition matches played by some of Canada Winter Games team members on both the Saturday and the Sunday with hopes of inspiring our up and coming kids,” he said.
Almost all of the tournament held in Yellowknife in recent years have been exclusively Yellowknife-based in terms of players but that changed this year. Four players from Fort Smith made the trip up the highway to play and Hipfner said it’s believed that it was a history-making event for the tournament.
“I think that is the first time we’ve had juniors from another community play in the tournament,” he said. “They’ve got a great program there of about 29 juniors led by Arthur Taylor. It was a fantastic experience for them to play what was, for some of them, their first matches ever.”
NWT Junior Squash Championships results
1st – Carter Robertson
2nd – Colton Tumoth
3rd – Loic Hipfner
1st – Callum MacLean
2nd – Sahal Malin
3rd – Hayden Murray
source: Racquet Club