Photo: PDS Upper School Winter Sports Award winners gathered for a group photo after the assembly. See our Flickr album of Winter Sports photo highlights for action shots of team season play!
For the second time this year, Upper School Athletic Director Tim Williams took to the podium at McAneny Theater to present seasonal sports highlights; this time, he hailed all of the PDS Winter Sports teams and recognized the PDS Winter Sports student athletic award winners. Although Upper School students groaned when assembly time expired and the much anticipated "highlight reel" slideshow was unable to be shown, they thoroughly enjoyed the sports recaps for each team and enthusiastically congratulated all of the award winners. Good sportsmanship all around!
Here's a summary:
Varsity Squash, 9-5
Coaches Awards: Rakesh Potluri '19, Dylan Sakaria '19
Varsity Award: Connor McIntyre '19
The squash team was a powerhouse in local competition this year, ending the season with 9 wins and only 5 loses. They managed to beat both Blair and Delbarton twice in the same season for the first time in program history. They also had key victories over Hun, Lawrenceville JV, Poly Prep JV and Princeton High School. At the end of the season, he team traveled to Hartford, Connecticut to participate in the National High School Championships where they had three victories in the round robin division.
Boys Varsity Basketball, 12-13
Coaches Awards: Jomar Meekins '20, Jimmy O'Connor '19
Varsity Award: Diggy Coit '19
This season the Boys Basketball team had huge wins over Solebury and Doane Academy, and three wins against Pennington. Midway through the season the Panthers were ranked third in the area and captured a number one seed in the State Prep B Playoffs. They were set to play Pennington for an unprecedented fourth time in a season. Unfortunately, in a tough scrap of a game, the Panthers fell short of capturing a berth into the championship game by just 3 points.
Girls Varsity Basketball, 2-19
Coaches Awards: Caroline Topping '21, Maggie Amaral '20
Varsity Award: Brooke Smukler '19
This season was filled with a great deal of improvement and growth. At the start of the season the team met to set goals and expectations that they hoped to achieve and withhold. The most important standard established was to cultivate a culture of respect and resilience. Some season highlights include traveling to Pennsylvania in the opening weekend for the Hill Tournament, the 1st Annual Holiday Shooting Olympics, Senior Night, and attending a Princeton women's basketball game.
Girls Varsity Hockey, 12-12
Coaches Awards: Brynn April '19, Flynn Gorman '19
Varsity Awards: Julie Patterson '19
The Girls Hockey team faced several injuries during the first half of the season and younger members rose to the challenge. The team was able to head into the end of the season playing their best hockey, hosting the WIHLMA playoffs and earning a spot in the Miran Division semifinal for a much-anticipated rematch with Holton-Arms. PDS got the win to advance to the championship game, but lost for a third time this season against a strong Rye Country Day team. This season also came with some major milestones for members of the Girls Hockey team, with sophomore goalie Jillian Wexler picking up her 1,000th save and senior captain Julie Patterson recording her 100th career point.
Boys Varsity Hockey, 14-12-1
Coaches Awards: Ty Eastman '19, Chip Hamlett '19
Harry Rulon-Miller '51 Varsity Award: Coby Auslander '19
This year the Boys Hockey team faced their most challenging schedule in the program's long history. The team, often battered, bruised and shorthanded, did an admirable job navigating its way to a very respectable 14-12-1 record and a third place finish in the Mid-Atlantic Hockey League. Notable wins came against MAHL foes, Portledge, Hun and LaSalle, as well as impressive efforts against a number of New England boarding schools. In all, the team played 11 games against boarding schools, as well as 6 of the top 10 teams in the state of New Jersey. The Panthers ended league play 3-2-1 and advanced to the league semi-finals. Coby Auslander earned a place as one of the school's all-time leading scorers, with impressive career totals of 52 goals & 71 assists for 123 career points.
Varsity Volleyball, 8-1
Coaches Awards: Eleanor Myers '19, Maggie Laughlin '19
Varsity Awards: Rachel Brennan '19
Under the strong leadership of their captain and five seniors, the Volleyball team had a phenomenal season. The squad was undefeated in the regular season and achieved their goal of returning to the championship game for the second year. In the final game, the Panthers battled back after initially falling behind, but ultimately lost to Shipley 2-3. However, this was still an incredible season, as the team delivered more wins in one season than any Varsity Volleyball team ever has at PDS.
Varsity Fencing Boys, 4-8; Girls, 2-9
Girls Coaches Awards: Annie Shi '22, Zoe Rivera '20
Boys Coaches Awards: Alex Frank '20, Kyle Ready '19
Varsity Awards: Jacob Tharayil '19, Nina Kanamaluru '19
Novice Coach Award- Elizabeth Lee '22
Novice Coach Award- William Foster '22
Under the able and energetic leadership of captains Jacob Tharayil and Nina Kanamaluru, the fencing team had its biggest influx of new fencers in years. The new fencers made substantial improvement as the Panthers faced a number of tough teams from schools with large and experienced squads. The team had a strong showing at Prep States, including a second place finish for the girls foil team, a third place finish for the boys sabre team, and a bronze medal for Ansh Kulkarni.
JV Boys Basketball
Coach Award- Tazee Mahjied '20
Coach Award- Connor Topping '22
JV Girls Basketball
Coach Award- Brooke Lauer '22
Coach Award- Lily Nyce '22
Boys JV Ice Hockey
Coach Award- Winn Anhut '19
Coach Award- Matt Kuenne '19
Coach Award- Cailyn Jones '22
Coach Award- Sophie Difazio '21