NEW YORK - Following Columbia's first varsity squash season coming to an end, the Lions' head coaches Kelsey Engman and Jacques Swanepoel recently returned to the court to compete at the 2011 U.S. SQUASH Skill Level Championships, and both coaches took home top honors. The tournament took place on April 29 and May 1 at the Meadow Mill Athletic Club in Baltimore, Md.
Both Engman and Swanepoel qualified for the tournament by being a winner or finalist in their division in one of seven Regional Skill Level Championships that took place earlier this season.
Engman topped Kim Palterman, a Baltimore club pro, to finish first in the Women's 5.0 draw. Engman dominated Palterman, winning in three straight games, 11-6, 11-2, 11-6 to claim top honors.
Swanepoel found himself pitted against Joe Russell in the Men's 6.0 Championship finals. The two had faced each other last year in the finals, and it was Russell that edged Swanepoel in a thrilling five game battle. But this year, it was all Swanepoel who defeated Russell 12-10, 11-3, 4-11, and 11-9 to win the title. Swanepoel advanced to the finals after defeating Adnan Gul 12-10, 11-1, 12-10 followed by an 11-0, 11-4, 11-2 win over Phillip Carbajal.