By Anne Bello
Published Sep 18, 2009 at 7:00 AM ET; Updated Sep 20, 2009 at 4:42 PM ET

gwWashington, DC — While there’s been an active squash program at George Washington for years, the men’s team only gained varsity status during the 2002-2003 season. The team has finished in the top 30 ever since, closing out last season ranked 23rd. GW, a Division I school, awarded its first squash athletic scholarship to Omar Sobhy this year. With that change, the Colonials hope to move into the top twenty and start a new chapter in the history of GW men’s squash.

Sobhy is expected to play number 1 in the Colonials’ line-up, which only lost two players from the bottom of the ladder to graduation. The young squad will have five sophomores returning from last season, including last year’s number 1, Jose Calderon. Two other first-year players will join the team: Player Haynes, who should play in the top 5, and Sam Ehrlich, who will play between 5 and 8. Haynes and Sobhy spent the summer training in Cairo and so should be ready to make an impact right away.

The team, which will be led by captains Matt Grossman and Mike Bower, has plans for a training trip to Stanford in January. They will also continue to work with kids from DC Squash Academy, an urban youth squash program in Washington.

2008-2009 Season Recap

FINAL RANKING: 23rd
NATIONAL TEAM CHAMPIONSHIPS: 23rd; 7th in Summers Cup (C Division)

2009-2010 Season Preview

Returning Players from Team Championships: Jose Calderon ’12 (1); Matt Grossman ’10 (2); Matt Nelson-Teutsh ’11 (3) [might be JYA for 2009-2010]; Brad Feldman ’12 (4); Max Collins ’10 (5); Mike Bower ’11 (6); Mike Nair ’12 (7); Sam Moreno ’12 (9); Scott West ’12 (10)

Graduating Players from Team Championships: Brad Birenbaum (8) and Jeff DeSousa (11)

Additions for the 2009-2010 Roster:

  • Expected to play number 1: Omar Sobhy ’13
  • Expected to play in the top 5: Player Haynes ’13
  • Expected to play between 5 and 8: Sam Ehrlich ’13

Captains: Matt Grossman and Mike Bower

Team Goals: To earn a top 18 ranking and to have strong showings against top teams on schedule

Key Matches: Middlebury, Bates, Colby, Hamilton, and Denison

Stretch Matches: Williams, Brown, Dartmouth, and F&M

To read other team previews, please visit the 2009 – 2010 College Squash Preview Page.