Blog Norcal News Tournaments Women

2018 Howe Cup

‘The Howe Cup is the United States’ largest squash event for women and an annual team championship tournament run by US Squash. The annual women’s five-person team tournament began in 1928 as an inter-city competition between New York, Philadelphia and Boston. It received the Howe Cup title in 1955 when Virginia Griggs of New York City donated a permanent trophy, the Howe Cup, named in honor of Margaret Howe and her twin daughters Peggy and Betty.’

This year the tournament was held in Philadelphia, with teams from across the country and Canada competing. Philadelphia native and founder of the Bay Area’s Squash Drive Lauren Patrizio Xaba played in the A division for one of the Philly teams, the Philly Tasteykates. The competition was fierce in the top division, with another home team, the Philly Phab Phive, ultimately taking the title.

Lauren Patrizio Xaba (back row third from the left) with her team.

The B division was an equally tight race, with Courtney Sabo at the helm of the Boasting Bellas. This all California team played spectacularly, and brought the title back home to the west coast. Congratulations to Courtney Sabo (Bay Club San Francisco), Juliet Lamont (the University Club), Sara Barrett (Bay Club San Francisco), Rohini Gupta (Bay Club San Francisco), and Emilie van der Hoorn (University California San Francisco) on a great win!

From left to right: Rohini Gupta, Emilie van der Hoorn, Courtney Sabo, Juliet Lamont, and Sarah Barrett.

Usually a strong team, this years California C team was plagued by injuries leading up to the tournament. Unable to field a full team Carrie Kahn and Kelly McKinley (both University California San Francisco) joined with several Canadian players to form the international Golden Canucks. Despite great games and tight matches, the team was knocked out in the quarter finals.

Carrie Kahn (left) and Kelly McKinley (second from the right) pose with their Canadian teammates.

Finally, the D division saw Amanda Chew (Bay Club San Francisco) play for the New York Scared Hitless. Though the name suggests otherwise the team was calm, collected, and made it all the way from the round of 32 to the quarter finals before loosing to Chicago, who ended up winning the division.

Amanda Chew (middle row right) and her extended NY squash family.

In addition to the tournament, the players were treated to an exhibition match between Olivia Fiechter and Olivia Blatchford-Clyne. Despite knowing each other since they were juniors in highschool this is the first time the Olivia’s have battled it out on the court. Fiechter had home court advantage, but Blatchford-Clyne’s experience and patience paid off with a 3-0 victory. The matches were followed by a brief Q and A session, during which we all gained some great tips and insights. Blatchford-Clyne stressed the importance of a good warmup while Fiechter focused on nutrition as key to her performance. When asked about pre-match routines, Blatchford-Clyne admitted to her love of long hot showers before a game to clear her head. Fiechter on the other hand prefers the more horizontal approach of napping. It was an inspiring way to start off the tournament, and everyone did a great job channeling their inner Olivia’s both on and off the court.

Olivia Fiechter (left) and Olivia Blatchford-Clyne (center).
Blog Norcal News Women

Women’s Squash Week at the San Francisco University Club

A huge thank you to Juliet Lamont and the University Club San Francisco for hosting a phenomenal Women’s Squash Week event on September 26. Players of all levels came to play and drill, supporting each other, the sport, and the growing community of female players in the Bay Area. Collage players faced off against beginners, while the youngest members were busy working on their racquet grip.

Blog Norcal News Tournaments Uncategorized Women

Women’s Team Tournament at the BCSF

Squash is a seminal component of many women’s social lives; in fact we call it the “Squash Sisterhood.” On Saturday, September 8, the Bay Club San Francisco hosted a friendly team tournament and social event that brought together women from the Norcal region for competition, catching up, and meeting new players. The group ranged from those of us who have been playing together for the past 12 years to newer participants who are recent college grads or new arrivals to SF. Squash provides an instant sense of community in today’s transient society, particularly in San Francisco. Over 40 women attended, including local female pros Lauren Patrizio, Aisling Blake, and Shirin Kaufman.

There were 8 teams, each comprised of an A,B,C, and D player. Congratulations to the winning team, with Izzy Weisman (Club Sport San Ramon), Courtney Sabo (Bay Club San Francisco), Amara Warren (Bay Club San Francisco) and Jessica Lanham (University California San Francisco) taking home bragging rights for the year.

]1 From left to right: Amara, Courtney, Izzy, and Jess

All divisions had a great roster, particularly the women’s D division which was oversubscribed to and had a round robin in conjunction with the team tournament. Armando Olguin has been working with many women in a Monday night clinic at the Bay Club San Francisco and the group of D players has grown as a result of his coaching and encouragement. Thank you to longtime player Jacinta Corbet for her work in organizing and helping out with the women’s D round robin!

Norcal Squash kindly provided water bottles and squash balls for the event and the Bay Club San Francisco provided the courts. There was a lot of energy and enthusiasm for continuing the tradition of a monthly women’s round robin, in addition to the annual women’s team tournament. Next months women’s round robin is hosted by Cathy Gregory at Stanford on October 13 at 2:00pm in Palo Alto. We anticipate that we will meet again in November at Oakwood Athletic Club in Lafayette, stay posted for more details and be sure to stay up to date on women’s squash events on Facebook.

By Carrie Kahn

Blog Norcal News

Women’s Leadership Luncheon: The Role of Sport in Professional Careers

Aisling Blake of Squash Zone and Lauren Xaba of Squash Drive are excited to host the Inaugural Bay Area Squash Women’s Leadership Luncheon on Friday, September 28th from 11:30am – 1:30pm. It will be a panel based discussion with lunch before, where they will explore the role of sport in a women’s professional career. We have some amazing panelist, including Courtney Sabo, co-founder at PadPiper, Berkeley Revenaugh, Independent Contractor and Sarah Jane Perry (current world no. 8 squash player).

Our aim is to donate proceeds to a scholarship fund for young girls (from SquashDrive and Squash On Track) to attend female enrichment camps during the summer. Click here to sign up: when you purchase a ticket a portion of it will be tax deductible and you will also get access to the afternoon session of matches at the Bay Club SF.

Best, Lauren and Aisling

Blog Norcal News Women

Women’s Squash Week 2018

Women’s Squash Week – Registration to host an event open now!

Every year Women’s Squash Week is a season opener to encourage women to get on court and play. We encourage every club, everywhere in the US (and beyond) to set up an event appropriate to their club in order to entice the women on court. We will help you promote your event and ask that you to send us photos and updates so that we can highlight all the activity across the country. Ideally, these WSW events will lead to sustained activity for the women at your club. WSW this year is scheduled for September 22-30.

If you would like to host an event please fill out this form here. This will help us to market all the activity and to build awareness in the community. We will also send out an email to all players that we know to register for your event. We ask that you have your women register so that we can track these players and follow up with them on further programs they may be interested in. Registration to participate in these programs will open up in August.

Of particular interest to us this year is to promote women’s and girl’s doubles. If you have a doubles court please think about how you can use this campaign to get more women playing.

There is plenty of activity nationally for women squash players. And we hope that these programs can help you at a local level to engage your female members. If you have any questions at all about women’s squash please let me know. It would be great to use these two initiatives to drive more women to the game that we all love.


Kim Clearkin
Vice President – Programs and Events
555 Eighth Avenue, Suite 1102 New York, NY 10018
Ph. 212 268 4090 | Dir. 646 507 5224 | Fax. 212 268 4091 | | @USSQUASH | @USOpenSquash | @WomensSquash