American Medal Haul at Pan Ams

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The American women who captured team gold (L-R): Natalie Grainger, Amanda Sobhy, Olivia Blatchford, and Sabrina Sobhy.

Team USA brought home eight medals from the Pan American Federation Cup in Buenos Aires, Argentina, September 1-9. The U.S. representatives were comprised of a mix of youth and experience, led by player-coaches and former professionals, Gilly Lane and Natalie Grainger, with four players 20-years-old or younger: Harvard junior and world No. 22 Amanda Sobhy; sixteen-year-old world No. 64 Sabrina Sobhy; world No. 57 Olivia Blatchford; in addition to University of Rochester sophomore Faraz Khan. The U.S. men also featured recent Princeton University graduate-turned- professional Todd Harrity, making his first competitive start since a hamstring injury that kept him out of June’s Men’s World Team Championships, and Squash Doubles Association professional Graham Bassett.

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Gilly Lane (R) captured the individual bronze after giving top-seeded Miguel Rodriguez a run for his money in the semifinals. Rodriguez went on to take the gold.

The tournament opened with individual play that saw the U.S. women get off to a hot start, sweeping the individual competition. Amanda Sobhy faced off against Grainger in the final, a rematch of the U.S. National Champion- ship final in which Grainger beat Sobhy. This time, the match and gold medal went to Sobhy with Grainger taking silver, while Blatchford earned bronze to make it an All-American medal sweep.

Lane captured the bronze medal in the men’s individuals after losing a hard-fought semifinal against world No. 16 Miguel Rodriguez of Colombia in three tight games, 12-14, 9-11, 7-11. Bassett was the only other U.S. player to compete in the men’s individuals, winning his first round match before falling to Guatemala’s Edwin Josue Enriquez Franco.

The women continued their success in doubles with Grainger and Sabrina Sobhy teaming up to defeat Mexico in the final. Lane faced Rodriguez a second time, as he paired with Amanda Sobhy in the final against the Colombian duo. The American pair took silver as they fell to the Colombian team in two close games, 10-11, 10-11.

The U.S. men and women added to their medal count in the team competition as the women topped their group and coasted to a gold finish, defeating Mexico 3-0 in the final. In total, the U.S. women brought home six medals—three of them gold.

After three wins in the “group of death,” the men’s run in team play ended in a tough 2-1 semifinal loss to Brazil. The deciding match between Todd Harrity and Robertino Pezzotta ended in a controversial call, deciding the 10-9 game in favor of Brazil to consign the U.S. to a bronze finish.

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