A story of teammates, roommates, and friendship: Dana Santry and Nick Spizzirri of Penn males’s squash
Within the realm of collegiate sports activities, enemies and rivalries are quite common. Lifelong mates? More durable to come back by.
So, for the friendships that do exist, they usually lengthen past the taking part in area or court docket and turn into the spine of a person’s and staff’s success. For Penn males’s squash, the bond between seniors Dana Santry and Nick Spizzirri is just not solely a formidable drive on the court docket, but in addition a testomony to transcending the boundaries of competitors.
The 2 first met after they had been seven years outdated at a weekly tennis clinic of their hometown of Greenwich, Conn. They rapidly turned finest mates, as they attended the identical center college and performed on quite a few youth sports activities groups collectively.
From their early days as mates in Greenwich to their present senior marketing campaign at Penn, Santry and Spizzirri’s joint journey has been one marked by camaraderie, mutual help, and an unyielding ardour for the game they love.
It was Santry who first launched Spizzirri to squash. “Enjoying with somebody higher than me drove me to get higher myself,” Spizzirri remarked of Santry. From there, two youth careers blossomed aspect by aspect.
“Rising up, we had the identical coach for a very long time. I believe we performed (towards one another) 35 instances in organized junior tournaments,” Santry stated. “On the identical time, we had performed so many instances that we type of discovered tips on how to battle it out on the court docket, however have a separate relationship off the court docket unbiased of who gained or misplaced on a given day.”
After they had been each 17 years outdated, Spizzirri and Santry shared a typical purpose of creating the world junior staff, which might consist of 4 of the highest under-19 gamers chosen to go to Malaysia to signify the US on the World Junior Championships. “We had been competing for a typical purpose and it introduced us nearer collectively — not solely by way of play on the court docket, however simply the truth that we had been with one another a lot,” Spizzirri stated.
This friendship spilled into school when each gamers selected Penn for his or her collegiate careers.
“I believe coming in as freshmen, it was undoubtedly loads simpler to assimilate to the staff tradition with somebody that you just knew so properly coming in with you,” stated Spizzirri. They’ve lived collectively throughout their entire time at Penn, a scenario they’re fairly accustomed to. In highschool, the 2 would hang around at one another’s homes each day earlier than squash apply, and virtually acted like brothers.
Their chemistry, each on and off the court docket, has been a driving drive behind the staff’s camaraderie and success. This yr, whereas Spizzirri is taking part in within the two spot and Santry is recovering from harm, they’re each staff captains. The 2 shared this title of their senior yr at Brunswick as properly, and really feel the previous expertise will profit them throughout this season.
Whereas their journey at Penn has been marked by victories and private progress, it hasn’t been with out its challenges.
“For me, it’s at all times good to have somebody who you’re actually shut with to maintain you in good spirits when issues aren’t actually going your approach,” Santry stated of Spizzirri with regard to his restoration course of after struggling an harm earlier within the yr. “Particularly when (Spizzirri) is taking part in squash, he can look fairly offended on the court docket, however actually, he’s somebody I can at all times speak to. I’ve come to see that he’s simply so passionate concerning the sport.”
Because the senior season of their collegiate squash careers unfolds, Santry and Spizzirri are decided to make it one for the books. However in fact, finally, the solar will set on these nice collegiate careers, and maybe give method to a brand new chapter of friendship.
“I don’t see it being troublesome to remain in contact with Santry,” Spizzirri stated. “I imply, to be trustworthy, I most likely see us being roommates after school too.”