Squash: “The most enjoyable sport on Earth…”

Mickey Feeney ’19

Senior Mickey Feeney and his fellow Spartans head into their final match of 2019

By Nicole Yeaton ’20

Just judging from his happy-go-lucky outward demeanor, you wouldn’t think that Mickey Feeney ’19 has such a serious side.

However, those who know him best, see him as a dedicated student, school president, and competitive squash player.

But why squash, in particular?

Feeney says squash is a demanding sport requires the perfect balance “of strength and finesse,” which draws in many prospective players.

In a recent interview, Feeney, a long-time player on the Lawrence Academy Varsity Squash Team, raved about the opportunity and experiences alongside his fellow Spartans.

“The culture of the LA squash team is what really drew me in,” he said. “The culture is one that is very fun, accepting, supportive, and at the same time competitive.”

This year, Lawrence Academy competed in the 2019 U.S. High School Team State Championships, where Mickey gushed about his experience.

In one word, he described the tournament as “electric.”

“The experience definitely boosted the enthusiasm and motivated the team to continue improving,” he said.

Overall, Mickey believes “squash is the single most enjoyable sport on Earth,” as he culminates his high school squash career tomorrow, Saturday, February 23, at Brooks School.

Good luck to Mickey and everyone on the squash squad at Brooks…

Emily Pratt ’16 Named CCC Women’s Basketball Player of the Year for Endicott College

Now the whole basketball world knows what everyone at Lawrence Academy ALWAYS knew – Emily Pratt ’16 is one heck of a player.

Yesterday, the Springfield, Massachusetts-based Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) named the Endicott College junior as its “Women’s Basketball Player of the Year.”

Endicott College Sports Information reported:

Emily Pratt ’16

With the announcement of today’s awards, Pratt is now the first student-athlete in women’s basketball program history to receive Player of the Year accolades since Ceciley Chisholm ’10 did so in 2009-10.

Pratt’s MVP-caliber year includes the following averages: 17.4 points per game (40.7 FG%, 34.6 3PT%, 74.5 FT%), 5.6 rebounds, 2.4 assists, 2.32 steals, and 0.48 blocks. Pratt currently ranks first in the conference in points (436), second in field goals made (145), steals (58), and points per 40 minutes (21.1), third in free throws made (102) and points per game (17.4), and fifth in three-point field goals made (44) and three-point field goal percentage (34.6).

Historically speaking, Pratt’s 436 points this season ranks ninth all-time in program history, while her 17.4 points per game are positioned fifth all-time. Pratt also ranks No. 12 on the all-time scoring list with 995 career points entering Thursday night’s CCC Tournament semifinal matchup…First-seeded Endicott (17-8, 13-3 CCC) will take on the winner of No. 5 Curry and No. 4 Roger Williams on Thursday, February 21 in the CCC Semifinals at a time to be determined later.

While with the Spartans, Pratt scored her 1000th point at TD Garden, becoming just the third Lawrence Academy girls’ basketball player to accomplish the feat.

As for this season, the CCC reported:

Pratt is the top-scorer on an Endicott team that will enter the CCC Women’s Basketball Championship as the top seed… Pratt had nine games of 20 or more points, with her season-high of 33 coming against Curry back in November. She was named the CCC Player of the Week three times (Weeks ending Dec. 2, Dec. 16, Jan. 20).

Congratulations and good luck to Emily!

Congratulations Emily!

Impressive Showing for Lawrence Academy Wrestling at Northern New England Tourney

Last weekend, LA Communications was pleased to get some outstanding news via texts from Wrestling Head Coach Michael Oakes, which we promptly posted on social media.

Amazing work by a team that showed their camaraderie when teammate Josh Arruda signed his NLI on Wednesday.

Congratulations wrestlers! Best wishes the rest of the way…

Lawrence Academy’s Josh Arruda ’19 Signs National Letter of Intent to Play Football for Merrimack College

Here’s the photo/social media breakdown of Lawrence Academy Spartans varsity football standout Josh Arruda signing his National Letter of Intent (NLI) to play football at Merrimack College.

Congratulations Josh! Best wishes at Merrimack…

Nikki Arnold ’19 Joins Lawrence Academy Girls’ Basketball’s 1000-Point Club

In a week that featured some outstanding athletic performances, it was a free throw that garnered much of our attention – and rightly so.

LA girls’ basketball v. Middlesex. Jon Chase photo

With her free-throw basket versus Middlesex School on Friday, February 6, varsity girls’ basketball captain Nikki Arnold ’19 (Derry, NH) joined illustrious company.

Arnold, set to join the varsity at Sacred Heart University next fall, inked her name next to LA Athletic Hall of Famer Kristi Laggis ’95, Emily Pratt ’16, Gabrielle Reuter ’16, and Erin Antosh ’17 in LA’s girls’ basketball 1000-point pantheon.

“It feels really good,” said a relieved Arnold, postgame.

“Personally, didn’t think I was going to make it,” added Nikki, sidelined by injury during parts of her senior season. “Getting it is like an accomplishment I thought I was never going to achieve.

“It feels really, really good to actually get to do it and be a part of the five people to actually do it here at LA.”

The highlight of the Spartans third-straight win helped raise the squad’s record to an impressive 12-3 overall. However, even in the aftermath of an important victory, Head Coach Donna Mastrangelo mused about Arnold’s technique, and didn’t sound very surprised her senior made the exclusive club.

“It’s a thrill for me to be honest,” said Mastrangelo, who generally wears a serious gaze. “It’s so much fun.

“I just get so excited watching her shoot,” added the coach. “It’s beautiful. It’s textbook.”

There’s clear admiration from the player’s side, as well.

“[Coach Mastrangelo’s] the reason I’m here in the first place,” said Arnold. “She recruited me from eighth grade and brought me in here to tour and everything and she’s developed me into the player I am over the past four years.

“I wouldn’t be here without her.”

But the season is far from over, and both Nikki and Coach are looking forward to challenging for some team accolades.

“I think we just need to keep playing hard on defense and keep our momentum,” said the senior. “If we play hard on defense, that usually translate into fast breaks and good layups and shots.

“Our defense is really our game and I think that this game wasn’t maybe our best defense, but we picked it up in the end and that’s what really want us to game.

“And I think if we can continue that will have a good shot this year.”

Coach Mastrangelo was a little more direct.

“We got through this game tonight,” she said. “It was not our prettiest performance, that’s for sure.

“And that’s a good thing to know that that was not our best performance; to know that we have to work harder if we really want to accomplish our goals.”