On Thursday, October 10, Agnes Irwin Director of Squash Alex Stait was recognized by US Squash as the United States Olympic Committee National Coach of the Year.
US Squash recognized Stait and his accomplishments at the 2019 FS Investments U.S. Open Squash Championships, held at Drexel University's Daskalakis Athletics Center.
Stait was recognized for his team and player achievements on multiple fronts. In 2018, Coach Stait led Agnes Irwin to their first league title since 1995 and in the last two seasons he has guided the Owls to second-place finishes at the High School Nationals. His team also won the league title in 2019 and captured the Mid-Atlantic Squash Association Championship. Stait is also Team USA’s junior men’s head coach. He served as the assistant coach from 2015 to 2017 before becoming the head coach. At the 2018 Men’s World Junior Team Championships in Chennai, India, the team was seeded eighth but reached the semis to finish third. It was the second time in Team USA history that a men’s junior team medaled at the tournament.
Surrounded by dozens of Agnes Irwin student-athletes, families, alumnae, and staff, Stait thanked his family, the Agnes Irwin squash community, and Merion Cricket Club. A former player on the pro tour, Stait reached his highest ranking at #53 and has built on his impressive playing career as an accomplished and respected coach.
Since 1998, the USOPC National Coach of the Year has honored the best squash coaches at the highest levels of the game. Last year’s honoree was Mike Way of Harvard.
Agnes Irwin Athletic Director Courtney Lubbe commented "Alex is a phenomenal coach and an even better person. To see US Squash recognize his accomplishments is a great tribute to his success in the game. Alex is a strong tactician and skilled teacher, but his greatest gift lies in his ability to relate to his players and building a team culture in a traditionally individual sport. We are thrilled to support Alex on this recognition and so proud of all that his teams at Agnes Irwin and US Squash have accomplished."