Photo courtesy of UR Athletics

The first time I wanted to play squash, I was five years old. I had watched my dad play in a squash tournament in Mexico City. He won the tournament, and since then, I played almost every day for four years until he started coaching me and I started competing. I won my first national tournament when I was nine, and since then, I have spent most of my time practicing.

2. How do you get pumped up before matches?

I do not have a special routine. I just try to focus on everything important that I need to do on the court, while I also concentrate on why I want to win so badly: the pain I went through practicing to get to this point in my squash career. That is what gives me the confidence and strength to face my opponent.

3. What is it like being on the only Division I team at a predominantly Division III school?

Being on the only Division I team at the University does not make a big difference to me. I am sure my experience would be different if squash were more popular. Also, I have seen other teams on this campus working hard and pushing themselves in their matches and competitions. In the end, we are all student athletes trying our best to succeed in school and sports.

4. How do you like being a part of such an international team?

Getting to know players from different countries is one of the things that I have liked most about being here at Rochester. Even though we are from different countries, it is pretty impressive to see how many things we have in common. This year, I am living with four of my teammates, and getting to know them better has been great.

5. How did it feel to beat the number one team in the nation for the second time this season?

Both wins were really exciting but especially the win versus Trinity – it was the first time that we beat them, and it was their first time losing this season. We had a couple of losses this past weekend, so I felt lucky to play the last match and get the win that we needed. I definitely feel that the team is motivated, ready to face our last three matches, and will be successful at nationals.

 6. What do you hope to achieve by the end of this season and why?

I have confidence that our team can win Team Nationals. I think individual nationals are going to be difficult, but I have been practicing hard so that I can do my best, and hopefully, along with my team, end up with a win.

7. Would you rather build a snowman with Zach Galifianakis or Amy Poehler? Why?

I would definitely build a snowman with Zach Galifianakis, who I know from movies, but not by name. He is so funny, and it would be a cool experience if I could share it with my girlfriend and friends.

Douglas is a member of the class of  2017.

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