Preparing Boys for Life

Announcing "Squash, A History of Excellence" by James Zug '87

Since its inception more than a century ago, The Haverford School's squash program has been the best in the country. It has garnered more Inter-Ac school titles than any other school.The legacy of this storied program is now memorialized in Squash, A History of Excellence by James Zug ’87.

“I've loved working on this project for the past three years," said Zug. "It was fascinating to read through more than a century's worth of the Haligoluk, The Index, and Haverford School Today; these publications wonderfully document our history in the moment, whether with an eyewitness account of the sinking of the Titanic or what it was like when Ryan Gym opened. I felt a bit sheepish reading what I wrote in The Index in the mid-1980s, but Mr. Bergh was generous and these pieces did, however poorly, launch my writing career."

The coffee-table style book contains nearly 200 pages of engaging photographs and rich storytelling. Some of the great names from the past – Sargent, Vehslage, Howe, Mellor, Edwards, McFarland, Clothier, Ball, Ford, and Hughes – are included, as well as key matches, the rivalry with EA, the TOC, the tournament at Choate, and now the National High Schools. In the appendix, the results of every Haverford dual match, over 91 seasons, are listed.

“The best part was sitting down and talking with so many people from the program," he said. "I got to connect with alums, coaches, staff, faculty, and parents from all nine full decades of Haverford squash. I got to talk with former headmasters, former coaches and teammates of mine, and many, many men and women who have made Haverford squash so special.

"Haverford squash is a vibrant community. We finally have a tangible, portable and accessible book that beautifully commemorates this community.”

The book will be released at a celebration at Haverford on Saturday, Dec. 21. Orders can be placed at haverford.org/squashbook.

James Zug '87 started his writing career as a writer and editor of The Index. An award-winning freelance journalist, he's written a half dozen books and appeared in numerous national magazines and newspapers. He also has a monthly podcast devoted to squash: Outside The Glass.