Fouts and Wiser Earn Top Honors at Junior Nationals

Caroline Fouts ended her illustrious junior squash career with her third consecutive U19 national title, while Rustin Wiser won his first national title in any age group in a surprise title run Sunday, March 17, at the Arlen Specter US Squash Center in Philadelphia.

Nearly 300 of the nation’s top juniors competed across U11, U13, U15, U17 and U19 age divisions. View all results on the Junior Nationals Tournament Page. Tournament photography is available on the US Squash Smugmug page. Live stream replays will be available on the US Squash YouTube Channel on Monday, March 18.

Fouts and Riya Navani–the DeRoy Sportsmanship Award co-honorees and GU19 top seeds–set up a rematch of their 2023 U.S. Junior Open final. Like the U.S. Junior Open final, top-seeded Fouts took the match in three games 11-9, 11-4, 11-3.

In winning three consecutive GU19 national titles, Fouts joins the likes of Marina Stefanoni, Sabrina Sobhy, Lily Lorenzen, Louisa Hall and Alicia McConnell.

“I wouldn’t want to end my junior career any other way,” Fouts said. “It’s been such a great junior career with plenty of ups and downs, but at the end of the day ending it playing against a good friend on this court at this venue–it’s just so special. I’m sad it’s over but it was a great way to go out. Being able to share the DeRoy Sportsmanship Award with Riya was really special because we’re both trying to do something great in the sport and progress beyond junior tournaments to play professionally.”

Both Fouts, world No. 66, and Navani, world No. 89, will pursue both college and professional squash as they mark the end of their junior careers. Fouts will attend Harvard in the fall, and Navani will attend Stanford.

“Riya’s a great competitor and friend and who’s supporting me and pushing me,” Fouts said. “Even though we have to play each other, we know that when we do play each other it’s fair and it’s our best squash. I’m really thankful for the community that has supported me throughout the entire junior squash journey–LB Squash, all my coaches and US Squash for holding these great events and motivating the junior community to play at a high level and beyond juniors.”

A new name will be added to the Junior Nationals champions list in Rustin Wiser, who produced the best squash of his junior career to win the BU19 title. The top two seeds were both upset in the semifinals by three seed Wiser, who defeated two seed Zane Patel, while four seed and 2023 BU17 champion Alex Dartnell took out defending champion and top seed Rishi Srivastava. In the final, Wiser won a crucial first game 16-14 and went on to clinch the title in three games 11-5, 11-9.

Wiser, who plays for the Bronxville public high school program, will attend Penn in the fall, while Dartnell will return to the Junior Nationals in 2025.

“It’s amazing, I can’t really describe it,” Wiser said. “I worked so hard for this and I’m glad it paid off. This weekend went the best way it possibly could, I just went out and played and it went my way. I’m just super ecstatic. It’s been an amazing junior squash career for me. I just went out there and had fun. There were plenty of ups and downs, but this is a good way to end it.”

Jack Elriani joined Fouts as the only repeat champion after successfully defending his BU17 title against two seed Hart Robertson in the final—marking his third National Juniors title in all age groups. Top seed Dixon Hill won her first GU17 title without dropping a game, defeating 2023 GU15 champion Riya Shankaran in the final. Hill adds to her 2021 and 2022 Junior Nationals GU15 titles.

The three Sze sisters from Wellesley, Massachusetts produced two champions and three top-three finishes. Charlotte Sze, the GU15 two seed, defeated top seed Reghan McLaughlin in a close final 12-10, 11-8, 9-11, 11-5, to add to her 2021 and 2022 GU13 titles. Vivienne Sze, the GU13 top seed, also earned her third Junior Nationals title and first in the U13 age division, defeating two seed Makaela Cassidy in the final. Juliette Sze, the GU11 five seed, went two better with a third place finish.

Connecticut produced national champions in both the BU15 and BU13 divisions. BU15 top seed Brendan Tagliarini earned his first junior national title without dropping a game all tournament, defeating surprise finalist and seven seed Jacob Price in the final. BU13 top seed Reed Goulding added to his 2022 BU11 national title with a four-game final win against three seed Whit Robertson.

California’s Megha Ravichandran won one of the closest finals of the tournament against three seed Alice Wang, fulfilling her top seeding 12-10, 11-6, 9-11, 13-11. BU11 top seed  Anderson “Pugs” Morgan earned his first national title against two seed Arhaan Barboza in a four game final.

US Squash thanks Valuation Research Corporation for being a supporting sponsor of the 2024 U.S. Junior Squash Championships.