By Mitch Silver

Caroline Neave is Rye High’s best female squash player. She’s been the best for all four years of high school, playing No. 1 singles since her freshman year and captaining the Garnets in both her junior and senior years. She’s currently ranked fourth among the country’s girls in the Under-19 Division.

Caroline, who’s been accepted at Stanford, first earned All-American status in 2014. Last weekend she cemented her position by making the Elite Eight in singles for the second straight year at Nationals.

And now she’s earned the crowning honor of her scholastic career: The Rye Lions Club and the Rye High Athletic Department have jointly named Caroline Neave Rye’s Athlete of the Month for February.

“It’s an honor to receive this award,” she said. “I have my coaches to thank for helping me become the player I am: Rye Head Coach Tony Campbell, Lifetime Fitness Coach Mike Callaway, and my coaches at the Squash Club at Chelsea Piers in Stamford, Supreet Singh and Natalie Grainger.”

But Caroline might never have been eligible for the honor had her parents made a different decision when they bought their home on Canterbury Road behind the Greenwood Union Cemetery. Her mother Patti explained. “We’re about as close to Harrison Avenue here as we are to North Street. Our property straddles the school district line, and we were offered the choice of Rye or Harrison schools. We chose Rye.”

Harrison’s loss was definitely Rye’s gain. Not only is Caroline an outstanding athlete — she was an All-League middie in lacrosse for three years, and played competitive soccer, basketball, tennis and track growing up — she’s a National Honor Society member with a 99% GPA. The list of her Departmental Awards sounds like the school’s curriculum: English, Language & Composition, World and U.S. History, Algebra, Trigonometry, Calculus, and Spanish.

The award qualifies Caroline to join the other monthly winners in the race for Athlete of the Year, an honor that will be announced in June at a dinner hosted by the Rye Lions Club at The Osborn.

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