NCSRA Board Meeting

Monday, March 13, SCLA, 6:53-9:30 PM


In attendance:  Ghirma Meres, Pres.; Hunt Richardson, VP-Tournaments; Brian O'Hora, VP-Juniors; Bill Fenton, Sec.; Rod Barnes, web editor; John Eisaman, Sports Club/LA; Wendy Lawrence, Results; Chris von Huth, YMCA; Maj Madan


Old Business


1.  Approved minutes of Feb. 16th meeting. 


2.  Tournaments Report.  Hunt reported that the Potomac Fever had 85 entries.  Next up is a junior silver event to be played at Episcopal H.S., March 24-26.  Also, a women's pro event (WISPA) has been added to the calendar for the last weekend in May.  Natalie Grainger is the driving force behind the event.  She has already raised the $15,000 prize money from her tour sponsor, Harrow, and has arranged for WISPA Director Andrew Shelley to run the tournament on the glass court in Union Station.  Additional costs are estimated at $40,000-$50,000. 


3.  Juniors report.  Brian reported on the success of local players at the junior nationals.  David Canner is on the U.S. national team, but still has to compete for one of the six playing slots on the team that will go to the world championships.  Ghirma asked about junior memberships in NCSRA.  Wendy said she has stopped registering her school teams as a group, noting that, when teams register as groups, they go through USSRA Direct, bypassing NCSRA. 


4.  Womens report.  The last women's round-robin of the winter season is scheduled for Saturday, March 25th, at Sports Club/LA.  Bettina is working with John Eisaman to organize a women's draw for the Fisher Cup.  Bettina has announced her resignation as Women's VP, effective after the Fisher Cup. 


5.  Leagues report.  We are losing league coordinators in divisions 2 and 3, Bruce Simons-Morton and John Billings.  There was some discussion of who might replace them, but no conclusions or recommendations. 


6.  Web report.  Rod reported that moving SquashWars to the Rommark server will increase the monthly cost from $15 to $42.  Bill noted that this is a very modest for a web as large as SquashWars.  Although the costs have been much lower on our present server, the quality of service whenever we had problems was very poor.  The Board approved the server change.  Rod also discussed plans to exchange ratings data with USSRA RailStation.  He noted that our plan is to transfer data, not link directly to RailStation, because that would draw users away from our website. 


7.  No finance report was submitted. 


8.  Fisher Cup.  John Eisaman reported that invitations have been distributed and 30 acceptances have been received.  His goal is to complete the draws by the end of March.  His has notified coordinators regarding their court requirements.  Ghirma and Hunt agreed, on behalf of the University Club and Sports Club/LA, to host all the semi-finals and finals.  The Board agreed that John should authorize his site administrators for the first two rounds to spend money for refreshments and submit receipts for reimbursement. 


9.  Awards dinner.  Hunt reported an offer from the Singapore Bistro to host the annual NCSRA awards dinner for $10 per person, plus a cash bar.  The Board agreed that advance ticketing would be available at $10 per person, but on site ticketing would be priced at $15. 


New Business


The Board declined to change league eligibility skill limits at this time, but agreed to revisit that issue after the summer season, and agreed that league coordinators should be allowed to alter the team size for their individual leagues (e.g., 3-player teams in div. 5 or 6, where the number of teams is now too low for a viable league, or 5-player teams in div. 4 where we have a large number of teams). 


Rod reviewed his proposal for a Premier League.  He said the goal is to improve the quality of division 1 by converting it into a sponsored premier league that might draw spectators and inspire players in lower divisions.  One sponsor is already offering $3,000, half of which would cover the cost of a high-quality cup.  Other sponsorship money could cover catering at league matches.  Team sponsors could cover uniforms or pay players. 


Next meeting:  Tuesday, April 4, SCLA, 6:45 (NCSRA members welcome).