The Williams Women’s squash team captured the Division II national title two weekends ago when they traveled to Harvard for the end of season tournament. The team started the weekend with an easy 9-0 win over Colby on Friday. Commented freshman Selma Kikic ’02, “the Colby win was really important because it gave us confidence and set the tone for the rest of the weekend.”
Saturday morning, the Ephs faced rival Amherst, who had defeated them 6-3 in the regular season. This proved to be perhaps the most exciting match of the weekend, as the Ephs defeated the Jeffs 5-4 for the first time since 1994. Amanda Winklevoss ’01 played an exceptional match, securing a win for the number four spot in a hard-fought five games. Johanna Kolodny ’01, in the number five position, also pulled through with a big win for the Ephs, defeating her opponent in three games. Despite losses in the first, second, third, and ninth positions, the Ephs pulled out wins from number six Kikic, number seven Alex Nimetz ’99, and number eight Kathryn Dingman ’01. Commented Kolodny, “It was a thrilling match. We really wanted this one, and it was very evident in the intensity of our play.”
The Ephs met Bowdoin College in the finals of the tournament on Sunday. The regular season match had been a close one, with Williams narrowly defeating Bowdoin 5-4. Williams came out strong and pulled through with another hard-fought victory. Katherine French ’02 crushed the number three player from Bowdoin, letting up only three points in a quick three-game match. Despite her five-game loss, Williams co-captain Mimi Bartow ’99 played an especially strong match with intensity that, according to Coach Julie Greenwood, “brought her game to a new level.” Co-captain Nina Howell ’99 also put forth great effort against top-ranked Dana Betts from Bowdoin in the last intercollegiate match of her career. After subsequent losses by Nimetz and Dingman to Bowdoin’s number seven and eight, Williams took the match, with wins by Winklevoss, Kolodny, Kikic, and Berylson in the number four, five, six, and nine spots.
The tournament win put the Ephs in ninth place in the overall national rankings. “It was an exciting way to end the season,” commented Coach Greenwood. “They were a relatively young team, but I think that their combination of hard work, athleticism, and strong leadership is what brought it all together for them in the end.”
The Ephs will lose seniors Howell, Bartow, and Nimetz to graduation this spring. The squad looks forward to another strong season next year under the leadership of returning Junior Meghan Doherty.