Squash displays individual strengths at CSAs

After achieving end-of-season national rankings of 10th and 12th, respectively, qualifying individuals representing the women’s and men’s squash teams traveled to Amherst on Friday and Saturday to compete in the College Squash Association (CSA) Individual Championships.

Kevin Chen ’15 played mature squash over the weekend, driving to Saturday’s round of 16 at the CSA Individual Championships.
Kevin Chen ’15 played mature squash over the weekend, driving to Saturday’s round of 16 at the CSA Individual Championships. - Todd Brenner, Executive Editor

Last weekend, the women took second place in the CSA Team Championship, while the men reached a fourth-place finish in the competition. Six women competed for Williams, while two from the men’s side represented the squad at Amherst.

The women sent their top six players to compete in the Holeran ‘B’ Division, a six-round draw that featured a nationwide selection of the best college players outside the top 32. Co-captain and team No. 1 Courtney Bogle ’12, competing in the final match of her college career, played alongside Alli Rubin ’13, Laura Henry ’13, Alyssa Northrop ’14, Caroline Sawin ’15 and Ellie O’Neill ’15. Shihui Mao of Yale won the championship title.

Two of the six women progressed through Friday’s play to compete on Saturday. Although O’Neill, Sawin and Northrop bowed out in the round of 64, each falling in three, Bogle and Rubin advanced on byes while Henry advanced in three. In the round of 32, Henry struggled against Abigail Jenkins of Middlebury, falling in a grueling five-game marathon despite a late comeback that tied the match at 2-2. Rubin had little difficulty against Brown’s Sarah Crosky, beating her in three despite a narrow 13-11 victory in the second. Bogle dispatched Columbia’s Alisha Maity with a three-game win.

The men sent their top two players, team No. 1 and co-captain Will Morris ’12 and team No. 2 Kevin Chen ’15, to the Molly ‘B’ Division. Trinity’s Vishrab Kotian won the championship title.

Both Morris and Chen advanced to the round of 32 on first-round byes on Friday. In his first match, Morris took on Drexel’s Justin Singh. Morris got off to a strong start with an 11-8 win in the first but struggled in the second, narrowly taking a 14-12 win. In the third, however, Singh came back to clench a 7-11 win. Morris closed out the win with an 11-4 victory in the fourth. Chen faced a tough opponent in Middlebury’s Valentin Quan, but walked away with a narrow 3-2 victory. Chen started strong with an 11-3 win but quickly fell behind 2-1, as Quan took the second and third 9-11 and 4-11, respectively. Chen, however, was resurgent in the final two games, taking them 11-3 and 11-4 respectively to register the win.

The remaining women were both forced out of the competition on Saturday. The round of 16 brought losses for both Rubin and Bogle, with Rubin falling in four to Trinity’s Robyn Hodgson and Bogle dropping in five to Yale’s Issey Norman-Ross.

In Saturday’s round of 16, Trinity’s Matthew Mackin overpowered Chen in a tough four-game match. The Eph got off to a slow start, falling behind 2-0 after 11-8 and 11-5 losses in the first and second, respectively. Despite rebounding to take the third 10-12, Chen ultimately fell in four.

Morris, however, saw victory in a close round of 16 match against Yale’s Neil Martin. Despite dropping the first game 7-11, Morris came back to take the second and third games 11-4 and 11-9, respectively. Martin rebounded to take the fourth 4-11, but Morris proved the stronger player, closing out the match with an 11-4 win in the fifth.

The marathon five-game match showed its effect on Morris in his quarterfinal match against George Washington’s Omar Sobhy. Despite his best efforts, Morris fell in the three games 11-6, 11-5 and 11-6.

For the men, Morris, Jared Zuckerman ’12, Aaron Seong ’12, Adnan Khan ’12 and co-captain Michael Pizzi ’12 will graduate this spring, leaving behind a strong roster from all three remaining class years. The women will graduate three: Bogle, co-captain Carolyn Kaemmer ’12 and Eliana Saltzman ’12. The trio will leave behind a strong lineup consisting primarily of juniors and first-years.

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