Women’s squash places12th at nationals

March 2, 2016 by Nicole Feshbach

Women’s squash (14-12, 9-1 in the NESCAC) fell on Sunday to Brown in the third place matchup in the playoff round of the Kurtz Cup after losing to Dartmouth 7-2 on Saturday and winning against George Washington 6-3 on Friday. These games solidified the Ephs’ ranking at No. 12 in the country.

In the match against Brown, players followed the three court system, starting with Caro-line Hogan ’18, Ellen Coombe ’17 and co-captain Nicole Feshbach ’16. Hogan and Coombe fought hard against tough opponents, and although Coombe took her opponent to a tie breaker, both eventually fell 3-0. Feshbach, playing in her last match of her senior season, came back from a 2-1 deficit to win in a spectacular five game match, making the overall score 2-1 to Brown.

Next on court were Charlotte Walsh ’17, Esther Baek ’19 and Hayley Parsons ’18. Baek fell in three games and Walsh took her opponent to five games, but eventually fell 3-2. Parsons dominated throughout her match, defeating her opponent in three decisive games.

Last on court were co-captain Lily Grant ’16, Ananya Mahalingam-Dhingra ’18 and Nicole Friedman ’18. Mahalingam-Dhingra fell to her opponent in three games, while Grant fought to come back from a 2-0 deficit. Grant managed to get a game off her opponent, and despite fighting for every point, lost 3-1. Friedman started out strong against a very tough opponent, getting a 2-0 lead, but eventually fell in five extremely close games, making the overall score 7-2 for Brown.

“Against Brown, we came out flat,” Head Coach Zafi Levy ’01 said. “We did not play to our potential. It might be physical or mental fatigue but we just played below our standards, which was disappointing.”

On Saturday, Williams fell 7-2 against Dartmouth. Coombe, Hogan and Feshbach all lost to their opponents in the first round.  Next, Walsh and Parsons both dominated their opponents in three games, while Baek fell in three games with two tiebreakers. Grant, Mahalingam-Dhingra and Friedman all lost to their opponents in this last round.

“Against Dartmouth, we simply came short in some key matches,” Levy said. “We lost in five games at number nine, seven, three and one. Although I was disappointed with the loss, I was very pleased with the way the team played.”

On Friday, Williams defeated George Washington 6-3 in the quarterfinals. Williams had previously played George Washington earlier in the season, defeating them 7-2.

Hogan fought hard, winning a game against her opponent, but eventually fell in four close games. Coombe, despite losing her second game, stayed strong and defeated her opponent 3-1. Feshbach followed her example, only dropping the first game 13-15, to eventually win in four games and make the score 2-1 for the Ephs.

Walsh and Baek were both dominant throughout their matches, playing excellent squash to defeat their opponents in three games. Parsons fought hard against an excellent player, but eventually fell in three, making the overall match score 4-2 to the Ephs.

Friedman also faced a very skilled player and played an excellent game, despite losing in three games, making the score 4-3 for the Ephs. Grant and Mahalingam-Dhingra both came back from deficits to win their matches, Grant coming back from 1-0 down and Mahalingam-Dhingra gaining momentum after being down 2-0. Their wins secured the final points for the Ephs, making the overall score 6-3 to Williams.

“The match [against George Washington] was fantastic,” Levy said. “Our women played so hard and beat the winner of the Kurtz Cup last year. The women competed so hard, had some great wins and most importantly, improved their standard of play. Grant and Feshbach were amazing leaders this year, and I give them a lot of credit for this successful season.”

The team graduates Feshbach and Grant this season.

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