February 23, 2006

Yale Heads To Cambridge To Compete In Howe Cup

Feb. 23, 2006

NEW HAVEN, Conn. - After last night's tough loss to Harvard, the Yale women's squash team is looking for redemption this weekend when they play in the Howe Cup, the Collegiate Squash Association's Team Championship, in Cambridge, MA.

Despite losing several players from last year's team to graduation, Yale is on the verge of winning the Howe Cup for the third straight year. Catherine McLeod admitted that, though this year has been more difficult, the team has no intentions of backing down at this point.

"The fact that we're still competing after losing essentially the whole middle of our lineup says a lot about our team," she said. "We always knew [this year] was going to be harder. People have really stepped up."

Because of last night's match, Trinity has assumed the No. 1 seed for the tournament, and will play No. 8 Williams on Friday at 10:30. Yale defeated Trinity 5-4 in New Haven on Jan. 25, with Michelle Quibell, Miranda Ranieri and McLeod winning in the Nos. 1, 2 and 3 slots, respectively. Kate Rapisarda won a tight 3-2 match at No. 6, and Nicola Shiels won at No. 8.

Perhaps most compelling, though, is the possible rematch between Yale and Harvard in what would be a semifinal match in the tournament. If No. 2 Yale beats No. 7 Brown and No. 3 Harvard gets past No. 6 Dartmouth, the Bulldogs and Cantabs would face off for the second time in four days. Considering the tight 5-4 match on Wednesday and the fact that Yale has already beaten Trinity this season, the tournament is almost anyone's for the taking at this point, according to Associate Head Coach Gareth Webber.

Webber indicated that any one of the top five seeded teams in the tournament has a legitimate shot to take home the 2006 national title. After Trinity, Yale and Harvard, No. 4 Princeton, with its deep lineup, has also been strong this year. In Yale's 6-3 win over the Tigers on Feb. 4, Princeton's three wins came from Nos. 7, 8 and 9, and No. 8 Carly Grabowski has not lost a match in two years. Rounding out the top five is Penn, who Yale defeated 7-2 in its season opener on Sat., Dec. 3.

The Bulldogs, though, are still focused on the possible rematch with the Crimson.

"We literally lost [to Harvard] by about two points," Webber said. "It couldn't have been any closer, and it could have easily turned out differently. From a coach's point of view, you couldn't ask for anything more from this team. We're going to take the positives from it for this weekend."

McLeod echoed Webber's sentiments.

"I'm excited - I'm glad we'll get to play them again," she said. "On their court."

No. 2 Yale opens play tomorrow evening at 5:30 against No. 7 Brown.

Friday schedule:
No. 1 Trinity vs. No. 8 Williams - 10:00 a.m.
No. 2 Yale vs. No. 7 Brown - 5:30 p.m.
No. 3 Harvard vs. No. 6 Dartmouth - 3:00 p.m.
No. 4 Princeton vs. No. 5 Penn - 12:30 p.m.

Lineups:
No. 2 Yale (11-1, 5-1 Ivy)
1. Michelle Quibell
2. Miranda Ranieri
3. Catherine McLeod
4. Amy Gross
5. Lauren McCrery
6. Kate Rapisarda
7. Sarah Barenbaum
8. Nicola Shiels
9. Jessica Balderston
10. Elisabeth Hill

No. 1 Trinity (11-1)
1. Vaidehy Reddy
2. Larissa Stephenson
3. Lauren Polonich
4. Ashley Clackson
6. Anna Detter
7. Fernanda Rocha
8. Siobhan Knight
9. Margot Kearney
10. Kim Palterman

No. 3 Harvard (7-1, 6-0 Ivy)
1. Lily Lorentzen
2. Kyla Grigg
3. Jennifer Blumberg
4. Supryia Balsekar
5. Audrey Duboc
6. Lydia Williams
7. Allison Fast
8. Laura Delano
9. Elizabeth Berylson
10. Emily Stork

No. 4 Princeton (5-3, 4-2 Ivy)
1. Claire Rein-Weston
2. Casey Riley
3. Ali Pearson
3. Gen Lessard
4. Lena Neufeld
6. Marilla Hiltz
7. Margaret Kent
8. Carly Grabowski
9. Christina Fast
10. Aly Brady

No. 5 Penn (8-4, 3-3 Ivy)
1. Alisha Turner
2. Paula Pearson
3. Radhika Ahluwalia
4. Tara Chawla
5. Caitlin Russell
6. Lauralynn Drury
7. Emily Goodwin
8. Maggie Kempner
9. Elizabeth Kern
10. Chloe Wynne

No. 6 Dartmouth (9-4, 2-4 Ivy)
1. Ashley Malenchak
2. Julia Drury
3. Rebecca Loucks
4. Avery Eyre
5. Heather Lisle
6. Emilie Mackie
7. Jessica Vyrostko
8. Madeline Lurio
9. Jessica Tory
10. Frances Battin

No. 7 Brown (6-6, 1-5 Ivy)
1. Megan Cerullo
2. Erin Andrews
3. Minoo Fadaifard
4. Charlotte Steel
5. Breck Haynes
6. Zarah Rahman
7. Katie Lew
8. Jennifer Neff
9. Nathalie Pierrepont
10. Courtney Quick

No. 8 Williams (5-7)
1. Ashley Eyre
2. Kate Whipple
3. Caite Warner
4. Jaye Gregory
5. Arianna Kourides
6. Clair Hsu
7. Lizzi Reifenheiser
8. Holly Houghton
9. Allie Rottkamp
10. Emily Gladden

Schedule and lineups subject to change. For updated results and lineups, visit collegesquash.org.

Report filed by David Sherfinski '08, Yale Sports Publicity

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