Sports

Bruno men’s, women’s teams head into post-season play

Despite rescheduling due to Nemo, squash splits its Ivy matches and celebrates the outgoing seniors

By
Sports Editor
Tuesday, February 12, 2013

In a weekend full of unexpected twists, the men’s and women’s squash teams were able to halt losing streaks in the Ivy League heading into the postseason. The No. 17 men’s team (8-9, Ivy League 1-6) and No. 9 women’s team (12-6, 2-5) both fell to the visiting teams from Harvard but were victorious at Dartmouth later in the weekend.

The Bears’ final home match was moved up a day due to impending blizzard conditions, but despite the change, Harvard could not be stopped. The No. 3 ranked Crimson men’s squad (14-1, 5-1) took every game against the Bears in what resulted in a 9-0 victory.

Three Bruno players were each able to push a game into overtime — Blake Reinson ’14 at No. 1, Eamon O’Connor ’13 at No. 3 and Michael Snower ’16 at No. 6 — with Reinson’s match against the top-ranked player in men’s college squash, Harvard’s Ali Farg.

“It’s a bit of a treat getting to play against the top players,” Reinson said, who are “sometimes (the) top 40 or 50 players in the world.”

Seemingly poised to take the first game of the match after seizing a commanding 6-1 lead, Reinson was unable to maintain his momentum.

“It would have been pretty cool to win a game against a top player,” Reinson said. “But I don’t have any regrets.”

The women’s team did not fare much better against the second-ranked Harvard team (11-1, 5-1). Lydia Smith ’13 claimed the team’s lone game of the day in the No. 9 match.

But the loss did not dim the celebration of Senior Day — the last match to be played in the Pizzitola Center for the seniors.

O’Connor, Alex Hsu ’13 and Chris Holter ’13 were honored from the men’s team, along with the women’s five outgoing seniors — Smith, co-captain Sarah Crosky ’13, Sarah Beresford ’13, Kyla Harrington ’13 and Antonia Libassi ’13.

“(Senior Day) seemed so far away when I was a freshman,”  Crosky said. “Then suddenly I was standing there, after four years having gone by so quickly.”

The weekend took a turn as the teams showed up in North Hanover to compete against the highly-ranked Dartmouth squads. After warming up to play the match, a number of both the men’s and women’s Dartmouth players were held out of play by their coach because they had violated the team’s rules.

Enough players were defaulted by both the men’s team (7-8, 2-5) and women’s team (6-8, 1-6) that the Brown men’s team won automatically, and the women’s team only had to win one match. The women were able to take their match quickly as Sarah Domenick ’14, Crosky and Katherine Elliot-Moskwa ’15 all scored a point for Brown, with a final tally of 7-2, four points coming from defaulted matches. The men’s squad dropped its three matches played by Reinson, Oliver Boothe ’16 and Jack Blasberg ’16, but still came away with a 6-3 victory.

“Honestly it was so shocking,” Crosky said. “Their whole team didn’t really expect that to happen either.”

The win against Dartmouth — with both the men’s and women’s teams ranked No. 8 — was the first for the men’s squad in the Ivy League. The match was pivotal for both teams in securing high rankings for the College Squash Association Team Championships.

The victory against the highly-ranked Big Green squads will likely propel each team into a higher tier for the CSA Championships. The women’s squad, if ranked in the top eight, will play for the Howe Cup, awarded to the top team in the NCAA. The men will contend for the Hoehn Cup, assuming they have a final ranking of higher than 16.

“The guys were pretty pumped that we have a chance to get back into the top 16 and get into the top level of nationals,” Reinson said.

“We’re very happy to be in the (top eight)— where we haven’t been in a few years,” said co-captain Dori Rahbar ’14. “We finished one spot away last year, but it’s a huge leap in competition and it’s a huge honor to be included.”

The teams will be practicing in the lead-up to their respective tournaments, both of which will be played at Yale this year. The women’s tournament will last from Feb. 15-17 and the men’s tournament will follow the next week, Feb. 22-24.

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