ACADEMIC INTEGRATION COMPETITIVE EXCELLENCE

IN DIVISION I ATHLETICS

 

Undefeated Women’s Squash Overpowers No. 5 Trinity, Advances to Howe Cup Championship

Co-captain Cece Cortes leads the No. 1 Crimson into tomorrow's Howe Cup championship against No. 2 Yale (photo courtesy Dale Walker).

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. –
 Another dominant victory has put the top-ranked Harvard women's squash team in a position they set their sights on at beginning of the season. The Crimson defeated No. 5 Trinity, 9-0, Saturday afternoon in a College Squash Association (CSA) national semifinal to advance to the Howe Cup championship match.

Harvard won its second consecutive match by a 9-0 score, after sweeping No. 8 Dartmouth in the national quarterfinal Friday.

The top seven players in the starting lineup for Harvard won with 3-0 clean sheets and the Crimson also received victories at No. 8 and No. 9 by 3-2 scores. Megan Murray played the most exciting contest of the afternoon, as the sophomore came back from a 2-1 deficit to beat Chanel Erasmus of Trinity, 3-2. Murray used a tiebreaker to win the fourth game, 13-11, and took the deciding fifth game, 11-9, in the No. 9 spot.

Amanda Sobhy and Sarah Mumanachit continued undefeated individual season for Harvard with wins at No. 1 and No. 7, respectively. Sohby swept Catalina Pelaez, 3-0 (11-8, 11-3, 11-4) and Mumanachit handled Andrea Echeverria, 3-0 (11-5, 11-6, 11-8).

Both Harvard co-captains also helped lead the Crimson to victory. Nirasha Guruge breezed past Ashley Tidman, 3-0 (11-6, 11-7, 11-8) at No. 3 and Cece Cortes dominated Jen Pelletier, 3-0 (11-3, 11-9, 13-11) in the No. 6 position.

Guruge, Cortes and the Crimson, which hopes to hoist the Howe Cup for the second time in three years, will take on No. 2 Yale in the final tomorrow at 1:30 p.m. at the Murr Center. The Bulldogs beat No. 3 Princeton, 7-2, in the semifinals. The Crimson leads the all-time series against Yale, 33-15, including a 5-4 win (recap) in New Haven, Conn., Feb. 12 to secure the Ivy League championship.

In recent years, the Howe Cup has ran through Harvard and Yale, as this will be the third consecutive season the Ancient Eight rivals matchup in the CSA Women's Team Championships. Harvard defeated Yale, 7-2, in the 2009-10 semifinals en route to a national title, before Yale avenged its defeat with a 5-4 win in last year's crowning match.
The Crimson has won 12 previous Howe Cup titles, second only to Princeton's 17, while Yale trails in third with seven championships.
Results
No. 1 Amanda Sobhy (H) def. Catalina Pelaez (T), 3-0: 11-8,11-3,11-4
No. 2 Laura Gemmell (H) def. Alicia Rodriquez (T), 3-0: 11-4,11-7,11-1
No. 3 Nirasha Guruge (H) def. Ashley Tidman (T), 3-0: 11-6,11-7,11-8
No. 4 Haley Mendez (H) def. Natalie Babjukova (T), 3-0: 11-5,11-1,11-4
No. 5 Cece Cortes (H) def. Jen Pelletier (T), 3-0: 11-3,11-9,13-11
No. 6 Natasha Kingshott (H) def. Robyn Hodgson (T), 3-0: 11-7,11-5,11-2
No. 7 Sarah Mumanachit (H) def. Andrea Echeverria (T), 3-0: 11-5,11-6,11-8
No. 8 Julianne Chu (H) def. Pamela Jimenez (T), 3-2: 11-8,11-5,6-11,6-11,11-8
No. 9 Megan Murray (H) def. Chanel Erasmus (T), 3-2: 11-6,9-11,7-11,13-11,11-9