M. SQUASH | Elis breeze past No. 14 Midshipmen

Hywel Robinson ’13 plays a ball in the Bulldogs’ 8–1 loss against Trinity last Wednesday.
Hywel Robinson ’13 plays a ball in the Bulldogs’ 8–1 loss against Trinity last Wednesday. Photo by Katie Giaccone.

The men’s squash team recovered from its loss to No. 1 Trinity last Wednesday with a convincing win against No. 14 Navy this past weekend.

The No. 2 Elis (9–1, 3–0 Ivy) dominated the Midshipmen (19–6), sweeping six of their nine matches en route to an 8–1 victory Saturday in Annapolis, Md.

“Some of us were still tired from Trinity,” Sharyar Aziz ’10 said. “But we went in there with a lot of energy and took care of business.”

No. 9 Sam Haig ’13, No. 8 Mike Maruca ’11, No. 7 John Fulham ’11, No. 6 CJ Plimpton ’11, No. 4 Ryan Dowd ’12 and No. 2 captain Todd Ruth ’10 beat their opponents in straight sets, 3–0.

In the No. 1 position, Kenny Chan ’13 dropped his first match, 11–8, before coming back to win the last three games 11–9, 11–5 and 11–9.

Navy managed to take one match from the Elis in the No. 5 position, with Robby Berner ’12 falling to the Midshipmen’s Allan Lutz, 3–2. Brener’s opponent, who suffered injuries earlier this season, has played as high as No. 1 this season.

“Brener played well against a pretty strong opponent,” Aziz said. “He struggled at the end, but he’s had some huge wins for us earlier this season. We know this was a minor lapse and that he’s going to come through for the team against Princeton.”

Saturday’s match with Navy marked the end of the Bulldog’s non-Ivy play. The Elis will face Princeton on Jan. 30, Brown the weekend after, Columbia’s club team Feb. 10, and Harvard three days later before heading to the CSA Team Championships Feb. 19-21.

Yale is currently the highest ranked team in the Ivy League according to the latest rankings from the College Squash Association. Princeton (5–1, 2–0 Ivy), the Bulldog’s biggest threat on the road to the Ivy title, was recently named No. 4 in the nation, trailing behind Trinity, Yale and Rochester, respectively.

The Princeton match is so important, Rusty Feldman ’10 said, because it will be a very strong indicator of who will most likely be the Ivy League Champions. The Tigers’ lost earlier this season to Rochester, a team the Bulldogs beat 6–3 in December.

“We know that we can’t count on [Princeton’s] previous matches to predict what will happen when we play them,” Aziz said. “But, if we just put it all out there on Saturday, we should come away with a win.”

The Elis are confident about their chances against their remaining Ivy League foes.

“Harvard always play us tough,” Ruth said. “But we’re a lot more talented than them this year. Their number one is tough, but in all other positions, we’re the favorites.”

Aziz added, “Win or lose on Saturday, we’re going to approach Harvard and Brown the same. They’re weaker teams, but they are definitely not walkovers.”

At the CSA National Championships, the Bulldogs are hoping for a second chance against Trinity.

“The goal for the team is to get another shot at Trinity,” Ruth said. “We played them pretty tough last time, if we could get another chance — things could go differently.”

The Bulldogs step back on their court to tame the Tigers in Princeton, N.J., on Saturday, Jan. 30.

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