The men’s squash team bounced back from a loss to No. 1 Trinity last Wednesday with three straight victories at the Yale Round Robin.
The No. 2 (10–1, 3–0 Ivy) Bulldogs returned to the Brady Squash Center and easily defeated No. 9 Franklin and Marshall, 8–1, No. 4 Rochester, 7–2, and No. 15 Navy, 9–0.
“Obviously, the loss to Trinity was tough to take, but as a team, it’s important to keep your eye on the prize and adopt the same attitude for each match,” John Roberts ’12 said.
The Bulldogs went back to work on Friday against Franklin and Marshall. It quickly became apparent that the Bulldogs were the dominant team in the match, winning 8–1.
Their lone loss came when the Diplomats’ Gabriel De Melee upset Hywel Robinson ’13 at the No. 1 position. It was a long, grueling five-game battle with only a few points separating the two players throughout the match. Robinson eventually lost the thriller, 2–3.
“Everyone is just trying to improve individually and after playing so many matches, everyone knows what they need to be working on,” captain Naishadh Lalwani ’11 said. “Our primary focus is to make sure that we keep improving so we can peak for the national championships in a months time.”
On Saturday, the Elis next faced Rochester, a team that the Bulldogs have historically had close battles with in previous matches, according to Lalwani. Two years ago, the Elis beat the Yellowjackets 5–4, and defeated them again the following season 6–3. This time Yale went another step further, taking the match 7–2.
The last match to finish once again involved Robinson. He dropped a closely contested battle against Rochester’s Benjamin Fischer. After wining the opening game, Robinson dropped three straight, losing the match 1–3. However, the Bulldogs only lost one more match and came away with the win.
“It was a great way to bounce back from the defeat at Trinity and it was nice to end such a hard week with three solid wins,” Lalwani said. “ I thought that as a team, we played our best squash of the season against Rochester, which is a sign of things to come.”
In the Bulldogs final match of the weekend, they took on an energetic Navy team. But the Midshipmen were unable to challenge the superior Yale squad and fell 9–0.
Robinson rested for the match and will return to action against Princeton next week. In his place, Kenneth Chan ‘13 played at the No. 1 position and handily defeated his opponent in straight games, 3–0.
Lalwani’s match best summarized the Yale attack against Navy. After winning the first two games with ease, the captain won the last game without dropping a single point.
“We each reviewed our matches and fine tuned the little kinks in our games that accounted for us losing some crucial points against Trinity,” Chan said. “On top of that, we wanted to make a firm statement that the Yale squash team is a resilient team. The away loss to Trinity just fueled our ambitions for this season.”
The Bulldogs are back in action this Saturday against No. 3 Princeton.