The women’s squash team heads into the Howe Cup — the season-ending national championship — undefeated in Ivy League play and with just one loss to top-ranked and defending national champion Trinity College.
In what was perhaps its biggest win in years, Yale (8-1, 5-0 Ivy) defeated then-No. 3 Princeton 7-2 in Princeton, N.J., on Feb. 2.
“We were clearly better than Princeton,” head coach Mark Talbott said after the match. “In the first four years I [was] here Princeton had beaten us soundly. It is a good feeling to turn it around.”
The win over the Tigers assured the Bulldogs a shot at the Ivy League championship when they host No. 2 Harvard in a duel match on Feb. 20. Harvard did not lose a single game in its 9-0 win over Princeton last Sunday.
“We should give [Harvard] a run, but it will be tough,” Talbott said. “The team is starting to believe that they can beat the best.”
Yale will get a chance to put its beliefs to the test in the upcoming Howe Cup in New Haven Feb. 15-17. All the top teams enter the tournament, including Harvard and Trinity, which are both seeded above Yale.
In the Cup, the Bulldogs will rely on the strength of their younger players. Yale boasts a roster with seven freshmen, two sophomores and only three upperclassmen. Frances Ho ’05, who is among the country’s top 10 players has been Yale’s No. 1 this year and has registered many impressive performances.
Other contributing freshmen include Lauren Doline, Sarah Coleman, Ruth Kelley and Lindsay Schroll.
Team captain Miriam Fishman ’02, Katherine Sands ’02 and Gina Wilkinson ’03 give Yale leadership on and off the courts, and sophomores Devon Dalzell and Abigail McDonough provide solid play at the top of the lineup.