Squash teams score victories over Bates at home

by Emily Wechsler | 1/26/15 6:01pm

The men’s and women’s squash teams came out on top in the first matches of their four-game home stands, as they both scored victories over Bates College at the Berry Squash Courts on Sunday. With decisive 7-2 victories, the No. 7 women (4-4, 0-3) topped No. 15 Bates (6-8), and the No. 11 men (3-5, 0-3) overcame the No. 16 Bobcats (7-7).

Dartmouth’s only losses came at the number one and two spots, showcasing the depth of the team.

“The top of the ladder is really difficult because all the other schools recruit foreign kids that are of a way higher caliber, but the fact that we have a deep team really helps make the bottom of the ladder almost a weapon,” James Fisch ’16 said.

Dartmouth’s success over Bates came as a result of performing properly and executing its game plan, head coach Hansi Wiens said.

“[On Sunday] both teams gave 100 percent,” Wiens said. “They did everything we needed to see.”

The men swept the first round of matches against Bates on Sunday with a three-game win from Kyle Martino ’16 and four game wins from Michael Mistras ’15 and Joshua Renaud ’17.

The men’s team clinched the victory during the second round of matches after Glen Brickman ’17 and Fisch secured wins.

“[My opponent] was injured and wasn’t moving too well, so I tried to keep him behind me and make sure that when I put it forward, he would be stretching out as much as possible,” Fisch said. “It was also hard for him to change directions, so I caught him off guard.”

The final slate of matches saw some of the day’s best play. Mark Funk ‘15 had a four-game victory in which the final game went several points extra. Both of the other matches went for the full five games. Alexander Greer ’16 fell, but Brian Giegerich ’18 played smart squash to come back and win in five at the end of the day.

“We thought [Greer] would be really pushed, but he played well and changed the pace,” Wiens said.

One area of focus for the squash team in the off-season this year was conditioning, and the team has looked strong in longer matches, Fisch said.

“[Fitness] helps at the beginning of the match to come out firing and ready to work hard, and it also prevents you from getting injured,” Fisch said.

Nicholas Harrington ’17 is currently injured, but Fisch feels that once he recovers, the team could have a shot at a few upsets to bring them into the top eight.

The win for the men ended a three-game losing streak and gives the players some confidence going into difficult matches this weekend against No. 3 Columbia University and No. 7 Cornell University.

The women had a slightly easier road to the win, with five matches ending after three games.

I feel really good about it. I think overall we came in confident and that really showed when we were playing,” Jacqueline Barnes ’17 said.

Madeline Fraser ’17 ended her match with an 11-0 game. Zainab Molani ’18 had the only five-game match, and she won it after coming back from a 2-1 deficit.

“[Molani] pushed hard,” Wiens said. “She struggled a bit in the beginning of the match but she pushed hard and changed her tactics.”

Barns fought hard against a competitive opponent, but ultimately fell in a three-game match. Tori Dewey ’16 offered the only other loss for the Big Green, ending in a four-game defeat.

The men faced Cornell earlier this year at the Ivy Scrimmages and narrowly lost with some important players injured.

The women are also looking forward to facing No. 9 Columbia and No. 6 Cornell this weekend.

Both teams will remain at home this weekend facing Columbia Saturday and Cornell Sunday, all at noon.