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December 17, 2013

Ivies off to Another Strong Start in Women's Squash

PRINCETON, N.J. -- Led by top-ranked Harvard, the Ivy League dominates the Dunlop Women's College Squash Association Team Rankings.

The two-time defending national champs, Harvard is ranked No. 1 with Penn third, Princeton fourth and Yale fifth. Cornell is sixth in the rankings released last weekend with Dartmouth eighth, Brown ninth and Columbia at No. 11. 

Six of the eight Ivies are unbeaten thus far. Princeton is 4-0, while Harvard, Cornell, Brown and Penn are each 3-0. Yale is also 2-0. 

Here is a quick look at each team thus far: 

Brown
The No. 9-ranked Bears are 3-0 to open the season for the second straight year. Last weekend, Brown turned away Drexel, 7-2. Kathryn Yates, Isabel Scherl, Emily Richmond, Dori Rahbar, Isabel Pitaro and Katherine Elliott-Moskwa are each 3-0 to open the season for the Bears. 

Upcoming Schedule: Jan. 11 Cornell, Jan. 12 Columbia, Jan. 12 George Washington, Jan. 17 at Bates, Jan. 18 at Bowdoin. 

Columbia
The Lions (1-1) dropped their Ivy opener last weekend to Cornell, 7-2. Columbia opened the season two weeks earlier with a 7-2 win at home over George Washington. Catherine Jenkins won a five-game match to move to 2-0 on the season and Kate Calihan swept in three straight to account for Columbia's wins over the Big Red. 

Upcoming Schedule: Jan. 11 at Yale, Jan. 12 at Brown, Jan. 17 vs Wesleyan at Amherst, Jan. 17 at Amherst, Jan. 18 vs Franklin & Marshall at Amherst, Jan. 19 Williams. 

Cornell
The Big Red, ranked No. 6, are off to a 3-0 start overall for the second straight year and earned their first Ivy win of the season last weekend. After defeating Drexel and Stanford in Philadelphia two weeks ago, Cornell defeated Columbia, 7-2, last weekend. Danielle Letourneau and Jesse Pacheco are both 3-0 in the top two line-up positions to give the Big Red a strong 1-2 punch thus far. Letourneau has yet to lose a game, while Pacheco has won nine out of 10 thus far. 

Upcoming Schedule: Jan. 11 at Brown, Jan. 12 at Yale, Jan. 13 at Trinity, Jan. 18 at St. Lawrence. 

Dartmouth
The No. 8 Big Green (1-1, 0-1 Ivy) opened the season last week, splitting a pair of matches. The defending Kurtz Cup champs, Dartmouth lost to top-ranked Harvard to open the season, 9-0, but bounced back to defeat Franklin & Marshall two days later, 8-1. Dartmouth won six of the nine matches against F&M in straight games with Victoria Dewey recording the most impressive sweep. Dewey lost just three points in three games to earn her win at No. 9. 

Upcoming Schedule: Jan. 11 Penn, Jan. 12 Princeton, Jan. 15 at Trinity, Jan. 19 St. Lawrence.  

Harvard 
The two-time defending national champions, Harvard (3-0, 1-0 Ivy) is off to another dominant start. The Crimson has defeated Dartmouth, Drexel and Boston College each by 9-0 scores to open the season, running their winning streak to 13 straight matches going back to last year. Harvard has won 35 of its last 36 and 46 of its last 49. In the three wins this year, Harvard has lost just three individual games. Two-time defending individual national champion Amanda Sohby is 2-0 thus far this season to run her collegiate record to 32-0. 

Upcoming Schedule: Jan. 7 at Williams, Jan. 11 Princeton, Jan. 12 Penn. 

Penn
Penn (3-0), which finished third in the Howe Cup a year ago, has three convincing wins of its own to open the season. The Quakers, ranked No. 3 currently, shutout Williams and Stanford and defeated George Washington, 8-1, to open the season three weeks ago. Haidi Lala and Courtney Jones are both 3-0 in the Nos. 2 and 3 positions, respectively, for Penn. The Quakers have won 19 of their last 22 matches going back to February 2011 with two of those three losses coming against Harvard.

Upcoming Schedule: Jan. 11 at Dartmouth, Jan. 12 at Harvard, Jan. 18 at Trinity.   

Princeton 
Princeton (4-0) is ranked No. 4 currently and has won its first four matches all by 9-0 scores. The Tigers won 108 of the 112 individual games in those wins as they prepare for their annual Ivy League showdown with Harvard on January 11. Maria Elena Ubina is 3-0 playing in the No. 1 position thus far for the Tigers. In the last outing, she topped George Washington's Anna Porras in five games to give Porras her first loss of the season. 

Upcoming Schedule: Jan. 11 at Harvard, Jan. 12 at Dartmouth.   

Yale 
Fifth-ranked Yale (2-0) began its season with a doubleheader sweep of Amherst and Williams last weekend, winning both by 9-0 scores. The Bulldogs won all 54 individual games in the sweep. The Bulldogs used 14 different players in the wins. Millie Tomlinson won her season-opening match, easily defeating Alyssa Northrop of Williams. 

Upcoming Schedule: Jan. 8 at Franklin & Marshall, Jan. 11 Columbia, Jan. 12 Cornell, Jan. 19 Haverford.