The second college squash rankings, released on Wednesday, will be put to the test this weekend with several matches between teams that are close in the standings.
Among the teams making their season debut this weekend, the team with the most challenging road appears to be the No. 4 Stanford University women. Making one of their customary trips out east, the Cardinal will play three matches in two days, taking on the Number 3, 7, and 8 teams in the latest rankings. After a Philadelphia doubleheader against Penn and Drexel later today, the match of the weekend pits Stanford against No. 3 Princeton at the Philadelphia Cricket Club. Stanford upset the Tigers at the College Squash Women’s Team National Championships last year, so Princeton will be on the prowl to avenge that loss.
Slightly farther south, an intriguing match-up kicks off another weekend of round robin play at the U.S. Naval Academy. This evening, No. 16 Navy welcomes No. 17 MIT in a contest that could have long-term implications for a spot in the Hoehn (B) Division of the Men’s Team Championships. MIT, the 2019 Barnaby Award winner as the most improved team of the season, will aim to carry that momentum into their upset bid.
Columbia University is another program with a tough set of matches this weekend. On Saturday, the Lions travel to Drexel for a pair of tricky match-ups. The higher-ranked Columbia men (No. 7) and women (No. 6) will look to hold their positions against the aspiring Dragons (men No. 11/women No. 8). Columbia then returns to New York on Sunday to defend home turf against George Washington University. The men’s No. 7-versus-No. 9 match-up is the headliner there.
New York City will play host to an additional set of close rankings matches. Fordham University welcomes Bard College, New York University, and Washington University of St. Louis, all of whom are closely bunched in both the men’s and women’s rankings.
Additional action is spread out all over CSA geographical territory with several other intriguing contests. Yale and Wesleyan will be hosting several teams in Connecticut who will move between venues over the course of the three days. Bowdoin, Conn College, Dickinson, Hamilton, Virginia, and Williams will all be in town on the hunt for early-season victories.
Conn College also visits Vassar College along with Haverford College for a tri-match on Saturday. Conn’s goal will be to hold serve against their lower-ranked opponents, while the No. 29-vs-30 Haverford-Vassar women’s match-up is the match of the weekend there.
Tufts University bypasses the activity in Connecticut for a date with Franklin & Marshall in south central Pennsylvania. The No. 17 Jumbos women earned a boost in the preseason rankings and are poised to support that vote against the No. 19 Diplomat women.
The order of play for this weekend is:
- 3-court system: 1,2,3 / 5,6,4 / 8,9,7
- 5-court system: 2,1 / 3,4 / 6,5 / 7,8 / 10,9