Cambridge, Mass. – The Harvard University Crimson raced to wins in the first seven matches to earn an 8-1 victory over the visiting Trinity College Bantams in women’s squash action this afternoon at Barnaby Courts. Trinity, ranked No. 1 in the nation, falls to 12-1 with its first loss since a 5-4 setback to Harvard at home exactly one year ago. The Bantams went on to win their next 17 matches entering today, including a 5-4 triumph over the Crimson in the 2014 College Squash Association (CSA) National Championship (Howe Cup) Finals to capture their third national title in the last meeting between the teams. No. 3-ranked Harvard improves to 8-1 with its fifth-straight win.
Trinity first-year Raneem Sharaf (Giza, Egypt) recorded the Bantam point with a marathon 3-2 victory over Harvard sophomore Katie Tutrone (Baltimore, Md.) at the No. 2 position. Sharaf won the first game, 11-6, and the pair alternated victories with Tutrone earning an 11-9 in in the fourth game to force the tiebreaker. Sharaf came out on top, 11-8, to make the score, 7-1, and Crimson senior Amanda Sobhy (Sea Cliff, N.Y.), the nation’s top-ranked player, downed No. 2-ranked Trinity junior Kanzy El Defrawy (Cairo, Egypt), 3-0, to account for the 8-1 final tally.
Junior Saumya Karki (Thane, India) gave the Crimson a 1-0 lead early with a 3-0 victory at No. 6 over Bantam rookie Salma El Defrawy (Cairo, Egypt), and Harvard junior Isabelle Dowling (Riverside, Conn.) won, 3-1, against Trinity junior Sachika Balvani (Mumbai, India) in the No. 9 match for a 2-0 team score. In the No. 3 match, Trinity sophomore Anna Kimberley (Colchester, England) led, 2-1, with wins in the first and third games but lost, 11-9, and, 11-7, in the last two against Crimson rookie Alyssa Mehta (Toronto, Ontario) for Kimberley’s first career loss in dual-match play to give the home team a 3-0 advantage after the first wave.
Harvard carried the momentum with wins at No. 8 and No. 5, in that order, to clinch it. Trinity rookie Karolina Holinkova (Krnov, Czech Republic) won her first game, 11-4, against Harvard senior Julianne Chu (New York, N.Y.), but Chu rallied to win the next three and take the No. 8 match. Bantam senior co-captain Ashley Tidman (Lamor-Plage, France) tied the No. 5 match, 1-1, with a 13-11 victory in the second game after a 12-10 loss in game one, but lost the next two, 11-8, and, 11-5, against Crimson freshman Sue Ann Yong (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia).
1. H- Amanda Sobhy d. Kanzy El Defrawy, 11-9, 11-8, 11-1
2. TC- Raneem Sharaf d. Katie Tutrone, 11-6, 9-11, 11-9, 9-11, 11-8
3. H- Alyssa Mehta d. Anna Kimberley, 9-11, 11-3, 5-11, 11-9, 11-7
4. H- Michelle Gemmell d. Julia LeCoq, 11-7, 12-10, 5-11, 11-0
5. H- Sue Ann Yong d. Ashley Tidman, 12-10, 11-13, 11-8, 11-5
6. H- Saumya Karki d. Salma El Defrawy, 11-5, 11-9, 11-8
7. H- Dileas McGowan d. Natalie Babjukova, 15-13, 13-11, 11-6
8. H- Julianne Chu d. Karolina Holinkova, 4-11, 11-8, 11-9, 11-4
9. H- Isabelle Dowling d. Sachika Balvani, 11-8, 4-11, 11-8, 11-8
Harvard 8, Trinity (Conn.) 1