Harvard's squash team launched its crusade for another national championship last night as it dominated all nine of its individual matches to smear perennial patsy, MIT.
The Crimson, which hasn't lost to the Engineers in squash since before World War II, treated the contest as a tune-up for tougher things to come by coolly sweeping all but 2 out of 29 games.
"It was obviously a mismatch." Harvard coach Jack Barnaby said after the clash. "MIT just doesn't have the experienced players who can compete with us."
In the feature match, Crimson captain Peter Briggs breezed by MIT's top raquetman Lance Hellinger in three wraight games, 15-5, 15-13, and 15-11. Briggs, a senior southpaw gunning to repeat as intercollegiate champion simply outwitted his opponent with a well-balanced combination of hard drives, reverse corner shots, and side wall drops.
Junior Glen Whitman played the second position instead of Andy Wiegand, who missed the contest due to a conflicting meeting, and also won in three straight games over Engineer co-captain Phil Nanavati.
MIT scored its first single game victory in the fifth man division when William Young, the Engineer's top tennis player, forced Harvard senior Archie Gwathmy to tin repeatedly and startled the Crimson racquetman by winning the first round, 15-11.
Sophomore Steve Mesd, anchoring the eighth wrung on the ladder, also dropped one game but, like Gwathmy, settled down to beat his man convincingly.
Coach Barnaby praised Mead for his showing and indicated that he might be elevated on the ladder. "He played real well and he showed good hustle, he may be further up there for the Amherst match here on Wednesday," he said.
MIT coach Ed Crocker was not disappointed despite the shutout and also lauded Harvard's talents. "I thought we fought well, but Harvard has the best team in the league every year, and we just don't get the experienced players that they always come up with, and in squash, that's what it takes to win," he said.
"Most of Harvard's players have played more squash before they got to college than my seniors have played their entire lives." Crocker added." At MIT, very few incoming men have ever been on a squash court before, and no matter how gifted they are, it takes time to know the game. Harvard has had a lot more time than we have."