Harvard's first-ranked squash team notched its second straight shutout yesterday by sweeping 27 of 28 individual matches to crush Amherst, 9-0, before a crowd of about 60 at Hemenway Gymnasium.
The Amherst racquetmen, who one week ago lost to Penn by the same score, looked bright in spots but still never threatened the steamrolling Crimson.
"I though we played as well as we could at this point, and 1000 per cent better then against Penn," Amherst coach Ed. Serues said after the match. "To be frank, the reason we lost today was because Harvard was just tougher than we were at getting the ball."
Crimson intercollegiate champion Peter Briggs, coming off a lower-back injury, looked particularly impressive as he overwhelmed Sabrina captain Peter Smith in the main event, 15-4, 15-10, and 15-5.
Briggs took command of his match from the start, aggressively pounding the front wall with long drives while ubiquitously gliding across the court to return Smith's best shots.
"I though he played really quite well, considering he's been injured and he faced a pretty tough man," Harvard coach Jack Barnaby said.
In the second-man match, Andy Wirgand capitalized on the portliness of Amherst's Brian MacDermott, hitting cross-court slams and then changing up with a variety of drop shots to ace his slower opponent, 15-12, 15-9, and 15-12.
Lobs and Boasts
Third man Glen Whitman, coolly mixing boasts, lobs and reverse corner shots, breezed by Woody Tasch in three straight games, while fourth-seeded Neil Voters also overpowered Ross Read.
Archite Gwathmy was the only Crimson racquetman to loss a game, falling to Bob Landau in the second round of their match, 16-17. Sophomore Steve Mead dropped his exhibition match, 3-2. In the tenth man division, but the tenth division does not count in the team score.
The Crimson, favored to seize its tenth national title in 11 years, clashes with Williams at 2 p.m. Saturday at Hemenway Gym.
For Amherst, it's back to the drawing board, says coach Serues.
"Harvard plays good sound bread-and-butter squash," he said just before leaving the match. "That's what we're going home to work on the right now."