Take a crucial dual match against arch-rival Princeton, a bunch of supercooled squash courts, hordes of hostile Princeton fans, mix it all together, and what do you get?
Would you believe a major step toward wrapping up the women's national squash championship?
Couldn't happen, you say?
Well it did, this weekend. The Harvard women's squash team took their show on the road squeaking by the Tigers, 5-4, on Saturday and crushing Pennsylvania, 8-1 yesterday. The Crimson now sports a 5-0 record.
"The Princeton win was basically a trip," said number four Drana Stalcy. "It's nice to beat them, especially there in front of all the fans. That makes is extra special."
Players said they felt at somewhat of a disadvantage because the courts had been blown with cold air before the match. "They cool down the courts to make the ball bounce less. They know we're used to the warm courts at Hemenway Gym," she added.
Cool courts or no, the Crimson overpowered Princeton, which has lost only handful of meets in the last decade.
The victory came on the of a similar outcome last year
"This was the more special win because it proved that last year's was no fluke. We showed that we're really good," said sophomore Ingers Royum, a member of last year team.
For what turned out to be a banner effort, the contest began father inauspiciously for the Crimson Harvard's first three players all lost close matches. Top-seeded Mary Hulbert '85 fell .2 as did Bos and Laura Kays '85 at number three
The Pennsylvania thrushine was no surprise. "We knew we'd with pretty handily," said Stales
The Princeton victors the team an edge for next week season highlight--the Howe Cup tournament at Yale The countries top teams will be there.
"The Princeton win gives us a lot of confidence," Staley said. "Now we all know we can do it next week."