In fact, attaining its primary objective—defending its title as intercollegiate squash championship—would almost certainly incorporate the second—avenging its 5-4 loss to No. 1 Trinity in Hartford two weeks ago.
The Crimson (8-2, 5-0 Ivy) fell short on both counts by a single point, losing to the Bantams (11-0) once again, 5-4. Trinity’s paper-thin, 9-2, 9-10, 2-9, 9-0, 10-9 victory at the No. 6 spot made the victory possible.
“The closeness of the match is a testament to how hard we worked,” co-captain Colby Hall said.
The weekend began easily enough for both teams, as both Harvard and Trinity cruised to 9-0 victories Friday.
The Crimson triumphed over Williams, spearheaded by Harvard’s top three—sophomore Louisa Hall, co-captain Margaret Elias, and freshman Lindsey Wilkins—who conceded only five points combined in defeating intercollegiate No. 14 Adrienne Ellman, No. 18 Selma Kikic, and No. 39 Clare Whipple, respectively.
Trinity, though, kept up the pace, matching the Crimson’s shutout of the Ephs by blanking Cornell. The Bantams won the 9-0 decision despite the absence of the Bantam’s No. 6 player, Clare Austin.
In Saturday’s semifinals, Trinity found itself in a sea of Ivy, as it took on Princeton while Harvard battled host Yale for a place in the final. Before the matches, Crimson Coach Satinder Bajwa made the decision to rest senior Carlin Wing, who had been bothered by elbow tendonitis during her match Friday, to save her for Sunday’s final.
Giving Wing the day off bumped Colby Hall into the No. 4 slot, shifting the rest of the lineup up accordingly. The lower two-thirds of the Crimson lineup appeared unaffected by the change, as Harvard sailed to a 9-0 victory.
Led by intercollegiate No. 1 Amina Helal, who routed No. 15 Annie Rein-Weston, 9-1, 9-1, 9-0, the Bantams’ top three had little trouble. But the Tigers managed wins at No. 4 and No. 5, with intercollegiate No. 36 Anna Minkowski and No. 37 Francie Comey upsetting No. 33 Samantha Lewins and No. 21 Mollie Anderson, respectively.
It was an overall good day for the Minkowski clan, as Anna’s younger sister Carolynne didn’t drop a game against Princeton No. 9 Jen Shingleton.
Saturday’s results set up the much-anticipated rematch between Harvard and Trinity. The match-up featured the top three and six of the top eight intercollegiate players and gave Trinity the opportunity not only to avenge its loss to Harvard in last year’s Howe Cup Finals, but also to become the first non-Ivy League school to capture the trophy.
“We’ve been there before, so we knew what to expect—a really tough, exciting match,” Wing said.
Indeed, the Crimson senior proved prescient.
Intercollegiate No. 8 Wilkins led Harvard out for the first round of matches in front of a strongly pro-Trinity crowd.
Playing intercollegiate No. 5 Pam Saunders, Wilkins was frustrated with the officiating early in the match. Trailing 6-2 in the first game, Saunders hustled to track down a Wilkins drop shot, but Wilkins claimed she hadn’t reached the ball.