This week's around the water cooler takes us indoors, where Ivy League basketball and hockey are in full swing.
Whether to escape the cold or to hit the books, everyone’s been spending a lot of time indoors as of late, and Ivy League sports teams are no exception. Hockey’s well underway, with two Ancient Eight squads leading the way nationally. And in basketball, the Ivy League is trying to continue its new tradition of upsetting big teams. Don’t worry, we’ll explain everything in our weekly chat around the water cooler.
This year, men’s hockey just isn’t Harvard’s game. The squad hasn’t taken home a “W” since Nov. 12, and since that time, the Crimson has been outscored, 25-10. Consequently, Harvard now finds itself at the bottom of the ECAC standings, ranked 11th out of the 12 teams. And the competition won’t get any easier tonight, as the Crimson faces off against No. 18 Quinnipiac, which found the back of the net five times in its last match against Harvard.
But while the Crimson is struggling, other Ivy League teams are ripping it up, as Yale, Princeton, and Dartmouth round out the top three teams in the ECAC. In fact, the Bulldogs are, for the first time in school history, the top-ranked team in the nation. In this week’s poll, Yale slipped past former No. 1 Minnesota-Duluth to claim the top spot, and with good reason: off to their strongest start in 81 years, the Bulldogs have only dropped one contest so far and have yet to score less than three goals in a game.
Published by Kate Leist
on December 08, 2010 at 3:11AM
In the last weekend before many ECAC squads break for the holidays, only two teams—Cornell and Quinnipiac—really got in the holiday spirit. But the biggest gainer in this week’s edition of the power rankings? That would be Colgate, who rode an eight-goal outburst all the way to...a weekend split. Such is life in ECAC Hockey. Let’s see who’s moving towards the top of Santa’s list and who’s doomed to get coal in their stockings.
1. Cornell (13-1-0, 8-0-0 ECAC, 1st in conference)
The Big Red held onto its No. 1 spot in the national polls after beating Syracuse, St. Lawrence, and Clarkson by an aggregate 10-2 count last week. Cornell hasn’t allowed more than a goal in a game since a Nov. 2 overtime loss to Mercyhurst.
2. Quinnipiac (13-6-1, 6-5, 2nd)
The Bobcats vaulted into second place in the ECAC with a pair of dominant wins over Yale and Brown. Freshman Kelly Babstock set the single-season program goals record last weekend (yes, that’s right, in the first weekend of December) when she netted her 16th tally of the season, earning her conference player of the week honors.
3. St. Lawrence (8-7-2, 4-3-0, 7th)
The Saints got a puck past Cornell goaltender Amanda Mazzotta last weekend, which is an accomplishment in and of itself. St. Lawrence’s 5-3 win over Colgate on Saturday gives it some momentum heading into a tough series with No. 3 Mercyhurst this weekend.
Sophomore and defending national champion Laura Gemmell has held on to her spot atop the CSA individual national rankings.
The women’s College Squash Association has just released its preseason individual rankings for the 2010-11 season, and the results look very promising for the undefeated Harvard squash team (5-0, 3-0 Ivy).
The rankings, which cite the top 100 players, were compiled using the 2009-10 women’s final individual rankings as well as coach’s estimations of their players and their team’s line-ups.
The CSA also capped each team’s representation at 10 players.
The No. 1 Crimson definitely made a dent in the rankings—10 of the squad’s roster have made the list, with eight athletes falling in the top 50.
Sitting atop the rankings, sophomore Laura Gemmell has held onto her position from the end of last season. Directly below her is Trinity’s Pamela Hathway. The junior faced Gemmell last season in the CSA national individual championship match, falling after five drawn-out frames. If these rankings are a prediction of championship play to come, Gemmell and Hathway are on track for a heated rematch.
Both women’s basketball freshman guard Christine Clark and men’s basketball freshman guard Laurent Rivard earned Ivy League Rookie of the Week honors this week, proving Harvard is definitely doing right by the new kids in Lavietes.
Clark, who holds the title for a second time this season, earned the nomination after helping the Crimson drive up the score in its home-opening victory over Hartford. The former McDonald’s All-American nominee scored in the double digits for her fifth straight game and managed to get three rebounds and two steals along the way.
Clark scored her first conference title in the week of Nov. 22, after she notched 12 points in a total of 26 minutes of play against Navy on Nov. 20.
The winning streak continues.
The Harvard women's squash team played its last game of the calendar year against Cornell yesterday, and the squad proved invincible once again. The Crimson swept the Big Red, 9-0, with only one player pushed to five sets—the first time this has happened this year. This is the fifth straight 9-0 win for Harvard in what has been so far a dominant defense of its national title from last season. If you include last year's undefeated season in the wins total, the Crimson has won 17 matchups in a row. Seventeen? That's like an entire football season plus one.
The last loss came at the hands of Ivy rival Princeton on Feb. 15, 2009 in that season's CSA championship game. Will the Crimson still be undefeated when the two-year anniversary of that defeat comes around? Harvard's schedule will significantly toughen up after the holiday break, with the Crimson facing Penn, last season's national semifinalist, and the Tigers back-to-back the weekend of Feb. 5-6. But with the way things are going now, it seems like no team will stop Harvard from steamrolling its way back to the CSA national championship game.