The last time the No. 1 Trinity men’s squash team lost, Bill Clinton was still president, Titanic had just come out, and Google wouldn’t be founded for another seven months.
Since that Feb. 22, 1998 loss to Harvard, the Bantams (14-0, 7-0 NESCAC) have won an unprecedented 238 consecutive matches—the longest streak of any kind in NCAA Division I history—and 12 consecutive national championships.
If college athletic history means anything, the Crimson might have the best shot of taking down the powerhouse from Connecticut. After losing to Stanford on April 6, 2008, UConn women’s basketball won 90 straight before falling to the Cardinal at the end of last year. Likewise, Notre Dame victories over John Wooden’s UCLA provided the bookends to the Bruins’ famous run in the early 1970’s.
The No. 6 Harvard men’s squash team (7-3, 3-2 Ivy) will try to emulate the Cardinal and the Fighting Irish tomorrow night, when the Crimson and Trinity face off at the Barnaby Courts.
But Harvard has a tall task ahead. The Crimson fell 7-2 to No. 3 Princeton, a much weaker opponent than the Bantams. After all, Trinity thrashed the Tigers 9-0 last year.
To keep up with the national champs, Harvard will need big performances out of everyone, but especially from its freshmen, who make up three of the top four spots.
Things look brighter for the No. 1 Crimson women (8-0, 5-0 Ivy), who also face No. 3 Bantams (12-0, 5-0 NESCAC) tomorrow night at the Barnaby Courts. Led by sophomore Laura Gemmell, last year’s individual national champion, Harvard hasn’t dropped a match in the last two seasons.
Like in its 2009-2010 campaign, the Crimson has held its own against tough teams, beating No. 4 Penn, 5-4, on Saturday and No. 5 Princeton, 7-2, the following day. But the Trinity team the women face tomorrow night will be the best they’ve seen all season.