After dropping into the consolation bracket of the CSA National Team Championships, the men’s squash team won its final two games of the season to capture the Summers’ Cup (C-Division) consolation prize.
In the opening match of the Jeffs’ tournament, Amherst fell to No. 23-ranked Colby Mules by a score of 2-7. At the Pioneer Valley Invitational earlier in the season (Jan. 22), the Jeffs had squeaked past the Mules, 5-4.
This time around, however, the Amherst squad dropped the close matches that proved critical to Colby’s victory. First-year Alex Southmayd (#8), riding a four-game winning streak, was unable to close out a tough contest against the Mules’ John Eder, falling by a 3-2 count. Todd Lavine ’12, playing at number five, also lost in five sets to Colby’s Will Hochman.
While Dave Kerr ’14 and Charles Loesch-Quentin ’13, Amherst’s numbers three and four, respectively, both recorded victories, the top of the Jeffs’ lineup faltered. Scott DeSantis ’15 (#1) suffered a sweep at the hands of Mules’ senior Harry Smith, and co-captain Steve Severson ’12 (#2) also fell, 3-1.
With the loss, the Jeffs fell into the C Divison’s consolation bracket.
Although originally seeded No. 2 in the Summers’ Cup, the Jeffs responded from their upset loss with their third consecutive victory over No. 19 Wesleyan. DeSantis fell to his top-ranked Cardinals opponent, but the next four Jeffs in the lineup fared much better.
Kerr delivered the match of the day, defeating Michael DeLalio in five games after falling behind, 2-1. Loesch-Quentin also stayed hot with a 3-1 victory at number four.
After taking care of business against the Cardinals, the Jeffs ended their season on a high note with a 7-2 defeat of Conn. College.
Though Amherst’s numbers one and nine stumbled, the bulk of the Amherst lineup was flawless against the Camels. Southmayd, Severson and first-year Max Kardon all managed sweeps. Kerr won the hard way, taking a gritty five-set affair from John Sluder. The victory secured the consolation bracket for the Jeffs.
Finishing with a record 13-8, the Jeffs ended an up-and-down season in positive fashion. The Jeffs will part ways with four graduating seniors — Severson, Lavine, Matt Arnold and Zach Porges — who can take pride in their leadership of a relatively young 2011-12 squad.
With a wealth of returners, however, the Jeffs will certainly have the ability to return to the B division and remain in the top 20 nationally.
As a postscript to its season, Amherst will host the CSA Individual Championships in two weeks (March 2-4).
Meanwhile, the Lady Jeffs will close out their year this weekend at their own CSA Team Championships, which will take place at Harvard Univ.