Men’s Squash Records 10th Straight Quarterfinal at NESCAC Tourney
Issue   |   Tue, 02/09/2016 - 23:04

This past weekend, men’s squash traveled south to Trinity to compete in the NESCAC championships, which stretched from Friday, Feb. 5 to Sunday, Feb. 7. The team was coming off of a disappointing 0-2 showing at the Little III championship on Jan. 31, where the purple and white fell 8-1 to Williams and 5-4 to Wesleyan in a heartbreaker which nonetheless included several bright spots for Amherst. Senior captain Noah Browne continued his dominant play on the first court, where he started down two sets but fought back for a 3-2 victory to the tune of 8-11, 7-11, 11-9, 11-7, 11-1. Cameron Bahadori ’18, playing in the second position, came up with an excellent comeback of his own, winning 9-11, 4-11, 12-10, 11-9, 11-5. Michael Groot ’17 and Jeremy Van ’17 posted Amherst’s other two wins against the Cardinals.

These results saw Amherst earn the No. 8 seed in the NESCAC tournament bracket and a date with ninth-seeded Tufts on Friday afternoon, with both squads eyeing a quarterfinal berth. What looked like a close match proved to be nothing of the sort, as Amherst dropped just one of 28 sets en route to a 9-0 win and the program’s 10th consecutive trip to the quarterfinals. Next up the team hosted national powerhouse Trinity, the perennial No. 1 seed. After an 8-1 loss, Amherst regrouped for a rematch with Colby, the five seed, in the consolation bracket. Two first-years shone brightest for Amherst. Harith Khawaja and Lucas Sheiner each managed exciting 3-2 victories from the fourth and seventh courts, respectively. Noah Browne ’16 also won in a 3-0 sweep on court one. However, the purple and white dropped the contest 6-3.

The loss to Colby sent Amherst to the seventh-place match on Sunday, where they would face Bowdoin, seeded seventh entering the tournament. The purple and white rode a true team effort to victory. David Merkel ’19 on court three, Darian Ehsani ’17 on court five, Michael Groot ’17 on court six, Lucas Sheiner ’19 on court seven and Jeremy Van ’18 on court eight all won. In addition, Noah Browne ’16 collected a 3-1 victory to extend his individual record to 12-1 on the season. And so, the purple and white outperformed their seed with a seventh-place NESCAC finish.
Amherst will return to action at the CSA Championships at Yale this weekend Feb. 19-21.