NEW HAVEN, Conn. – The Haverford College men's squash team heads into the weekend's College Squash Association 2013 team championship at Yale University trying to duplicate the successes achieved last season when it captured the F Division Serues Cup.
This time around, though, the improved Fords will see challenges from moving up two divisions, to the Conroy Cup/D Division, based on a 9-5 record and No. 28 ranking in the final regular season CSA poll released Monday.
The Conroy Cup includes the eight teams ranked from 25th to 32nd in the nation, in comparison to the Serues Cup which was for the 41st through 48th-ranked teams.
Haverford has faced just one of the possible opponents within the Conroy bracket, defeating No. 30 Johns Hopkins University by a score of 5-4 on Feb. 2. The other teams in the bracket, including the Fords' opening match-up against No. 29 Georgetown University, present first-time foes.
The D Division is topped by 25th-ranked Colby College which squares off against No. 32 Tufts in Haverford's half of the bracket. In the other side of the bracket, No. 27 Bucknell University takes on Hopkins and 26th-ranked Stanford University will battle No. 31 Hobart College.
The Fords enter the championships having won five of their last seven matches including an 8-1 thrashing of No. 32 Boston University. The only losses in that span were to No. 7 Franklin & Marshall College and No. 21 Drexel University.
Despite a 6-8 season record, Andy McComas gives the Fords a strong shot at a winning point in the No. 1 spot. The trio of Chris Tyson, Nathan Vestrich-Shade and Laurenson Ward also present strong opportunities to add wins as all three carry 6-4 records in the last 10 matches into the weekend.
Tyson will likely play in the No. 3 spot with Vestrich-Shade a probability at No. 5. Ward has anchored the No. 6 spot all season for the Fords.
Friday's match against Georgetown will be played at Choate-Rosemary Hall in nearby Wallingford, Conn. A win over the Hoyas would move Haverford into the winner's side of the bracket where, on Saturday at Choate, it would take on the winner of the Colby/Tufts match.
Sunday's match for Haverford would be at Yale if the Fords were to advance into the Conroy championship match. Any other match would be contested at Choate.