Season Preview: Women's squash looks to take the next step

HAVERFORD, Pa.- The Haverford College women's squash team returns a veteran lineup in 2013-14.

The Fords will be looking to build off last season's successful campaign that concluded with the E Division title at the College Squash Association (CSA) championships.

A driven and cohesive group will look to continue to work hard in preparation and focus with the aim of ascending the national rankings.

Coach Niki Clement is eager to see what the season holds for her squad. "Overall this team is made up of individuals who really want to see their games improve," said Clement. "Because of this I expect to see a big improvement in level of play over the course of the season."

Haverford, ranked 31st in the preseason national poll, will benefit from the presence of senior Caroline Nightingale at the top of the ladder. Nightingale, in her fourth year in the top spot, was invited to play in the national individual tournament last season and coach Clement expects her to shine in her final season in a Haverford uniform.

Juniors Samara Flug and Alex Love, along with sophomores Alyssa Kaden, Sarah Madigan and Bethany Simmonds, were consistent contributors last season and will be counted on to elevate their individual games. Other returning players looking to make their mark are Emily Berlin, Ava Lichauco and Avery Weisel.

The Fords also welcome an injection of new talent in the form of senior Allison Kandel and freshmen Isabel Agnew, Rachael Garnick and Emilia Cobbs.

Clement sees big things on the horizon for this team in 2014. "I am looking forward to the group getting more match experience," said the fourth-year head coach. "I think once they are confident in their game, they will be bringing home some exciting wins."

A challenging schedule features matches against teams such as Johns Hopkins University, Northeastern University and Tufts University. The first step of what the Haverford women hope will be a memorable journey comes at New York University on Nov. 9.