US SQUASH

Princeton Seeded to Challenge Harvard in Howe Cup Final

Report courtesy of College Squash Association.

The 2020 College Squash Association National Collegiate Women’s Team Championships are scheduled to begin on Friday, Friday 21, 2020. Yale University and Hopkins School in New Haven, CT will be the host venues for the tournament, which has a packed schedule throughout Saturday and Sunday.

The Tournament Homepage is the place to go for information about the event, including the draws with live scoring, links to the live webcast of fourteen of Yale’s courts, and the order of play during the weekend. The live stream links will be active beginning on Friday morning.

43 teams from around the country will participate in the championships and compete across five divisions: Howe Cup (teams ranked No. 1-8)—which determines the national team champion, Kurtz Cup (9-16), Walker Cup (17-24), Epps Cup (25-32), and the E Division (33-43).

The Harvard Crimson women have put on an impressive display throughout the season on their way to securing the top overall seed for the Championships. Coming off a season when they captured their fifth Howe Cup in a row, Harvard continued their dominance with another undefeated season. Harvard will meet eighth-seeded Columbia in the first round on Friday afternoon.

Again like last year, Princeton captured the No. 2 seed with only a single loss on the year. The Tigers pushed Harvard to the brink during their regular season contest and will be eager for a rematch, which would only happen in the National Championship match. Princeton meets 7-seed Drexel in their first round match.

The rest of the Howe Division draw is filled out with teams who staged very close contests all year long. Yale edges Trinity for the third seed on the strength of their head-to-head victory in January. Penn and Stanford complete the draw as the 5- and 6-seeds, respectively. 5-4 scorelines were prevalent between all of the Howe Cup squads during the season, and fans should look for more of the same this weekend.

Dartmouth and Virginia arrive in New Haven as the top two seeds in the Kurtz (B) Division for the second year in a row. A possible meeting in the final would be the first match-up between the teams this season. Defending Kurtz Cup Champion Cornell will have something to say about that, however, as they look to repeat their run to the title from a year ago. Successful NESCAC Championship campaigns see Middlebury and Bates slide into the seventh and eighth seeds, respectively, in the division.

Although they were the odd team out in the NESCAC trio with Middlebury and Bates, Amherst leads the Walker Division draw with a chance to bring home some hardware. The top of the draw has a distinctly NESCAC feel all around, with 8-seed Hamilton playing Amherst and Bowdoin and Wesleyan meeting in the other quarterfinal. There is also a familiarity at the bottom of the draw where Franklin & Marshall and Dickinson meet in the two-versus-seven match-up. Tufts and William Smith are the remaining two teams vying for the Walker Cup.

Connecticut College and St. Lawrence enter Epps Cup competition as the top two seeds in the draw, with both teams facing club squads – Bucknell and Boston College, respectively – in the first round. Conn College will be on the hunt for their second Epps Cup Championship in a row. The highest ranked club team, Georgetown, will be playing their final Team Championships as a club program before they make the jump to varsity status next season. The Hoyas will meet 3-seed Mount Holyoke in the first round, while Haverford and Colby face off in the last quarterfinal.

Vassar College just misses out on an Epps Division berth, but they secured the top seed in the 11-team E Division. Vassar will also be looking for a repeat championship performance after capturing the E Division title last season. Three play-in matches will kick off the E Division competition on Friday evening before a full day of competition on Saturday. Northeastern, Denison, and Wellesley are the remaining top-4 seeds in the draw.

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