Athletics

Amherst Guts Out Hard-Fought 5-4 Win Over Vassar

POUGHKEEPSIE, NY – In a tight matchup indicative of their similar national women’s squash rankings, No. 18 Vassar College was narrowly edged by No. 17 Amherst College, 5-4, on Saturday at Kenyon Courts. All but one of the matches took four or more games to decide.

In their first loss of the season, the Brewers fall to 3-1 and will play No. 12 Bates College and No. 39 Vanderbilt University tomorrow at 10:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m., respectively, at the StreetSquash/Columbia Center in New York City. The Lord Jeffs improve to 2-0 and will not compete again in 2009, next traveling to MIT on Jan. 12, 2010.

At the top of the ladder, No. 1 senior Emilie Kraft and No. 2 junior Kristine Bell dropped their first matches of the season. The closely-contested No. 1 match went to four games, with Amherst’s Hayley Milbourn (Baltimore, MD) rebounding from a first-game loss to defeat Kraft, 9-11, 11-9, 11-6, 11-5. At No. 2, Lord Jeff Chandler Lusardi (New York, NY) downed Bell, 11-5, 11-8, 11-4.

Vassar first-year Libby Pei notched one of the most thrilling wins of the day, going to five games with Kate Savage (Philadelphia, PA) at the No. 3 spot. In the back-and-forth match, Pei won, 11-8, 9-11, 11-8, 8-11 and then pulled off a 16-14 win in the decisive fifth game.

The No. 7 and No. 8 matches also went to five games. At No. 7, Vassar first-year Alexa Lichtenstein won the final two games to take the 7-11, 11-9, 8-11, 11-8, 11-8 victory, while at No.  8 it was Amherst’s Mary Katherine McNeill (Greenwich, CT) recovering from a 2-1 deficit for a 7-11, 11-9, 8-11, 11-7, 11-8 win.

Vassar picked up 3-1 wins from No. 5 Caitlin Ly and No. 6 Meg Taylor, while the Lord Jeffs got a 3-1 win from No. 9 Sarah Nyirjesy (Rydal, PA). The only sweep of the match was at No. 4, as Amherst’s Anna Schiedt (Fort Lee, NJ) defeated Hope Blinkoff, 11-5, 11-2, 11-2.

Amherst 5, Vassar 4
1. Hayley Milbourn (A) def. Emilie Kraft (VC), 3-1 (9-11, 11-9, 11-6, 11-5)
2. Chandler Lusaedi (A) def. Kristine Bell (VC), 3-0 (11-5, 11-8, 11-4)
3. Libby Pei (VC) def. Kate Savage (A), 3-2 (11-8, 9-11, 11-8, 8-11, 16-14)
4. Anna Schiedt (A) def. Hope Blinkoff (VC), 3-0 (11-5, 11-2, 11-2)
5. Caitlin Ly (VC) def. Anne Piper (A), 3-1 (12-10, 12-10, 2-11, 14-12)
6. Meg Taylor (VC) def. Mimi Bell (A), 3-1 (12-10, 9-11, 11-7, 11-6)
7. Alexa Lichtenstein (VC) def. Ginny Wheeler (A), 3-2 (7-11, 11-9, 8-11, 11-7, 11-8)
8. Mary McNeill (A) def. Olivia Mak (VC), 3-2 (11-7, 8-11, 9-11, 12-10, 11-4)
9. Sarah Nyirjesy (A) def. Jill Levine (VC), 3-1 (11-6, 11-6, 5-11, 11-7)