The reigning national champion Princeton men's squash team defeated seventh-ranked Franklin & Marshall in a hard-fought Potter Cup quarterfinal match Friday afternoon at the Brady Squash Center. The victory, combined with Harvard's 6-3 win over Rochester, sets up a showdown of the Ivy League co-champions Saturday.
Second-seeded Princeton will take on third-seeded Harvard at noon on Courts 7-9 at the Brady Squash Center. The winner will advance to Sunday's national final against either Trinity or Yale. Princeton defeated Harvard 5-4 during the regular season, though Saturday's semifinal will feature only three similar match-ups from the Jadwin showdown on January 13 (Harvard won those at 1 and 6, while Princeton won at 2).
Princeton may have had a bit more drama than it expected early on, as the Diplomats pushed Princeton during the first shift. Sophomore All-America Tyler Osborne took care of business at the No. 3 spot with a 3-0 win, but Michael LeBlanc had to survive four close games before securing his win at the No. 9 position.
The Tigers looked good for a sweep, as Taylor Tutrone led 2-0 at the No. 6 spot, but Alexander Arjoon fought back in the final three games to steal the match and keep F&M within one. At the same time, Mauricio Sedano had taked the first game at No. 2 over Princeton's Samuel Kang, and the first two games at the No. 8 spot had been split.
Ultimately, though, Princeton took control. Kang was strong in his final three games, and Hoffman took wins of 12-10 and 11-8 to close the match at No. 8. Steve Harrington provided the clincher with a dominant effort at the No. 5 spot.
Princeton added nine individual wins in 10 games during the third shift to close out the match and start preparations for the semifinal matchup with Harvard, which shared the Ivy League title with Princeton by going unbeaten in league play the rest of the season.
Princeton 8, Franklin & Marshall 1
1) Todd Harrity (P) d. Guilherme DeMelo 3,5,6
2) Samuel Kang (P) d. Mauricio Sedano (9),0,7,4
3) Todd Harrity (P) d. Ryan Mullaney 9,4,6
4) Dylan Ward (P) d. Pedro Almeida 10,3,3
5) Steve Harrington (P) d. Antonio De La Torre 7,3,9
6) Alexander Arjoon (F&M) d. Taylor Tutrone (9),(10),4,9,6
7) Vivek Dinodia (P) d. Charles Cutler (7),10,4,5
8) David Hoffman (P) d. Brian Henry 7,(7),10,8
9) Michael LeBlanc (P) d. Patrick Cunningham 7,9,(12),8