A thrilling 11-9 fifth-set win for junior Casey Cortes was the highlight win for a Princeton women's squash team that stayed in the Ivy League race with a convincing 9-0 sweep of Dartmouth. The Tigers can take an even bigger step in the race Sunday when Princeton takes on Ivy frontrunner Harvard.
Princeton improved to 5-1 overall and 1-1 in the league with Saturday's win. The Tigers won six of the matches by 3-0 scores, but there were several challenges to Princeton throughout the afternoon. Senior Katie Giovinazzo needed to fight through a tough fourth game for a 3-1 win at the No. 2 spot, while Hallie Dewey was also pushed to a fourth game before ultimately winning at the No. 5 spot.
The match of the day was definitely at the No. 8 spot, where Cortes and Marian Lurio were locked in a marathon match. Lurio took the opener 11-8, but Cortes bounced back with wins of 11-6 and 11-8. Lurio claimed another 11-8 win in the fourth, but Cortes has a career filled with five-game wins, and she pulled another one out with an 11-9 fifth set.
"Casey did a good job fighting her way through the match," head coach Gail Ramsay said. "I think she was not really at her best but she did keep pushing herself through some frustrating points."
Junior Julie Cerullo, who will face her stiffest collegiate challenge Sunday, stayed undefeated on the season with an 11-1, 11-8, 11-4 win over Corey Schafer.
"Julie was sharp and focused and was able to keep some real pressure on Schafer," Ramsay said.
Now Cerullo will prepare for Harvard freshman Amanda Sobhy, who made her collegiate debut Saturday in Harvard's 7-2 win over Penn. Sobhy is a former Junior World Champion and ranked internationally in the Top 20, and she helped the Crimson move to 10-0 with her win over Penn's Nabilla Ariffin. The win does help Princeton get control of its own destiny in league play, as Penn handed Princeton its only loss of the season last month.
1) Julie Cerullo d. Corey Schafer 11-1, 11-8, 11-4
2) Katie Giovanizzo d. Becky Lau 11-3, 11-3, 8-11, 11-6
3) Libby Eyre d. Melina Turk 11-7, 11-6, 11-7
4) Lexi Saunders d. Sarah Loucks 11-7, 11-4, 11-7
5) Hallie Dewey d. Oona Morris 11-6, 11-2, 9-11, 11-2
6) Nicole Bunyan d. Helena Darling 11-6, 11-8, 11-6
7) Alex Sawin d. Katherine Nimmo 11-2, 11-2, 11-2
8) Casey Cortes d. Marian Lurio 8-11, 11-6, 11-8, 8-11, 11-9
9) Caroline Feeley d. Julia Watson 11-7, 11-5, 11-7