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Busy Weekend Ahead for No. 5 Men’s Squash

Nigel Koh is 3-0 in the No. 3 position this season (photo courtesy Gil Talbot).

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. - The Harvard men's squash team continues its busiest week of the season with six matches this weekend. The contests are part of a five-day stretch when the Crimson will play a total of eight matches, nearly half of the scheduled 17-match regular season slate. During the run, the Crimson will complete the rare feat of playing a home, away and neutral site match in the same day (Dec. 3).

Harvard (3-0, 1-0 Ivy) opens the weekend Friday night as NYU visits the Murr Center, before competing against five Massachusetts institutions during the remainder of the weekend. The Crimson starts at home Saturday with Amherst at 11 a.m. before traveling to MIT to face the Engineers on the road at 2 p.m. and rounding out the day with a neutral-site contest against Boston College at 4:30 p.m. The weekend concludes with another match at MIT, this time against Northeastern, Sunday at 11:30 a.m. and a duel with Boston University at the Murr Center at 4 p.m.

Schedule
Dec. 2 – NYU – 5 p.m.
Dec. 3 – Amherst – 11 a.m.
                  at MIT – 2 p.m.
                  vs. Boston College (at MIT) – 4:30 p.m.
Dec. 4 – vs. Northeastern (at MIT) – 11:30 a.m.
                  Boston University – 4 p.m. 

No. 5 Harvard
The Crimson enters the weekend at 3-0 overall and 1-0 in the Ivy League and ranked No. 5 in the Collegiate Squash Association (CSA) poll. Harvard opened with its typical winning start with a 9-0 win over No. 10 Williams, its 34th consecutive season-opening victory. The Crimson returned 13 players from last year's squash that finished 9-6 overall and 3-3 in Ivy play.

Last Time Out
The No. 5 Harvard men's squash team downed No. 7 Dartmouth, 8-1, and No. 14 Middlebury, 9-0, Wednesday. Brandon McLaughlin, Nicholas Hopcroft and Thomas Mullaney got the Crimson started with a 3-0 lead against Dartmouth in a match that used the three-court system, as Harvard cruised to the victory. In the shutout of Middlebury, the Crimson received strong play from the No. 6-8 positions. Zeke Scherl swept his match at No. 6, 11-6, 11-8, 11-9, and Mullaney and Julian Kirby breezed through their matches at No. 7 and 8, respectively.

New York University
The Bobcats squash program is currently classified as an emerging club team by the CSA. 

Harvard and NYU have met once before on the squash court, with the Crimson taking a 4-1 win in 1973.

Amherst
Amherst (1-0) finished 2010-11 with a 14-9 record, its best season since 1997. The Lord Jeffs return six players to its lineup, but lost the team's top three to graduation. Amherst, who is ranked 21st in the latest CSA rankings, opened the 2011-12 campaign with a 9-0 shutout of Vassar Nov. 30.

The Crimson has won 47 matches over the Lord Jeffs since 1941 without dropping a match.

MIT
The Engineers (1-3) enter the weekend on a three-game skid after a win in the season-opener over Haverford, 9-0. Austin Anderson is off to the team's best start with a 2-2 record in the No. 3 position. MIT finished 2010-11 ranked No. 34 and has assumed the same spot in this year's poll. 

The Crimson is 51-2 all-time against MIT and has not dropped a match since 1955. 

Boston College
Boston College's club squash team finished 37th in the nation each of the past two seasons and enters 2011-12 ranked No. 36. 

This will be the first meeting between Harvard and BC in men's squash.

Northeastern
The Huskies enter the weekend at 0-5 overall after losing to Bates, Stanford, Wesleyan, Colby and Connecticut College. Northeastern is No. 31 in the CSA poll. 

Northeastern and Harvard have never met in men's squash.

Boston University
Boston University has started the 2011-12 campaign with a 2-1 record, with wins over Bryant and Vermont. The Terriers are ranked No. 48 by the CSA. 

This will be Harvard's first contest in the program's history against Boston University.

Next Up
The Crimson will take over one month off before starting its Ivy League schedule against Penn Jan. 14.