Laura Gemmell reached the quarterfinals of the CSA Individual National Championships for the fourth straight year (Gil Talbot).
HARTFORD, Conn. – Sophomore Amanda Sobhy and senior Laura Gemmell are still in contention to win the College Squash Association Individual National Championship after the opening day of the Ramsay Division at the George A. Kellner Squash Center.
Sobhy, the reigning national champion and top overall seed in the tournament, breezed into the quarterfinals. She swept Yale's Gwendoline Tilghman, 11-2, 11-2, 11-1, and Penn's Rachel Goh, 11-3, 11-3, 11-4, to advance. She'll take on Cornell's Danielle Letourneau in her next match at 12:30 p.m. Saturday. With a win, she would advance to the tournament semifinals against Yan Xin Tan of Penn or Julie Cerullo of Princeton at 5:30 p.m.
Gemmell also managed to reach the quarterfinals for the fourth time in her collegiate career with a pair of victories. She began the day by outlasting Natalie Babjukova of Trinity, 13-11, 11-8, 12-10, in the opening round before toppling Cornell's Jesse Pacheco, 11-8, 11-6, 7-11, 11-6. She'll face another Bantam in the semifinals in No. 3 Kanzy El Defrawy at 1:15 p.m. A win would send her into the semifinals against No. 2 Millie Tomlinson of Yale or Elizabeth Eyre of Princeton at 6:15 p.m.
Haley Mendez nearly joined her teammates in the quarterfinals. She won her opening match versus Penn's Haidi Lala, 10-12, 11-8, 11-7, 11-6, before succumbing to El Defraway, 11-4, 11-7, 11-5, in the quarterfinals. Mendez is now in the second round consolation bracket, and she'll face Pacheco at 2:15 p.m. tomorrow.
While Mendez won her first match, Natasha Kingshott and Michelle Gemmell suffered setbacks in both of their matches to end up in a consolation match against each other. Kingshott fell to Penn's Yan Xin Tan, 11-3, 11-2, 9-11, 11-3, while Michelle Gemmell fell to Catalina Pelaez of Trinity, 11-8, 11-9, 11-6. In the matchup between the two Crimson, Gemmell, the freshman, got the better of the senior Kingshott, 11-4, 11-13, 11-7, 11-2, to advance to the consolation quarterfinals versus Rachel Leizman of Princeton.
In the Holleran Division, Julianne Chu reached the round of 16. She received a bye in the opener before handling Michaela Martin of Bowdoin, 11-6, 13-11, 11-0. The Harvard sophomore will face Yale's Annie Ballaine in the round of eight at 11:45 a.m. Saturday.