ANNAPOLIS, Md. - Still in the infancy of its life as a varsity program, the Drexel squash program got a big victory over the weekend when the men's team edged 27th-ranked Georgetown at the Navy Round Robin, 5-4. The men also boasted a 7-2 triumph over the University of Washington to wrap up their weekend, meanwhile dropping matches to George Washington and Hobart. The women's squad fell in both their matches this weekend, 9-0 to Georgetown and George Washington.
On the men's side, the day on Saturday did not open the way they might have hoped, as George Washington handed the Dragons their first 9-0 shutout defeat of the season. Drexel showed serious resolve after that, however, taking on a top-30 team in Georgetown and knocking them off, 5-4.
In the first round of matches, Kevin Sacherman got the scoring started for Drexel, winning 11-4, 11-3, 11-2 at No. 9, the first off the court. After Vinayak Kalani fell in a tightly-contested battled at No. 6, Nick DiDonato gave the Dragons the early 2-1 edge with his 11-9, 11-8, 10-12, 11-6 thriller at No. 3.
Despite playing with a nagging injury, Sebastian Dangond Gala got things off to a good start in the second wave of matches, putting the Dragons up 3-1 with his 11-9, 13-11, 11-8 triumph at No. 2. Nakul Jain also got the Dragons a point in this set of matches, winning a grueling four-set match at No. 8, 10-12, 11-8, 11-8, 16-14.
Needing just one more point to clinch the match, the Dragons relied on their top player, Justin Singh, who spared everyone the suspense by racing through his match at the top spot on the ladder, 11-2, 11-3, 11-5.
The Dragons' other victory came against Washington, which was ranked two spots ahead of the Dragons coming into the weekend. Playing a five-court system, the Dragons took three of the first five matches, with Paul Jamrgowicz at No, 9, Kevin Sacherman at No. 8 and Matt Schreffler at No. 6 giving Drexel the early 3-2 edge.
Leading 3-2 heading into the final four matches of the day, Kalani and Jain were the first two off the court, with Jain winning 10-12, 11-3, 11-7, 11-5 to clinch the victory for the Dragons. Singh and Ben Bevan both played aggressively with the match in hand, winning at No. 1 and No. 3, respectively, to provide the final margin.
On the women's side, Drexel played twice on Saturday, falling 9-0 in both outings. Davila Thompson provided a bright spot, improving against highly-ranked opponents as both of her sets progresssed. Zeba Ahmed lost a hard-fought battle at No. 9 against George Washington, 6-11, 9-11, 8-11.
Making their first appearances for the Dragons were Courtney Sabo and Sofia Sanguinetti, who performed capably against George Washington. Sabo fell at No. 5, 8-11, 6-11, 2-11, while Sanguinetti, who also stars on the field hockey field for Drexel, fell 5-11, 3-11, 6-11.