Women’s Water Polo Sweeps in Los Angeles
The women’s water polo team (21-1) extended its win streak to six en route to sweeping the Loyola Marymount University Zumo Invite in Los Angeles on Friday and Saturday. Friday saw the Tigers first face off against Pomona-Pitzer, in which Princeton started out slowly with only one goal in the first quarter. The Tigers quickly broke a 1-1 tie in the second quarter, rattling off six straight goals in the second quarter to take a 7-1 lead at the half. Both sides would repeat their goal performances in the second half to make the final score 14-2. Princeton then posted its first win over a top-10 team this season, as the tenth-ranked Tigers took down No. 8 Loyola Marymount 9-3. With a 5-2 lead at the half, Princeton shut down Loyola’s offense in allowing just one goal over the final two quarters of play.
Saturday saw the Tigers dominate Sonoma State University and California State University at San Bernardino by margins of 14-3 and 18-4, respectively. Sophomore goalie Ashleigh Johnson posted nine total saves on the day, a fair amount considering she only net-minded for four minutes against CSSB. Sophomore utility Diana Murphy led the offensive attack, racking up five goals on the day as the Tigers improved their season record to 21-1.
Softball Concludes Spring Trip to California at Santa Clara
The softball team took one of its five games at the Santa Clara Tournament over the weekend to conclude its spring trip in California. The Tigers (5-15) started off well on Friday afternoon, as they took down Santa Clara 6-1 to pick up their fifth win of the season. With two outs in the first inning, Princeton capitalized on a Santa Clara University error to score the game’s first run and then added on two more runs in the second inning following two singles, a walk and a passed ball. Freshman right-hander Erica Nori pitched her second complete-game win in a three day span, which lifted her record to 3-2 and lowered her ERA to 0.95. Junior infielder Sarah McGowan led the offensive side, as she went 2-2 with 3 RBIs in the Tigers’ only win of the tournament.
The following four games did not treat the Tigers as well, as they fell in their two games against both Grand Canyon University and the University of California at Berkeley. Princeton fell 9-2 to Grand Canyon on Friday evening immediately after the Santa Clara victory. Saturday treated the Tigers even worse, as run-rule territory caused both games to end early by margins of 11-1 against California and 8-0 against Grand Canyon. Sunday’s 9-0 loss particularly stood out, as Cal’s Stephanie Trzcinski authored the first no-hitter against Princeton in three years.
The Tigers have their first home game of the season on Wednesday against Monmouth University at Class of 1895 Field and kick off their Ivy schedule on Friday with a home doubleheader against Harvard.
Five wins build momentum for men’s volleyball, who look toward rematch with Penn State
Five spring break contests resulted in five wins for men’s volleyball (12-7 overall, 7-2 Eastern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association). After dropping their first five, the Princeton men have won 11 of their last 13, including a sensational five-set home win over Penn State in late February.
The only league contest came in their first contest of the recess. Currently sitting at the bottom of the conference table, Rutgers-Newark (6-11, 0-7 EIVA) fell in straight sets to Princeton by scores of 25-23, 25-18, 25-19. Sophomore hitter Devin Stearns and junior hitter Cody Kessel led the Tigers with 13 and 12 kills, respectively.
Later that day, a matchup with NYU (14-9, 5-6 United Volleyball Conference) provided an opportunity for Princeton to show its depth, with second-team sophomore hitters Mike Bagnell and Zach Shaw leading their side with 11 and 10 kills. Senior libero Bar Shabtai led the defensive effort, tallying a dozen digs in relief of usual starter junior Tony Ensbury. The Tigers won in straight sets by margins of 25-21, 25-20, 27-25.
Following the two tilts in Newark, the men traveled south to North Carolina to face a trio of Conference Carolinas opponents. Pfeiffer University (9-11, 6-4 CC), Barton College (9-14, 5-6 CC) and Mount Olive College (12-10, 9-3 CC) all fell to the Orange and Black visitors by match scores of 3-1. In the first game, Stearns and Kessel again shone on attack with 15 kills each. Senior Davis Waddell and freshman Chris Kennedy were prolific in the set column throughout the trip south. Waddell notched 33 and 50 assists against Barton and Mount Olive, while Kennedy provided 45 against Pfeiffer.
The Tigers will face tough competition in their next matchup, as they face Aaron Russell and the Nittany Lions in State College, Pa., this Friday evening. EIVA standings have Harvard and Princeton just below the perennially dominant Penn State. The next few weeks will decide which of the three top squads will have home-court advantage in the league playoffs at the end of April.
Men’s tennis goes 1-2 in West Coast trip
This past weekend, the Tigers (10-7) traveled west for the University of San Diego Challenge. Current Intercollegiate Tennis Association Rankings have Princeton slated at No. 56.
In their first ever meeting with the Drake University Bulldogs (14-5), Princeton pulled off a pair of doubles wins – the duo of freshman Alex Day and junior Zack McCourt did not finish their pro set at the number one spot. Four decisive singles losses sealed the day however, and Drake came out on top after seven completed matches. Freshman Joshua Yablon pulled off his team’s only solo win, edging Drake’s Matt Frost 7-6, 6-2.
Princeton realized its winning ways the following day against San Diego State (8-8, 3-0 Pacific-12). Despite not pulling off a doubles win over the Aztecs, the Tigers took the two, three, four and five singles matchups. Freshmen Tom Colautti, Yablon and Day all had solo victories.
In their final San Diego match, the Tigers took on the Purdue University Boilermakers (9-3, 1-1 Big Ten). Three singles matches were not played to conclusion, and the No. 40-ranked Indiana University men took five of the remaining six contests. The one win for Princeton came at third singles with the freshmen duo of Colautti and Day, who outmatched their opponents with an 8-0 win.
Ivy League play will begin for the Tigers this weekend. Starting on the road at Penn, the Princeton men will face their seven conference opponents consecutively looking toward NCAA Regionals.
Women’s tennis outmatched by No. 13 Miami, pick up wins over FIU and Maryland
No. 68 women’s tennis (10-5) split a pair of spring break matchups in Coral Gables, Fla., before returning to Jadwin Gymnasium to host Maryland (5-8, 1-6 ACC).
The University of Miami Hurricanes (14-2, 8-0 ACC) proved too much for Princeton, who could only pick up a single win on the day at the sixth singles spot. Senior Katherine Flanigan battled back from a dropped first set to win 5-7, 6-0, 7-5 in the final match of the day. Miami has pulled off 10 straight team wins.
A 4-3 win came the following day for the Tigers over the Florida International University Panthers (6-6). Juniors Lindsay Graff and Joan Cannon pulled off a win at first doubles in a tight 8-7 pro set. Graff also won her matchup at first singles by scores of 6-4, 6-0.
The return to Jadwin saw a similarly strong performance for the Tigers, who took the first singles matchup and spots three through six.
The women will host Fairleigh Dickinson University this Tuesday before moving into their series of seven Ivy League matchups, beginning with a home showdown against Penn this Saturday.