The score line did not look pretty for the Quakers this weekend.
On Saturday afternoon, Penn (3-6, 0-2 Ivy) took on second-ranked and undefeated Trinity (8-0) at Ringe Squash Courts. The Red and Blue lost all nine matches to the Bantams, with only four game victories for the day.
The Quakers already knew they’d have a tough time heading into this weekend’s match-up.
“We went up against a team that has a great chance to win its 14th national championship in 15 years today,” coach Jack Wyant said.
But this knowledge helped the team adjust its perspective on the match.
“We knew that [Trinity] is one of the top teams in the country, so I think we went in there knowing [that] the pressure really wasn’t on us and that gave us a little bit of an edge,” senior captain Danny Greenberg added. “We could just go out there and play our game and focus and not be overly worked up about results.”
Greenberg scored one of Penn’s only game wins of the day. The team’s No. 1 went 1-3 against Trinity’s Reinhold Hergeth, taking the third game of the set, 11-7.
“In the third game, I was just a little bit more focused on taking the ball early, taking him to the back of the court and controlling the ‘T,’” Greenberg said. “I put a little bit more pressure on him but I just couldn’t hold on in the fourth.”
The other Penn victories came from freshman Tyler Odell and junior Daniel Judd.
At No. 8, Odell took on Matthew Mackin and also went 1-3, winning the second game with a 11-9 score. It was only his third loss this season and his first since the team faced Harvard earlier this month.
Judd kept the heat at No. 9, taking two victories in the first three games with 11-7 and 11-6, respectively, but he ultimately couldn’t close it out, falling to Juan Lopez.
“They kept those guys out on court for a long time,” Wyant said. “Our boys did a good job of fighting hard till the end and making [Trinity] earn their victory.”
As for the rest of the season, Wyant saw this match as a positive sign.
“[We] executed our game plan better than [we] have probably in any match this year,” Wyant said. “There’s a lot left for this team to play for.”
And for Greenberg, these last few matches have been a learning experience. As the sole senior on the squad, he hopes to use them to get some wins in his last season.
“I’d like to end this season on a high note — come back from these last couple of losses, learn something from them and hopefully move forward to gain some positive wins,” Greenberg said.
The team goes on to play the undefeated Tigers next Wednesday at the Jadwin Squash Courts in Princeton, NJ.