The men’s squash team is going to lose tomorrow.
They’re going to lose 9-0, and there’s a good chance each flight will be a shutout.
Why am I so confident in saying this, especially considering the Quakers have won four in a row and five out of six?
Because they’re playing Trinity (in Hartford, Conn., nonetheless).
We’ve all heard about Trinity and their 211-game winning streak dating back to 1998 (a collegiate record for any sport or division).
But the thing about this streak is just how ridiculously dominant they are. The last time Penn won a flight — a single flight, not the whole match — was Jan. 24, 2004 when the Quakers fell 8-1 at home.
In fact, the Quakers have only won nine total games over the last six years combined versus Trinity, which has won over 160 in that span.
And it’s not just the Red and Blue that get blasted by the Bantams. Take, for example, the match against Yale Wednesday.
With the Bulldogs and Bantams both entering the showdown with undefeated 8-0 records, it was billed as one of the best squash matches of the year and perhaps a chance for the streak to finally come to an end.
Final score: 8-1 Trinity.
Yet the Bantams have gotten to the point where a seven-game victory over arguably the second best team in the nation is considered a tough day.
“It is not going to look very close on the paper but it was very close,” Trinity coach Paul Assaiante told The New Haven Register.
I’d love to be part of a team that considers an 8-1 victory “very close.”
Still, there have been some close calls, especially against Princeton. The most nerve-wracking was last year’s national championship match at the Tigers’ own stadium that went down to game five of the ninth match on the day. But outside of another 5-4 win over the Tigers in 2006, the streak rarely has been in trouble.
And this streak doesn’t really look like it’s ending anytime soon: The Bantams have lost just two flights this year — in addition to Yale, Bates stole a game.
So kudos to Trinity for maintaining one of the most impressive feats in college sports history.
But at the same time, is it really in the best interest of the sport to have such a dominant team?
Last year when the squad won its 200th straight game and then its 11th consecutive national championship, media outlets such as ESPN, CNN and The New York Times ran stories.
And when the streak eventually does end — whether this year, next year or in five years — it probably will get just as much coverage.
Yet until that happens it’s just going to be same old, same old for men’s squash, as the story lines get so repetitive, I can predict the future with 100-percent accuracy.
ZACH KLITZMAN is a senior history major from Bethesda, Md., and is Sports Editor of The Daily Pennsylvanian. His e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.Comments powered by Disqus
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