Following a solid winter on the courts last winter, the Middlebury women's squash team looks ready to build on those successes in 2017-18. A season ago, the women posted nine team victories against a demanding schedule, including a seven-match winning streak to begin the month of January. The team finished 16th nationally at the conclusion of the 2016-17 campaign and returns seven of the nine regulars to the court this season.
Guided by third-year head coach and the reigning NESCAC Coach of the Year Mark Lewis, the roster is laden with talent and experience from top to bottom.
The squad will be led by senior captain Lucy Bostwick. She was a solid presence in the ladder last year with a 7-7 record in the #6 position and a perfect 5-0 mark at #8.
Junior Beatrijs Kuijpers, a two-time All-NESCAC selection who earned a first-team nod last winter, anchored the top spot in the lineup with an 11-12 mark in 2016-17 and played in the CSA Individual National tournament. She will join the team in 2018 after studying abroad during the fall. Classmate Alexa Comai produced an 8-15 record mainly at #3, also taking part in the individual national tournament.
In addition to the aforementioned players, the Panthers will have numerous returners who will battle for spots in the ladder after seeing time on the courts. Sophomore Anne Glassie played the #2 spot in the lineup last winter, competing in the CSA Individual Championships claiming the consolation title.
Sophomore Mira Chugh produced an 8-13 record in the #5 spot during her first season, while senior Caroline Jahrling (11-6) solidified the seventh position. Sophomore Natasha Lowitt (12-9) and senior Lily Bogle (2-4) anchored the bottom of the lineup for the Panthers.
Seniors Hope Matthews and Lizzie Hurst along with junior Victoria Villalba, who is studying abroad this fall, will add experienced presences. Lewis has brought in a talented group of first-year players who will also compete for playing time for the Panthers.
The Panthers' slate opens with two road matches at Hamilton on Saturday, December 2, followed by the home-opening match at home a week later against Dartmouth. After the calendar flips to 2018, the Panthers will play 10 matches during the month of January, including seven of them on the road. A key date on the schedule is the NESCAC Championships taking place from February 2-4 at Hamilton.