By Anne Bello
Published Oct 1, 2010 at 7:00 AM ET; Updated Sep 25, 2010 at 5:13 PM ET

Ithaca, NY — Two years ago, Cornell leapfrogged a number of schools to move from tenth in the nation to sixth, moving back into the “A” Division after a number of years in the “B” Division. The Big Red showed last season that they have what it takes to compete for the Howe Cup, finishing seventh, and this year they want to establish themselves as a regular top-eight presence.

Key matches for Cornell will be with Ivy rivals Dartmouth and Brown, who finished 1-2 in the Kurtz Cup and will be looking for berths in the “A” Division. Although Stanford isn’t on the Big Red’s regular season schedule, that could be a key match if the two teams meet again at championships. Cornell defeated Stanford 6-3 at the beginning of last season, but were edged out by the Cardinal 5-4 in the second round of the Women’s National Team Championships.

The Big Red will have four new players on the roster to help them continue their improvement. Sophomore Sydney Chirls has transferred from Duke, which does not have an established competitive squash team, and should play at the bottom of the ladder. Amherst Central alum Laura Caty, who was ranked #29 GU19 in the US, and Kristin Scillia, a Pingry grad who was ranked #46 GU19, should also add depth to the bottom third of the Big Red’s lineup. A third first-year player, Jesse Pacheco, comes to Cornell from St. George’s with a GU19 ranking of 11th and should play somewhere in the middle of the ladder.

The Big Red, who will be led by captains Jennifer Gemmell and Lauren Sachvie, have lost four seniors to graduation: number 1 Rebecca Hazell, number 5 Liza Stokes, number 6 Rachel Wagner, and number 8 Maxi Prinsen. All four players received team awards last season. Wagner was named the team’s MVP and had the best record at 12-4, and the team named Stokes, who co-captained the team with Sachvie, the most improved player. Prinsen and Hazell were co-recipients of the Match of the Season award: Hazell for her 2-3 loss to fifth-ranked Toby Eyre of Williams and Prinsen for her 3-2 win over Stanford’s Katie Corelli at Howe Cup. The team sportsmanship award went to first-year Jaime Laird, who along with 2007-2008 All-American Shivangi Paranjpe should be back at the top of the Big Red’s ladder this season.

2009-2010 SEASON RECAP

Season Record: 9-7
Final Ranking: 7
Team Championships: 7th Over All; 7th in Howe Cup (A Division)

2010-2011 SEASON PREVIEW

Program Status: Varsity

Head Coach: Julee Devoy

Returning Players from Team Championships: Clare Berner; Jennifer Gemmell (4); Lexi Glassman (10); Jaime Laird (2); Shivangi Paranjpe (3); Maggie Remsen (9); Lauren Sachvie (7; 2009-2010 Captain); Izzy Spyrou

Graduates on Last Season’s Team Championships Roster: Rebecca Hazell (1); Maxi Prinsen (8); Liza Stokes (5; 2009-2010 Captain); Rachel Wagner (6)

Additions to the 2010-2011 Roster:

  • Expected to play in the middle 3: Jesse Pacheco
  • Expected to play in the bottom 3: Laura Caty, Kristin Scillia, and Sydney Chirls

Captains: Jennifer Gemmell and Lauren Sachvie

Team Goals: Stay in the top 8

Key Matches: Stanford, Dartmouth, and Brown

To read other team previews, please visit the 2010 – 2011 College Squash Preview Page.