By Michael T. Bello
Published Oct 15, 2012 at 3:00 PM ET; Updated Oct 6, 2012 at 8:10 PM ET

Northampton, MA — The Smith College Pioneers captured the Epps Cup (D Division) at last season’s Women’s National Team Championships. The Pioneers’ matches got harder throughout the tournament. The finals came down to the wire with the match tied 4-4 with William Smith. Eunice Zhao, this season’s co-captain, won the final match 3-1 to give Smith the D Division title. This season, Smith has only  four returning players. Most teams would be daunted by the prospect of returning only four players, but coach Tim Bacon is excited for the challenge, after all, he states it is “business as usual.” Bacon has a history of teaching players the game and fielding competitive teams. Each season, the WCSA presents the Wetzel Award to a senior who began playing squash in college and has progressed to a high level of skill, demonstrates sound understanding of the game, and exhibits good sportsmanship and a positive demeanor on the court. Smith College and Bacon have four of the eighteen Wetzel Award winners, including last season’s captain, Claire Oblamski. The Pioneers will be looking to defend their Epps Cup title or move up into the C Division this season.

2011-2012 SEASON RECAP

Season Record: 12-13

Final Ranking: 25

Team Championships: 1st in the Epps Cup (D Division)

2012-2013 SEASON PREVIEW

Program Status: Varsity

Head Coach: Tim Bacon

Returning Players from Team Championships: 1. Jacqueline Zhou; 4. Eunice Zhao; 9. Szilvi Kiss (Scholar Athlete); 10. Vivian Lee

Graduated/Non-Returning Players from 2011-2012 Team Championships: 2. Clair Oblamski (Wetzel Award Winner, All-Seven Sisters, Scholar Athlete); 3. Jennifer Krain; 5. Helen Queenan (All-Seven Sisters); 6. Jaimi Inskeep (Scholar Athlete); 7. Catie Blunt (Scholar Athlete); 8. Elena Plesco (Scholar Athlete); 11. Xizhou Zhao (Scholar Athlete)

Captains: Eunice Zhao and Szilvi B. Kiss

Team Goals: To develop players who understand and enjoy the game.

Key Matches: Pioneer Valley Invitational and the Seven Sisters Tournament

To read other team previews, please visit the 2012-2013 College Squash Season Previews page.