George Washington Uses Top Lineup Strength To Top Men's Squash 5-4
In the final matches of their team careers, seniors Michael LeBlanc and Sam Ezratty both went out as victors. Those wouldn't be enough to land Princeton a second upset win over the weekend, though, as George Washington placed 11th at the CSA team championships with a 5-4 win over 13th-seeded Princeton.
Regardless of the team result, it was a terrific final weekend for LeBlanc, who has been a mainstay in the Tiger lineup since being the lone freshman starter on the 2013 Ivy League championship team. LeBlanc has been Mr. Reliable for Princeton; despite injuries that threatened to end his career, he pushed himself as hard as possible to lead a young Princeton team this season, and his leadership for those underclassmen will help set up the program's bright future. Of course, LeBlanc was focused on the present, Sunday, and he helped give Princeton a strong start with a 3-1 win at the No. 6 spot. LeBlanc had to battle to close out the win over Juan Mejia, which ended with a 14-12 victory in the fourth game.
Junior Ben Leizman also won 3-1 at the No. 9 spot, and that set the table for Ezratty, who has also had to battle back from his own injuries. He dislocated his shoulder late in the regular season and wasn’t even sure he could play in the team championships until the middle of this past week. Ezratty's dedication helped him grind out two wins over the three days, including an 11-2, 11-7, 11-9 victory at the No. 8 spot.
Sophomore Abhimanyu Shah collected his team-best 10th win of the season at the No. 5 spot, which gave Princeton a 4-2 lead, but the Colonials were able to sweep the final shift, including a pair of 3-1 wins, to clinch the victory. The critical match came at the No. 2 spot, where freshman Cody Cortes pushed Oisin Logan deep into the fifth before eventually falling 11-9 in the final game.
GEORGE WASHINGTON 5, PRINCETON 4
1 – Mahmoud Abdel-Maksoud (GW) d. Clark Doyle 9, 7, 6
2 – Oisin Logan (GW) d. Cody Cortes (7), 9, (7), 8, 9
3 – Andres de Frutos (GW) d. Vivek Dinodia 8, 5, (9), 4
4 – Nicolas Valderrama (GW) d. Komron Shayegan (5), 10, 6, 5
5 – Abhimanyu Shah (P) d. James Reiss 8, 3, 5
6 – Michael LeBlanc (P) d. Juan Mejia 4, (8), 7, 12
7 – Billy Berner (GW) d. William Oon 9, (9), 9, 9
8 – Sam Ezratty (P) d. Reid Gifford Beck 2, 7, 9
9 – Ben Leizman (P) d. John Bassett 5, (10), 6, 3