The men’s squash team made an appearance in the NESCAC semifinals over the weekend, eventually settling for an impressive third place finish in the conference tournament.
Bates began the tournament in the quarterfinals against Wesleyan.
Led by freshman Ahmed Abdel Khalek, the Bobcats easily took down the Cardinals by a score of 7-2.
Khalek won in straight sets, 11-6, 11-2, 11-5.
Bates also won 3-0 decisions at the No. 3 through No. 8 positions in a dominating performance.
Senior captain Walter Cabot, senior R.J. Keating, sophomore Andy Cannon, sophomore Nabil Saleem, freshman Filip Michalsky, and freshman Caran Arora all won their matches.
The win against Wesleyan moved the Bobcats into the semifinals, where they squared off with the Ephs of Williams College, seeded second in the tournament.
The skill of Bates’ freshman class was on full display in the match; the freshman trio of Khalek, Michalsky, and Arora were the only players to score wins in the match.
Khalek, playing No. 1, won easily in three sets, 11-3, 11-7, 11-3, while Michalsky and Arora both won four set matches playing at No. 7 and No. 8, respectively.
Cabot said, “we had hopes of beating Williams, and were pretty disappointed it didn’t happen. We’re definitely looking forward to getting another shot at Williams in nationals, it’s always a lot of fun playing them.”
Despite the disappointment of missing out on the conference finals, the Bobcats were still able to regroup for the third place game against Middlebury.
Avenging losses in the NESCAC tournament in 2011 and 2012, the men’s squash team flattened the Panthers on Sunday, taking the match 7-2 to clinch a third-place finish in the league.
Led by Khalek, the Bobcats, seeded #3 in the tournament, took down the Panthers, who were ranked #4.
Khalek scored an easy 11-6, 11-3, 11-7 victory at the No. 1 spot, continuing his outstanding freshman season.
Scoring four-set wins were junior Kristian Muldoon at No. 2 (15-13, 7-11, 13-11, 11-6) and senior captain Walter Cabot at No. 3 (11-5, 4-11, 11-7, 11-9).
Sophomore Andy Cannon (playing at No. 5) and freshman Filip Michalsky (playing at No. 7) also notched wins.
“Beating Middlebury 7-2 made the tournament a little sweeter,” said Cabot, also adding “it’s good to see that we’re coming into form at the end of the season.”
Having won five of their last seven matches, the Bobcats (12-9) will travel to Colby to play their final team match of the season on Wednesday at 6 PM.
The team will then have some time off to prepare for individual and team nationals.