NEW YORK Kristen Lange and Lee Rosen are national champions. Although the Penn season does not begin for more than a month, the two Penn athletes laid claim to that title yesterday in New York, where they won the women’s and men’s Under-23 National Championships, respectively. Britt Hebden also competed in the event before losing to eventual tournament runner-up, Julie Cerullo.
“This was a great event for our athletes,” said women’s head coach Jack Wyant. “We got a chance to see them compete early on, and they were able to showcase how much they have improved over the summer.”
Lange entered the event as the women’s top seed. After a first-round bye, she defeated Katie Ballaine, the No. 3 seed, 3, 1, 1. In the semi-finals she took down the eighth-seeded Claire Rein-Weston (4) 2, 5, 1, before knocking out the surprising 12-seeed Cerullo in the finals, (5) 5, 6, 3.
“This was a really positive experience for us,” Wyant said. “They were very successful, but we also got an opportunity to see [Kristen and Britt] in competition and see what they need to work on going into the season.”
Rosen also was the top seed on his side of the draw. After his first-round bye, he defeated the No. 4 seed Franklin Cohen, (0) 8, 2, 0. Robby Berner was next, falling to Rosen 2, 8, 6. In the semifinals, Rosen took out the Jake Gross, 2, 7, 6, and followed that up with a 2, 3, 7 defeat of John Fulham in the finals.
“This was a great accomplishment for Lee,” men’s head coach Craig Thorpe-Clark said. “He played very convincingly all weekend over a very talented field. The win puts him in an elite group of players in college squash. I expect this to be just the beginning of many great wins for Lee this season.”
The squash teams open their season with the annual Ivy Scrimmage, to be held November 10 and 11 on the campus of Yale in New Haven, Conn.