This week marks the start of the winter season for various sports—two weeks early, due to the loss of the season last winter. For many teams, this is the first official competition season since March 2020. As the seasons begin, keep an eye out for these upcoming games and rivalries.
Swimming & Diving
The swim team dives into the season on Nov. 20 with a home meet against Bates College and Wheaton College. The team of nearly 80 students is especially large this year, so everyone will be competing day-in and day-out to earn their position on the pool deck or the diving board. This atmosphere should lay the foundation for an especially interesting season for the Red and Black. This year’s team is headed by Mengmeng Gibbs ’22, Rachel Cetron ’22, Rachel Townsend ’22, Talia Lanckton ’22, Julian DeMann ’22, and Richard Ettinger ’23.
The Cardinals will begin the season as road warriors, taking on the Upstate New York trio of St. Lawrence College, Hamilton College, and Hobart College on the weekend of Dec. 4. After a brief respite in Middletown against Conn. College, the team begins January with contests against Franklin & Marshall University, Denison University, and Georgetown University in Amherst, MA. The Little Three Championship, however, will be played on a friendly court at home in the Rosenbaum Squash Center, as will two high-profile matchups against New York City’s Fordham University and New York University on Jan. 30. Any Wesleyan first-years with a grudge to settle will have their chance at the Cardinals’ Feb. 9 home matchup against Brown University.
With the class of 2021 now graduated, there is space at the top of the ladder as the squash team takes shape for the upcoming year. The team has more depth than in past years with returning players filling out the ladder, and although the top positions have big shoes to fill, a strong class of underclassman look to step up. The season kicks off on Nov. 20 against lower-ranked Mount Holyoke, but the team’s first home match is on Dec. 8 against NESCAC rival Connecticut College.
Men’s Ice Hockey
The last time the men’s ice hockey team took the ice, they won the program’s first NESCAC championship. While the team has some new faces this time around, the momentum from the 2019-20 season should position the Cards to continue where they left off. The Red and Black first drop the puck on Nov. 19 against Tufts before turning around the next day to play Conn. College. These games will be crucial in setting the tone for the season.
Women’s Ice Hockey
After a disappointing end to the 2020 season, the women’s team is ready to bounce back under the leadership of captains Ally Detre ’22, Calista Stevens ’22, and Audrey McMahon ’22. The first competitions will be back-to-back home games against Bowdoin on Nov. 19 and 20.
The team will spend their first game taking on Albright College at the Vassar Tip-Off Tourney on Nov. 12, and make their Silloway Gymnasium debut on Nov. 17 in a game against the Purchase College Panthers. Things may become even easier from there for the Cardinals; don’t expect the Nov. 20 matchup against the Pratt Institute, a school better known for buckets of paint instead of buckets on the court, to be particularly competitive. As usual, the real competition begins in January, with a full NESCAC slate scheduled.
Women’s basketball opens the season with matchups against unfamiliar, out-of-conference opponents. At the Susquehanna Tip-Off Tournament on Nov. 13, the Cardinals will take on the University of Mary Washington, followed by either Susquehanna University or William Paterson University. The next weekend, the Red and Black will host Hartwick College before playing Russell Sage College on Sunday afternoon. The contests should provide an early-season warm up before a brutal January stretch, in which six out of seven opponents will be NESCAC foes. For any Wes Women’s basketball-obsessed Manhattan residents looking to visit home before finals week, you’ll be in luck; New York University is set to play the Cardinals in the Big Apple on Dec. 3.
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