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Ivies Set for Ancient Eight Play

Ivies Set for Ancient Eight Play

PRINCETON, N.J. -- Ancient Eight play opens this weekend with a battle of 12-win programs on the Ivy League Digital Network. No. 44 Dartmouth (12-2) will look to rebound from just its second loss of the season when it visits Harvard (12-6) on Saturday, April 1. The Crimson lead the all-time series 31-12, though the Big Green have captured three-straight dating back to the 2013-14 season.

BROWN
The Bears sport a 9-4 mark heading into their final non-conference match of the season at Long Beach State on March 30. Brown is riding a three-match winning streak, including a 4-3 win over then-No. 41 and current No. 49 William & Mary on March 25. The victory was Brown’s first over a ranked opponent—the Bears had previously fallen to then-No. 12 and current No. 45 Miami (4-0 on Jan. 28) and current No. 44 Dartmouth (4-1 on Feb. 11). Brown is a perfect 4-0 at home this season and will open its Ivy League slate with back-to-back home matches against Yale on Sunday, April 2, and Harvard on Friday, April 7.

COLUMBIA
Columbia, which sits at 4-10 heading into Ancient Eight play, will open its conference season at Cornell on Saturday, April 1. Eight of the Lions losses have come to teams currently noted in the Oracle/ITA Collegiate Tennis Division I National Team Rankings—No. 50 Florida State (5-2 on Jan. 16), No. 21 Texas (4-1 on Jan. 28), No. 38 Oregon (4-2 on Jan. 29), No. 30 Florida International (4-3 on Feb. 4), No. 44 Dartmouth (4-0 on Feb. 12), No. 11 Kentucky (4-0 on Feb. 24), No. 22 Kansas (4-0 on March 18) and No. 33 TCU (4-0 on March 19). Lion head coach Ilene Weintraub, who is in her 10th year at the helm, needs just three dual meet victories to reach 100 for her career.

CORNELL
The Big Red are riding a six-match winning streak ahead of their Ivy League opener. Cornell has dropped just three points during the six-match stretch. Two of the Big Red’s four losses have been at the hands of teams currently ranked among the Oracle/ITA Top 25—then-No. 5 and current No. 7 Oklahoma State (4-0 on Jan. 28) and current No. 18 Arkansas (7-0 on Feb. 20). The others came in tournament action at the ITA Kickoff Weekend and the ECAC Indoor Championships. Cornell is a perfect 7-0 at home this year and will host Columbia in their Ancient Eight opener on Saturday, April 1.

DARTMOUTH
The Big Green are the Ivy League’s lone ranked team at No. 44 in this week’s Oracle/ITA rankings. Dartmouth has been listed in six-straight polls since cracking the Top 25 on Feb. 21, when it earned a season-high No. 20 nod. Each of the Big Green’s losses have been to teams that currently appear in the Oracle/ITA rankings—current No. 49 William & Mary (6-1 on Feb. 18) and then-No. 46 and current No. 41 Denver (4-3 on March 24). Dartmouth boasts a 12-2 overall mark and is coming off one of just two losses during the 2017 campaign. The Big Green will look to rebound on Saturday, April 1, when they visit Harvard in their Ivy League opener.

HARVARD
Harvard boasts a 12-6 record entering League play with the aforementioned match against No. 44 Dartmouth on Saturday, April 1. The Crimson had their eight-match winning streak snapped by then-No. 41 William & Mary, 4-3, on March 26. The loss was 1-of-4 for the Crimson to teams currently noted in the Oracle/ITA rankings—No. 40 Northwestern (6-1 on Jan. 21), No. 34 Alabama (4-0 on Jan. 28), No. 50 Florida State (4-1 on Jan. 29) and No. 49 William and Mary (4-3 on March 26). Harvard is off to its best start since 2009-2010, as it carries a League-best 12 wins into Ancient Eight play, alongside No. 44 Dartmouth.

PENN
The Quakers claim a 7-6 mark as they prepare to host Princeton in their Ancient Eight opener on Saturday, April 1. Penn has played six matches against teams currently ranked among the top 50 in the Oracle/ITA rankings, including a win over current No. 50 Florida State (5-2 on March 12). Of their five losses to current ranked teams, Penn claims a pair of 4-3 defeats against current No. 32 Virginia (Feb. 18) and current No. 30 Florida International (March 8). The others were 4-0 losses to current No. 10 Georgia Tech (Jan. 28) and current No. 11 Kentucky (Jan. 29) and a 6-1 defeat at the hands of current No. 37 Maryland (Feb. 25).

PRINCETON
Reigning Ivy League champion Princeton owns a 9-6 overall record as it prepare for its aforementioned Ivy League opener at Penn on Saturday, April 1. The Tigers boast a three-match winning streak heading into Ancient Eight competition, having swept their spring break trip to California. Five of Princeton’s losses have come against teams currently listed among the top 50 in the Oracle/ITA rankings—No. 25 Texas A&M (4-0 on Feb. 2), No. 47 Rice (4-0 on Feb. 3), No. 29 Wake Forest (5-2 on Feb. 5), No. 11 Kentucky (4-0 on Feb. 26) and No. 37 Maryland (5-2 on March 5). The Tigers only other loss was to Cornell, 4-2, in the ECAC Indoor Championships.

YALE
The Bulldogs posted a 7-9 mark in non-conference competition this season. Four of Yale’s losses have been to teams currently noted in the Oracle/ITA rankings—No. 29 Wake Forest (7-0 on Feb. 3), No. 4 North Carolina (4-0 on Feb. 10), No. 12 Auburn (4-1 on Feb. 11) and No. 28 Ole Miss (4-0 on Feb. 12). After starting the season 0-7, Yale has rebounded to win 7-of-9 matches since Feb. 26. The Bulldogs had their season-best five-match winning streak snapped by Loyola Marymount, 4-3 on March 15, but carry a new two-match winning streak into their Ivy League opener at Brown on Sunday, April 2.