Bard College announced on Tuesday that it is adding women’s squash as a varsity program for the 2017-18 season.
Bard joins the University of Virginia in elevating its club program to varsity status for the upcoming season.
Current Bard men’s coach Craig Thorpe-Clark will coach the women’s team.
“The time is right, and we have the right coach in place to make this happen,” Bard Athletic Director Kris Hall said in a statement. “The nucleus of players returning have shown a commitment to hard work; their overall improvement and dedication will be the foundation of the new program.”
The addition of Bard will also recommence the Liberty League conference tournament, which stopped its tournament after the 2009-10 season because there were only three member schools remaining—St. Lawrence, Vassar and William Smith. But with Bard joining the league, the conference tournament is set to recommence.
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“This is a great step forward to Bard women’s squash,” said head coach Thorpe-Clark. “The athletic department and Bard as a whole has shown complete support.”
Bard becomes the eleventh school to add varsity squash since 1993. There are now 31 women’s intercollegiate squash teams.