PRINCETON, N.J. - What a difference a year can make.  In its first season as a varsity program, the Columbia women's squash team has improved greatly over the course of the year, finishing the regular season ranked No. 14 in the country with a 12-3 overall record.  This weekend, the Lions will compete at the Women's National Team Championships held at Princeton University February 18-20.

This year's tournament features 39 teams that will participate in five divisions: Howe Cup (A Division), Kurtz Cup (B Division), Walker Cup (C Division), Epps Cup (D Division), and the E Division. Each division is made up of eight teams (except the E Division which has six) based off the most recent national rankings.

Last season (competing as a club), Columbia won the Epps Cup (D division) after it finished 5-10 overall.  Coming into the 2010-11 season, the Lions set a goal to compete and finish in the high "C" or low "B" division - and that they did.

In addition to Columbia, also competing for the Kurtz Cup (B Division) is fellow Ivy League foe Brown (#9), Middlebury (#10), Williams (#11), Bates (#12), Amherst (#13), Mount Holyoke (#15) and George Washington (#16).

First up for the Lions is Williams College, currently ranked No. 11 in the nation.  The two teams, who have not faced each other yet this season, will square off on Friday, February 18 at 2 p.m. The match will take place in Jadwin Gymnasium at Princeton University on courts 7-9 at 2 p.m.  Columbia's second match will take place at 4:30 p.m. on Saturday.

Brackets are available here.