EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

April 28, 2014

Merrimack women win NE-10 tennis title

The Eagle-Tribune

---- — MIDDLETON – Merrimack College won its first Northeast-10 women’s tennis championship yesterday at the Northeast Tennis Center in Middleton, defeating No. 2 Adelphi, 5-3. The Warriors finished the season perfect (12-0) in conference play.

The Warriors trailed, 3-2, before winning three straight singles matches to claim the title.

“It’s all about their heart,” first-year head coach Peter Arsenault said. “It was a brilliant effort. I couldn’t be prouder of the way they fought back today. All year this team has showed great heart, but to watch them come back the way they did, and to win a championship, I’m truly humbled by their effort. I was blessed with a great group.”

Merrimack’s overall record improved to 15-4. Last season, the Warriors finished 8-12 and didn’t qualify for the NE-10 tournament. The Warriors returned their entire roster from last season, adding freshman Grace Messina, whose sister, Shakee, is a junior.

Grace’s win clinched the victory for the Warriors.

“The girls put in the work,” Arsenault said. “I really felt like this could be a breakout year for our women’s team, but you don’t really know until you start to see how they perform. They took their punches last year, they learned from it, and they put the effort in. This is a reward for not only how they played this year, but how they prepared over the summer and last spring for this season.”

The Warriors advance to the NCAA tournament and will find out their first-round opponent as part of the NCAA selection show on Tuesday at 8:30 p.m.