Men's Tennis Falls Short, 5-4, to SNHU in NE-10 Championship Saturday

WARRIORS EDGED IN NE-10 TITLE MATCH BY PENMEN, AWAITS NCAA SELECTION SHOW NEXT MONDAY

NORTH ANDOVER, Mass. – Down 4-2, the Merrimack College men's tennis team rallied back to take No. 5 and No. 6 singles to tie the match at four, but the Warriors' rally came to end in the No. 4 singles as Vince Bellino (Amesbury, Mass.) was defeated in the tiebreaker match and Merrimack fell 5-4 to second seeded Southern New Hampshire in the Northeast-10 Championship match.

The Basics
Score: Southern New Hampshire 5, Merrimack 4
Records:
 #1 Merrimack (13-8) | #2 Southern New Hampshire (18-5)
Location:
 Northeast Tennis Center | Middleton, Mass.

2014 Northeast-10 Championship Schedule/Results

Tuesday, April 22 – First Round
Match 1: #3 Bentley 5, #6 Assumption 0
Match 2: #4 Adelphi 5, #5 Stonehill 2

Thursday, April 24 – Semifinals
Match 3: #4 Adelphi 1, at #1 Merrimack 5
Match 4: #3 Bentley 1, #2 Southern New Hampshire 5

Saturday, April 26 – Championship
Match 5: #2 Southern New Hampshire 5, #1 Merrimack 4

How it Happened

The Warriors' grabbed a pair of victories in doubles play to grab a 2-1 lead at the beginning of singles action.

The top duo of Chris Barnhart (Longmeadow, Mass.) and Matt Pronesti (Mission Viejo, Calif.) edged SNHU's Mitch Dobek and Mike Wallace 8-5 at the No. 1 position. Freshman duo James Barnhart (Longmeadow, Mass.) and Nick Majewski (Brewster, Mass.) claimed a 8-1 victory at the third doubles match.

Down by one, Southern New Hampshire rallied back with three straight wins in No. 1, No. 2, and No. 3 singles until Merrimack tied the match at four leaving the tiebreaker up to No. 4 singles.

Dobek tied the match for SNHU by earning a 6-4, 6-2 win at No. 1 singles over Pronesti. SNHU's Mike Wallace extended the Penmens' lead, 3-2, after he posted a 6-4, 6-4 win at No. 3 over C. Barnhart.

The Penmen continued to dominate in the match as Arango-Campo made it 4-2 with a 6-4, 7 6 (7-1) win over sophomore Miguel Belfort (Caracas, Venezuela) at No. 2 singles. J. Barnhart took a 6-0, 6-0 win at No. 5 and Majewski a 6-1, 6-1 triumph at No. 6 to tie the match.

In the final match of the day, Mukdaprakorn won the first set 6-2  before Bellino rallied to tie the match 6-6 and force a tiebreaker. Bellino was able to post a 7-4 win in the tiebreak, but Mukdaprakorn came back in the third set to tie Bellino.

In the final set, Bellino jumped out to a 4-2 lead before Mukdaprakorn reeled off five straight points to give Southern New Hampshire the title.

Results

Doubles

1. Matt Pronesti/Chris Barnhart (MER) def. Mitch Dobek/Mike Wallace (SNH) 8-5
2. Juan Arango-Campo/Alex Mukdaprakorn (SNH) def. Miguel Belfort/Vince Bellino (MER) 8-4

3. James Barnhart/Nick Majewski (MER) def. Evan Eaton/Mark Dobek (SNH) 8-1

Singles

1. Mitch Dobek (SNH) def. Matt Pronesti (MER) 6-4, 6-2
2. Juan Arango-Campo (SNH) def. Miguel Belfort (MER) 6-4, 7-6 (7-1)
3. Mike Wallace (SNH) def. Chris Barnhart (MER) 6-4, 6-4
4. Alex Mukdaprakorn (SNH) def. Vince Bellino (MER) 6-2, 6-7 (4-7), 7-6 (7-4)
5. James Barnhart (MER) def. Evan Eaton (SNH) 6-0, 6-0
6. Nick Majewski (MER) def. Mark Dobek (SNH) 6-1, 6-1

What They Said

"This has been an outstanding season for this team and I am extremely proud of every player," said head coach Peter Arsenault. "We achieved numerous team goals this year and these six players worked very hard to win this year."

Up Next

The Warriors will now await their postseason fate by means of the NCAA Selection Show on Monday evening to see whether or not they will earn a spot in the NCAA Division II Tennis Tournament.

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