Women’s Tennis Nabs First Conference Win, Tops Assumption 7-2

WORCESTER, MA – The Merrimack women's tennis team started the 2011 dual match slate with a 7-2 victory at Assumption Sunday afternoon. The Warriors begin the season 1-0 overall and in the Northeast-10 Conference. The Greyhounds slip to 1-2 on the year and 0-1 in the league.

Merrimack captured a pair of wins in doubles play to hold a 2-1 edge heading into singles action. Mollie Fitzgerald (Melrose, MA) and Kara Hole (Portsmouth, RI) claimed an 8-1 decision at the second slot. Kylie Waddington (South Glastonbury, CT) and Alyx Barnes (Portsmouth, NH) prevailed at the No. 3 position with an 8-1 victory.

In her first collegiate match at the No. 1 singles spot, rookie Shakee Messina (Caracas, Venezuela) picked up a 6-2, 6-3 win over Chrissy Lyons. Hole cruised to a 6-2, 6-0 victory at the second singles position, downing Jen Erickson.

Courtney Garvey (Woburn, MA) edged Erica Micciche at the No. 3 singles match 6-4 in the first set before allowing three points in a tiebreaker to decide the second. In the fourth singles slot, Barnes rebounded from dropping the first set 6-1 to capture a pair of 7-5 results to claim the match.

Fitzgerald defeated Assumption's Paige Gilet 6-3, 6-0 at the No. 5 position for Merrimack. Waddington took the first set 6-3 at the sixth singles spot but the Marissa Charles triumphed in the second and third sets to claim the Greyhounds' second point.

"Our team played really well today in the first conference match," said head coach Sean Tully. "This was an important match for us and we did a great job of coming out and getting the win to start the year 1-0 in the conference."

The Warriors are booked for a return trip to Worcester next weekend. Merrimack is set to battle Division I opponent Holy Cross September 30.

1. Lyons/Erickson (ASM) def. Messina/Garvey (MER) 8-2
2. Fitzgerald/Hole (MER) def. Blaisdell/Micciche (ASM) 8-1
3. Waddington/Barnes (MER) def. Hall/Charles (ASM) 8-1

1. Messina (MER) def. Lyons (ASM) 6-2, 6-3
2. Hole (MER) def. Erickson (ASM) 6-2, 6-0
3. Garvey (MER) def. Micciche (ASM) 6-4, 7-6 (3)
4. Barnes (MER) def. Blaisdell (ASM) 1-6, 7-5, 7-5
5. Fitzgerald (MER) def. Gilet (ASM) 6-3, 6-0
6. Charles (ASM) def. Waddington (MER) 3-6, 6-2, 7-5