Merrimack Edges Stonehill, 5-4

Sophomore Analise Kump recorded wins at No. 3 doubles and No. 4 singles on Saturday.

Messina sisters keep Warriors unbeaten in NE-10 play 

NORTH ANDOVER, Mass. (April 12, 2014) – Merrimack College, ranked seventh in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) Division II East Regional rankings and sixth in the NCAA East Regional rankings, maintained its unbeaten mark in conference play with a 5-4 triumph over Stonehill College, ranked eighth in the NCAA regional rankings and ninth by the ITA, in Northeast-10 Conference women's tennis action at North Andover High School this afternoon.

Junior Shakee Messina (Caracas, Venezuela) led three double-winners for Merrimack, clinching the win with her 6-4, 3-6, 7-5 victory over Stonehill junior Meryl Lawrence (North Scituate, R.I./Mount Saint Charles Academy) at No. 3 singles. She and her younger sister Grace Messina (Caracas, Venezuela), the fifth-ranked doubles team in the East Region by the ITA, helped seal a 2-1 Warriors advantage after doubles play with their 8-3 win at the top flight. Grace Messina, ranked 18th in the region, also picked up a win leading 6-2, 2-1 when sophomore Kirsti Toegemann (Narragansett, R.I./The Lincoln), ranked 20th, retired.

Junior Chealsey Giatrelis (Centerville, Mass./Barnstable) also earned a pair of points for Merrimack. She and senior Kara Hole (Portsmouth, R.I./The Lincoln School), ranked eighth in the ITA East doubles rankings, posted an 8-3 win over Toegemann and Lawrence at No. 2 doubles. Giatrelis then added a 6-0, 6-2 win at No. 2 singles against sophomore Bailey Paradiso (Birmingham, Mich./Marian).

Sophomore Analise Kump (Falmouth, Maine/Falmouth) and freshman Lorraine Smith (Littleton, Colo./D'Evelyn) were both double-winners to lead Stonehill, starting by combining for an 8-4 decision at No. 3 doubles. Kump added a 7-5, 6-2 victory at No. 4 singles against Hole, while Smith recorded a 6-1, 6-1 triumph at No. 6 singles against senior Alyx Barnes (Portsmouth, N.H./Portsmouth). Senior Kaitlyn Martin (Mattapoisett, Mass./Medway) earned a point for the Skyhawks with her back and forth 7-5, 4-6, 10-4 decision over junior Rachel Muller (North Andover, Mass./North Andover) at No. 5 singles.

Stonehill (16-6, 10-2 NE-10) is off until it opens defense of its NE-10 Tournament title when the 2014 event opens with first round action on Wednesday, April 23. The Skyhawks are still alive for a first round bye, but need Adelphi University to lose two of its last three matches next week. Should that happen, Stonehill will host an NE-10 semifinal on Friday, April 25. The NE-10 Championship is scheduled for Sunday, April 27. Merrimack (12-4, 11-0 NE-10) closes out the regular season on Thursday when it looks to clinch the NE-10 regular season championship outright and seal the top seed for the NE-10 Tournament when it visits Southern New Hampshire University at 3 p.m.

For the latest on Stonehill Athletics, follow the Skyhawks via social media on Twitter and Facebook. Fans can also download the Stonehill Skyhawks mobile app on iTunes and the Android Market.

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