Sophomore Victoria Barbetta helped lead the Skyhawks to their first round win on Wednesday is unbeaten in NE-10 play this fall.
Third-seeded Skyhawks and second-seeded Penmen clash in semifinal round for second straight year
EASTON, Mass. (October 22, 2015) – Third-seeded Stonehill College, ranked sixth in the most recent Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) Division II East Regional rankings, continues its defense of its Northeast-10 Conference Tournament Championship as it visits second-seeded Southern New Hampshire University, ranked seventh in the region, for semifinal round play of the NE-10 Tournament at SNHU Tennis Courts on Friday at 2 p.m.
Admission for the NE-10 tournament matchup is free of charge and in the event of inclement weather, the match will be played at Allard Center YMCA in Goffstown, New Hampshire, at noon. Live results will be available via stonehillskyhawks.com.
Stonehill (12-3, 10-2 NE-10), which is making its record 17th NE-10 Tournament appearance, advanced to the semifinal round for the 14th straight year with a 5-1 victory over sixth-seeded Le Moyne College in Wednesday's first round. Sophomore Victoria Barbetta (Wesley Chapel, Florida/Saddlebrook Prep) and freshman Nicole Downey (Groveland, Massachusetts/Pentucket Regional) led the Skyhawks with wins in singles and doubles play. Sophomore Emma Prinos (Foxboro, Massachusetts/Foxboro) clinched the win for the Skyhawks with her 6-1, 6-0 win at No. 6 singles, while Downey and senior Kirsti Toegemann (Narragansett, Rhode Island/The Lincoln School) clinched a key 2-1 edge for Stonehill following doubles play when they reeled off the final three games to capture a 9-7 victory at No. 3.
Stonehill seeks its tenth trip to the NE-10 Championship match on Friday, having captured its fifth postseason conference championship with a 5-3 victory over fourth-seeded Merrimack College last fall. The Skyhawks have appeared in the final nine times under the current tournament bracket format, also winning the title in 2009 and 2013, while winning two championships under the old flighted points system in 1991 and '92 before the league switched to its present format in 1999. Stonehill edged Southern New Hampshire 5-4 in last year's NE-10 semifinal round in Goffstown.
Senior Analise Kump was the Tournament MVP a year ago and looks to lead the Skyhawks to a third title over the last four years.
Stonehill features an experienced lineup that returns four members of last year's NE-10 Championship lineup, five with postseason experience overall, with its four seniors seeking to capture the third NE-10 title of their careers. The Skyhawks are winners of nine of ten heading into Friday's semifinal. Senior co-captain Analise Kump (Falmouth, Maine/Falmouth), the NE-10 Championship MVP last fall and Barbetta lead Stonehill into the postseason having posted a combined 48-12 record this season, both earning All-Northeast-10 Conference honors this fall.
Kump is a combined 20-6 in singles and doubles play this fall, posting a 9-2 singles record, including 9-1 in NE-10 play, with a 5-2 mark at No. 2 and 4-0 at No. 3. She is 11-4 in doubles play, including 7-2 in the NE-10, teaming up with Barbetta for a 10-4 record, including 7-2 in the NE-10. Barbetta has posted a combined singles and doubles record of 28-6, posting a 16-2 singles record, including a perfect 12-0 record against NE-10 competition, with a 7-0 record at No. 3 and 6-0 at No. 4 to go with a win at No. 3. The doubles team earned second team All-Northeast-10 honors this fall
Downey, named to the All-Northeast-10 third team and an All-Rookie Team pick, has made an immediate contribution in her first collegiate season, posting a combined record of 28-3. She has a 16-1 singles record, including 8-1 against NE-10 opposition, going 4-0 at No. 5 and 3-1 at No. 6. Downey has posted a 12-2 doubles record, including 9-1 in the NE-10, combining with Toegemann for a 6-2 record, including 4-1 in the NE-10.
Toegemann is a combined 14-8 in singles and doubles play this fall, posting a 4-3 singles record, while Prinos, a first team All-Northeast-10 performer this fall, has added a 9-4 singles record, including 9-1 versus the NE-10. Senior Bailey Paradiso (Birmingham, Michigan/Marian) rounds out the Skyhawks lineup at No. 1 singles, while teaming up with Prinos at No. 1 doubles.
Southern New Hampshire (11-1, 11-1 NE-10), which earned a first round bye as the No. 2 seed for the tournament, enters Friday's match winners of ten straight. The Penmen are in the semifinal round of the NE-10 Tournament for the seventh time in 12 NE-10 Tournament appearances, having reached the championship match four times with three titles. SNHU won three straight NE-10 Tournament crowns in 2010, 2011 and 2012, topping Stonehill each year.
Freshman Nicole Downey has had a strong rookie season for the Skyhawks.
SNHU boasts three All-Northeast-10 singles performers and two All-Conference doubles tandems. Senior Ashley Loft (Leysin, Switzerland) earned first team All-NE-10 honors at both No. 2 singles as well as No. 1 doubles along with postgrad Nour Kaddour (Paris, France). Loft is a combined 30-2 in singles and doubles play this fall, having posted a 14-1 singles mark, winning all 12 NE-10 matches, and going 8-0 at No. 2. She and Kaddour have combined for a 13-1 record, including 9-0 in Conference play, with a 9-0 clip at No. 1.
Sophomore Lindsay Baum (North Salem, New York/North Salem) and freshman Rachel Wagner (Framingham, Massachusetts/Framingham) both collected All-Northeast-10 second team honors for singles and doubles play. Baum owns a combined 22-5 singles and doubles mark this fall, posting a 12-2 singles record, including 11-1 in the NE-10, with an 8-1 record at No. 5. Wagner is a combined 21-6, posting an 11-3 record in singles, including 10-2 in the NE-10 with a 7-2 record at No. 6. Baum and Wagner have teamed up to post an 8-2 record in doubles play, including 7-1 in the NE-10, going 6-1 at No. 3.
Southern New Hampshire earned a 5-4 victory over Stonehill in the NE-10 opener for both back on September 9. Baum clinched the key early season win by grinding out a 7-6 (8-6), 6-3 victory at No. 5 singles against Prinos. Loft and Kaddour were both double-winners for the Penmen in the win. Loft combined with freshman Kaitlin Poje (East Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania/East Stroudsburg South) for an 8-5 win at No. 2 doubles and then added a 6-2, 6-3 win over Paradiso at No. 1 singles. Kaddour and senior Yolanda Green (Springfield, Massachusetts/Longmeadow) teamed up for an 8-3 win at No. 1 doubles that clinched a vital 2-1 SNHU edge after doubles play. Kaddour followed that up with a 6-0, 6-0 win at No. 2 singles against Toegemann.
Stonehill battled back from 3-1 and 4-2 deficits to level the match at 4-4 after Barbetta's 6-1, 6-4 victory at No. 4 singles against Poje. Kump and junior Lorraine Smith (Littleton, Colorado/D'Evelyn) each chipped in points for the Skyhawks in singles play as well, while Downey and Toegemann won at No. 3 doubles.
The winner of Friday's semifinal match advances to the NE-10 Championship, hosted by the highest remaining seed, at 1 p.m. Top-seeded and defending regular season NE-10 Champions Adelphi University (13-0, 12-0 NE-10) hosts fourth-seeded Merrimack (13-3, 9-3 NE-10) in tomorrow's other semifinal on Long Island at 2 p.m.
2015 Northeast-10 Conference
Women's Tennis Tournament
Wednesday, October 21
#3 Stonehill 5, #6 Le Moyne 1
#4 Merrimack 5, #5 Assumption 1
Friday, October 23
#3 Stonehill (12-3, 10-2 NE-10) at #2 Southern N.H. (11-1, 11-1 NE-10), 2 p.m.
#4 Merrimack (13-3, 9-3 NE-10) at #1 Adelphi (13-0, 12-0 NE-10), 2 p.m.
Sunday, October 25
Semifinal winners at highest remaining seed, 1 p.m.