Hammond clinched the huge match point for the Skyhawks with her comeback three-set win at No. 3 singles.
Skyhawks take two game lead atop NE10 standings with 21st-straight Conference win
EASTON, Mass. (October 10, 2018) – Stonehill College, ranked No. 42 in the most recent Oracle/Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) Division II rankings, battled past Merrimack College for a 6-1 triumph in a battle for first place in the Conference standings in Northeast-10 women's tennis action at Charles Watt Tennis Courts.
Senior Nicole Downey, junior Alexandra Vo and sophomores Isabelle Porter and Bethany Hammond were all double-winners to lead Stonehill to its 21st-straight NE10 regular season win to take a two-game lead atop the standings with three matches to play.
Vo and freshman Samantha Ormesher clinched a hard-fought doubles point for Stonehill with their 7-6 (7-4) decision at No. 2. The duo were down 2-3 before breaking Merrimack's serve in the sixth, only to be broken back again in the 13th game. Vo and Ormesher broke serve once again to force the tiebreaker on its way to the critical victory after Hammond and Porter had breezed to a 6-1 win at No. 1 doubles.
Hammond provided the match-deciding fourth point for Stonehill with a comeback three-set win against Merrimack senior Lauren Persson at No. 3 singles. Hammond was edged in an opening set tiebreaker 6-7 (7-4) after trailing 0-3, before rallying in the second and third 6-1, 6-2 to claim the win.
Vo and Porter also claimed comfortable singles wins for Stonehill. Vo dispatched sophomore Cassie Restrepo 6-0, 6-1 at No. 2 singles to improve to 29-0 in her career in NE10 singles matches, while Porter defeated senior Mana Seifaei at No. 1 singles, 7-5, 6-1.
Nicole Downey, with parents, John and Christine, celebrated Senior Day with a pair of wins.
Downey and junior Caroline Ray rallied from a 4-1 deficit, gaining a break in the 12th game to force a tiebreaker at No. 3 doubles for Stonehill, which they won 7-4 to finish a sweep of the three doubles matches. Downey followed that up with a three-set win at No. 6 singles to cap her Senior Day, while freshman Emma Markaryan also picked up a three-set win at No. 5.
Merrimack's lone point was won at No. 4 singles by freshman Rosemary Campanella when Ormesher retired in the second set leading 1-0 after Campanella took the opening set 6-1.
Stonehill (8-1, 8-0 NE10) is back in action on Saturday, when it visits Assumption College for an NE10 match at noon. Merrimack (8-5, 7-2 NE10) hosts the University of New Haven on Saturday at 1 p.m.
For the latest on Stonehill Athletics, follow the Skyhawks via social media on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. Fans can also download the Stonehill Skyhawks "Front Row" mobile app, powered by PrestoSports, on iTunes and the Android Market.