MANCHESTER, N.H. – Facing a 3-0 deficit after the doubles portion of Saturday’s Northeast-10 Conference Final at Southern New Hampshire, the second-seeded Merrimack College men’s tennis program proceeded to win two singles flights in sweeps and won one set in three other matches to extend the title fight. The top-seeded Penmen prevailed, however, winning first singles in three sets to claim the 2018 NE10 Championship.
Score: Southern New Hampshire 5, Merrimack 2
Records: Merrimack (14-9) | Southern New Hampshire (15-6)
Location: Penmen Stadium Tennis Courts | Manchester, N.H.
2018 NE10 Men’s Tennis Championship Schedule
Tuesday, April 17th
Match 1: #3 Le Moyne 5, #6 Stonehill 0
Match 2: #5 Bentley 5, #4 Franklin Pierce 1
Thursday, April 19th
Match 3: #2 Merrimack 5, Le Moyne 1
Match 4: #1 Southern New Hampshire 5, #5 Bentley 1
Saturday, April 21st
Match 5: #1 Southern New Hampshire 5, #2 Merrimack 2
- Unlike last week’s regular season meeting that saw the Warriors take a 2-1 doubles lead over the Penmen, SNHU won all three doubles flights with the closest match coming at No. 1 (8-5)
- Merrimack’s singles comeback began at No. 2, which saw sophomore Denis Davydov dominate Ricardo Marreiros, who entered the contest with an undefeated singles record against league opponents. Davydov won the opening set, 6-1, before a shutout win to clinch the match
- Classmate Paul Weidinger followed suit at sixth singles, avenging last week’s three-set loss to senior Jeremy Reichentahl, 6-2 and 6-3, to get Merrimack within two points, 4-2
- Senior Mikhail Belov went down 1-0 at the top flight after a 6-2 loss to NE10 Player of the Year Tiago Fernandes. The all-conference second-team selection rallied, building a 5-1 lead in the second set and winning, 6-4, to force a third frame. Fernandes bested Belov in the third, however, clinching the championship with a 6-1 win
- Senior Frank Vega and junior Alex Fedorov each won the first sets at third and fourth singles, respectively, but neither match finished before first singles did
Notes and Notables
- Saturday marked the program’s second straight trip to the NE10 Final, and a rematch of the 2017 title match between the Penmen and Warriors
- Merrimack has reached the NE10 Final six times since 2012, winning the conference championship three times (2012, 2013, 2015)
- Saturday’s match pitted the fourth-ranked Penmen against the fifth-ranked Warriors, per the latest NCAA Division II East Region Poll
Merrimack awaits its fate in the NCAA Tournament, which will be unveiled on Tuesday evening with the NCAA Division II Selection Show. The Warriors entered the week ranked fifth in the East Region, and are on the doorstep of the program’s 11th straight trip to the NCAA East Regional.