By Rebecca Fischer
(TEANECK) – On Sunday, April 24, both the women’s tennis team and the women’s golf team brought home Northeast Conference Championship titles, bringing FDU’s tally to a total of four NEC Championships so far this year.
The tennis team’s championship against the Bryant Bulldogs was held in West Windsor, N.J. The Knights, coming from behind in the competition, had to go undefeated to beat the Bulldogs for the win. It all came down to freshman Liza Rachenko in the final matchup, and on an error from her opponent, Rachenko was able to capture the NEC Championship title for the Knights.
“When I was playing the third set, I saw everybody coming to my court to watch,” Rachenko said. “No words were needed — I knew I was the clincher. My team, the men’s team, and my coaches believed in me and that’s what really helped me win.”
This marks the fourth NEC Championship title for the women’s tennis team in just five years. The team is happy to be going back to the NCAA tournament where they will compete on Friday, May 6 against an undetermined opponent.
“It is unbelievable and incredibly awesome,” Rachenko said. “I am so proud of my team. Congratulations, we made it.”
The golf team competed in Daytona, Fla. and picked up their second consecutive NEC Championship title on the same day as the tennis team.
After maintaining a two-day lead at the tournament, the Knights officially claimed their win on Sunday with a one-stroke victory over the Sacred Heart Pioneers. All five of the Knights finished among the top 15 at the tournament, including a second-place finish from junior Rebecca Wright and a fourth place finish from freshman Anneke Strobach.
“To win two years in a row is an amazing feeling and an opportunity that very few people are fortunate enough to experience,” Wright said.
“What makes it even more enjoyable is sharing the success with such a great group of girls. Our team is so diverse and everyone brings their own talent and characteristics to the team, and aside from being exceptional golfers they are also great friends.”
The Knights will head to Baton Rouge, LA next to compete in the 2016 NCAA Division I Women’s Golf Regionals amongst an 18-team field.
With two teams heading into their respective NCAA tournaments, a total of four NEC Championships in the 2015-16 season, and more accolades than can be counted, the Knights have given the FDU community reason to be proud this year.