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Holy Cross Tennis Has Strong Local Ties

Thursday, March 15, 2012

 

Senior Emily Marr

The roster of Holy Cross’ women’s tennis team features only two players from Massachusetts, but there is still an undeniable Worcester presence.

Seniors Carolyn Chandley and Emily Marr are both Worcester natives, and have lived their entire tennis lives in the city. Chandley played her high school tennis at St. Peter-Marian, while Marr played for Notre Dame Academy. During her time at Notre Dame, Marr played under current Holy Cross coach Lisa Meola.

“I’ve actually coached Emily for eight straight years,” Meola said with a smile. “I left Notre Dame when she graduated and became the coach here. I think by now I know her game pretty well.”

But it isn’t just Meola that has become familiar with Marr. Back in high school, Chandley had what she calls a “friendly rivalry” with Marr, and says that has continued to this day.

“We were rivals, and she always beat me, I’ll say that” Chandley said laughing. “I can beat her now, but it doesn’t count anymore. We still have friendly competition, but it’s just to push both of us.”

Far from actual rivals, the two are now doubles partners with games that perfectly complement one another. Marr is the steady base-line player with consistent groundstrokes, while Chandley is the aggressive, attacking player at the net. The Worcester tandem has posted an impressive 9-3 record so far this year, and staying close to home for college was a no-brainer for both.

“I pretty much knew I was going to Holy Cross,” Marr said. “I took some visits to other schools like Providence and Assumption, but I was familiar with the coaching staff here and just really liked the school.”

Senior Carolyn Chandley

As for singles play, the two have combined to post a 15-3 record, with each consistently playing in the top-four of Holy Cross’ six-player rotation. While Worcester may not be known as a tennis hub, Meola thinks her two players were the product of a high point in the history of the Worcester tennis community.

“I think the tennis community here in Worcester was really strong back when they were coming out of high school,” Meola said. “Along with Emily and Carolyn you had a bunch of other Division I type of players, and that makes everyone better.”

Marr is actually now an assistant coach at Notre Dame, and admits that tennis is not getting the attention it used to in the area. However, she still believes the Worcester area is a competitive place to play tennis. The Patriot League is also very competitive, but Holy Cross’ impressive fall season has expectation raised from last season’s 2-14 finish.

“We went 7-1 in the fall, which was a highlight of the time I’ve been here,” Marr said. “Now we’re all just working to improve every day and make the team better.”

The Crusaders started out their 2012 spring season well with an 8-1 victory over Smith on March 11th. It was a great start to each of their senior seasons, but both are already looking toward the future. Marr is currently deciding between law school and working for a non-profit, while Chandley is moving to New York to work for Bloomberg. Both are sure to be busy.
 

 

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