Women’s “Green” Team Wins UVCTA Championship!


(l to r) Linda Arnold, Gina Hutchins, Kate Cricco, Sara Lang, Heather Klein, Megan Malandrinos, and Andrea Murphy indicate that the “Green” team finished at #1 for the 2019 season.

A new championship banner will soon be hung on the fences at Eastman.

The ladies from Eastman’s “Green” team went to Newport Tennis Club last Wednesday on a mission to bring home a 3rd Women’s B League banner in seven years, and they certainly did not disappoint—either themselves, their teammates, or the fans who traveled to Newport to cheer them on. In fact, by the time they left the club, the courts were not the only thing they swept.

Linda Arnold and Sara Lang teamed up for the late-afternoon opener, facing two experienced Newport players. After getting off to a slow start in the first set, Linda and Sara came back strong to take the second 6-4, and used lobs and drop shots to win the 10-point tiebreaker, giving up only four points to their opponents. 

Following that hard-earned, confidence-building “W” for the team, Kate Cricco and Heather Klein faced a formidable team in Newport’s captain and her long-time partner. Characteristically consistent from the baseline, Kate sent shots deep to the opponents’ baseline while Heather mixed up the pace with sharp cross-court backhands. The “Green’s” duo needed a mere 13 games to clinch the win—and championship. The “Special K’s” (Kate and Klein) in their first year playing together, finished the 2019 season undefeated as a team.

Photo: Newport Captain Nancy Jachim and the “Green’s” Captain Heather Klein shake hands after Eastman’s team won, as Nancy’s partner, Sharon Goolbis (left) and Kate Cricco, Heather’s partner, (right) chat.

Two of the newest players on the team, Megan Malandrinos and Andrea Murphy were fierce and fired up at line 3. Not to be outdone by their teammates on the other court, the M&M team used their young legs, skills, and strategy to serve up their own 6-1, 6-0 win.

Photo: Megan Malandrinos ready to volley balls at the net while partner Andrea Murphy (not in photo) sets up the point at the baseline.

The M&M team round out what is a very deep roster for the Green Machine. Ten players finished the season winning more than 50% of their matches. In addition to the six women who played in the championship match, members of the Arnold/Klein/Lang-led team include: Caroline Carey, Christine Cecchetti, Judi Dixon, Connie Horton, Gina Hutchins, Brenda Rappeport, Pam Skillman, and Tami Palomba.

Tennis Trivia: What significance do the teams’ names “Blue” and “Green” have in Eastman?

According to the captains, the passion to play, the will to win, the enthusiasm and positive attitude exhibited by every member of the team all season long contributed to the team’s success. Heather also cited the camaraderie and support between the two women’s teams, the “Blue” and the “Green,” that practiced together all season long under enthusiastic coaching from Eastman’s tennis pro Josh Holt, as a factor in their road to success.

Congratulations to all for a great season! According to Heather, the ladies can’t wait to see the new banner hung on the fences on Draper Road. And neither can their loyal Eastman fans!

Fans on the edges of their seats

Answer to trivia question: Blue and green are the colors on the Eastman logo, an official registered trademark.