Women's preview: Mid-American Conference

Women's preview: Mid-American Conference

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Women's preview: Mid-American Conference

Last spring, Kent State graduated a player who head coach Mike Morrow calls one of the best in the history of the program. Martina Gavier’s absence took some getting used to this fall.

The real test, however, will come as the Golden Flashes run a spring gauntlet that rivals the schedule of any top women’s team. The five-tournament stretch, which begins with the Lady Puerto Rico Classic and ends at the Liz Murphy Collegiate, isn’t for the feint of heart. Good thing Kent State has a trio of veterans to take the lead.

“We’re really fortunate to have three good seniors,” Morrow said. “They’re outstanding individuals and very good players and super leaders. They’re also very much tournament tested.”

With that statement, Morrow is referring to Mercedes Germino, Shamira Marshall and daughter Mandi Morrow. Kent State has played its way into NCAA Regionals each of the past three years with these three players on the roster, earning an NCAA Championship berth in 2010.

Add freshman Jennifer Ha, who Morrow calls a “rising star” after Ha played No. 1 for the Golden Flashes most of the fall, and Kent State has plenty of depth to find success in the spring.

“That makes you seasoned veterans by the end of the year,” Morrow said of the difficult schedule. “Especially playing good competition on great golf courses.”

Kent State won’t see many Mid-American Conference foes until the conference championship, but Morrow has kept a careful eye on them this year. He reels off a note about each as he runs down the list of conference teams. The bottom line is that the competition in the MAC is not to be underestimated.

The Golden Flashes aren’t, either. Their schedule alone speaks to their level of talent.

It’s as Morrow says, “You can play your way into tournaments and you can play your way out of tournaments.”

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Top of the class: Kent State

Best player in the fall: Mercedes Germino, Kent State

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Past champions

2007: Kent State

2008: Kent State

2009: Kent State

2010: Kent State

2011: Kent State

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Conference capsules

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Complete coverage

Wondering how your favorite conference is shaping up headed into the spring season? Who is our favorite to pick up the automatic qualifier? Check out our conference-by-conference break down with our complete coverage page here.

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