July 9, 2011

Bryce Announces Maria Benkirane as Squad's Latest Addition

SAINT LEO, Fla. – Tennis Coach James Bryce has announced Maria Benkirane, sister of former Lions' standout Lina Benkirane,  has signed a National Letter of Intent to play for the women's tennis team in 2011-12.

Benkirane is Bryce's final addition to the women's side for 2011.

Maria Benkirane
Freshman 
Casablanca, Morocco
George Washington Academy

Benkirane is a Casablanca, Morocco native and attended George Washington Academy in her hometown of Casablanca. While at the academy, the soon-to-be-Lion was a multi-sport star as she was named team captain and MVP of both her volleyball and soccer squads.

On the tennis side, Benkirane excelled. She competed for the RUC club team under the tutelage of Rachid Lamina and her efforts on the court helped place her third in the group's top division.

Benikrane joins Emily Singleton as they only two women signees for the upcoming season.

Bryce's Perspective: "Maria will come in as a true freshman and immediately have an impact on this team. She is a native of Morroco and the sister of recent graduate, Lina Benkirane who had a great career at Saint Leo. I hope that Maria can make the kind of impact that her sister did and take this team to a conference contender and national recognition. Our goal is to earn an NCAA tournament appearance this season and with the incoming class, in addition to our returnees, I am confident we can reach our goal."