Moorestown Friends senior Renna Mohsen-Breen was unquestionably the most accomplished girls tennis player in South Jersey over the past two seasons.
A two-time South Jersey Tennis Coaches Association Player of the Year, Mohsen-Breen went undefeated against South Jersey opponents in 2018 and 2019, won the Burlington County Open all four years of her career and was the only tennis player, male or female, to ever go unbeaten in Friends School League play four straight years. She is also South Jersey Sports Weekly’s Girls Tennis Player of the Year for the second consecutive season.
But when it came time to take a photo for this article honoring her as South Jersey’s best tennis player, Mohsen-Breen didn’t only want to hold her individual trophies. She asked head coach Mike Bodary to fetch the team’s 2019 Non-Public B state championship trophy out of the athletic department office.
That gesture is an example of the type of player Mohsen-Breen was in her four years at Moorestown Friends: an incredibly talented individual who always thought about her team first.
“We all are equal when we go out on the court and we’re all playing our own position and doing really well at our own position,” Mohsen-Breen said about playing for Moorestown Friends. “Everyone has success. I don’t feel like I’m special when I’m going out with my team. I’m just one of seven girls and we’re all battling and trying to win.”
Despite her humble attitude, there was no doubt Mohsen-Breen was a special player. She won a school-record 115 matches during her career and lost just eight times. Four of her eight career losses came during her freshman year. In 2019, her only two losses came in the semifinals of the NJSIAA singles tournament and in the Tournament of Champions final.
BACK TO BACK – Girls' Tennis sweeps Newark Academy, 5-0, to win their second consecutive NJSIAA state championship!!! Match winners: Renna Mohsen-Breen, Bella Pescatore, Lisa Seiler, Elena Styliades/Skye Mada, and Roma Jha/Natalie Julian. Congratulations Foxes! #gofoxes
— Moorestown Friends (@mfsfox) October 18, 2019
Bodary first saw Mohsen-Breen play at the age of 9 in a 14-and-under tournament at Green Valley Tennis Club and believes that vast tournament experience allowed Mohsen-Breen to put together a historical career.
“Her confidence just grew exponentially I think because she played so many challenging tournaments,” Bodary said. “There were two girls in the Friends League that just hit the ball really hard. Renna just had no trouble against them. She’s used to playing against girls that would just pound the ball … Without that tournament experience, I don’t think it would translate as easily for her.”
While some tennis players of Mohsen-Breen’s caliber opt to not play in high school, playing for Moorestown Friends was something she wanted to experience. Mohsen-Breen wanted to know what it was like to be a part of a team and would end up leading the Foxes to their first two state championships in program history in 2018 and 2019.
“Renna was an automatic (point) in all matches pretty much,” Bodary said. “She was done early and then would go over to the other courts, cheering everyone on. The other players, knowing you have one point, certainly helps.”
Mohsen-Breen’s focus on the team even came out when she accepted an individual honor, the South Jersey Player of the Year Award, at the SJTCA banquet last Sunday.
“I said in my speech that I’m so happy that we can receive this award,” Mohsen-Breen said. “We, because it wouldn’t be possible without everyone here.
“When I was writing my speech for the South Jersey banquet, just thinking back on every year and all of the success we had, it’s pretty crazy just to think about the legacy we can be a part of now at Moorestown Friends,” Mohsen-Breen added.
Mohsen-Breen is hoping to contribute to another outstanding legacy in college as she plans to attend Wesleyan University in Connecticut. Wesleyan won its first-ever NCAA Division III national championship in 2019 and Mohsen-Breen believes her experience at Moorestown Friends has prepared her to compete for the Cardinals next year.
“I think it was really valuable to learn what it’s like to be part of a team,” Mohsen-Breen said. “My goal was to go to college to play tennis and I think this simulated what that will be like on a smaller scale.”
There were a couple of goals Mohsen-Breen didn’t accomplish in 2019. Her top goal of winning a Tournament of Champions title didn’t happen when the Foxes lost to East Brunswick in the final. She also came up short in the state singles tournament when she lost to eventual champion Stephanie Yakoff of Fort Lee in the semifinals. Despite those defeats, Mohsen-Breen has no regrets and is proud of the accomplishments she – and her team – achieved.
“It was kind of emotional at the banquet,” Mohsen-Breen said. “I feel like I put a lot into this team and I feel like we’ve reaped the benefits of that. But … seeing (my accomplishments) on paper, it feels really weird. I’ve had those accomplishments, but I feel like I couldn’t do it without the team that we had … and the support from coach.”