2014 NAIA National Championships – Women’s Meet
- Dates: Wednesday, March 5 – Saturday, March 8, 2014; prelims 10:00 am, finals 6:00 pm
- Location: Oklahoma City Community College, Oklahoma City, OK (Central Time Zone)
- Defending Champions: Oklahoma Baptist University (results)
- Results: Available
- Live Video: Available
- Championship Central
The 2013 NAIA National Championship was Oklahoma Baptist’s first national title, having been runner-up to Fresno Pacific the previous year. The Lady Bisons won seven individual and five relay events, and set meet records in the 200 and 400 free relays. None of their event winners graduated so they are expected to be as strong this year as they were last.
SCAD Savannah sat alone in second place in 2013 on the strength of 4 individual titles, many A finalists, and strong relays. University of the Cumberlands, Olivet Nazarene and Concordia rounded out the top five; their scores were very close.
Who’s Who in 2014
This year there is a lot of new talent with the potential to score big points and shift the landscape. Here are some of the key players this year.
Diving: There are only five schools with divers in the meet, so they all jump out to early leads from Day One: OBU, Cumberlands, Concordia, ONU and Biola.
500 free: Most of the 2013 A final is returning, including champion Nicole Wilson of OBU, Caroline Lepesant and Emma McKinley of SCAD, Sam Elam of ONU, and Grace Van Ryckeghem of Cumberlands. Freshman Courtney Hayward of Brenau joins the group this year with the second fastest seed time.
200 IM: Cumberlands’ Charlotte Parent is back defending her title this year, and is joined by Biola’s Christine Tixier, Hannah Legg of SCAD, and Kerryn Mullin of OBU. Ines Remersaro (OBU), Norra Stroh (SCAD), Lizzy Horn (Cumberlands), and Sydney Harris (ONU) all contested the A final last year and are back again.
50 free: OBU had half the lanes in the A final in 2013 and all of them are entered in the event this year. Laura Galarza, Emma Forbes-Milne, and Lisa MacManus finished 1-2-3 for the Bisons. Some of the other top sprinters in the meet include Union’s Callie Harrigan and Anna Kotliarova, SCAD’s Julie Woody and Becky Dionne, and Concordia’s Brooke Roy.
400 IM: Brenau’s Hayward is top seed in the 400 IM. Last year’s runner-up, Wilson of OBU, is entered in the race, as is SCAD’s McKinley who was fifth. Newcomer Tiffany Ray (ONU) and Abby Blake (Biola) also come in this year with top-eight seeded times.
100 fly: Tixier of Biola is back to defend her title; she’ll be up against Parent (Cumberlands) and McManus (OBU) from last year’s championship final, plus Laura Stephenson of Lindsey Wilson, Michelle Billeaud of Brenau, Mikala Nelson of Concordia, and Heather Partlow of SCAD.
200 free: Lepesant of SCAD comes in with the top qualifying time; she’ll be joined by last year’s top three finishers, all from OBU: Galarza, Wilson, and Yulia Lapshova, in addition to Union’s Harrigan, Concordia’s Roy, and Shelby Rumker of Brenau.
100 breast: Defending champion Mullin from OBU is back, and will be challenged by ONU’s Harris and Brenau’s Mary Katherine Jabbia, who come in with the top two qualifying times. Others who will be contending the title include Melissa Peplinski (Cumberlands), Kasey McCormick (Union), Catherine Lugo (ONU), and SCAD’s Partlow.
100 back: Brenau freshman Talia Sola comes in with the fastest seed time; last year’s champion MacManus of OBU is also entered, as are fellow A finalists Remersaro (OBU), Billeaud (Brenau), and Horn (Cumberlands). Other top seeds include Lucy Gregory (Cumberlands), MacKenzie Anderson (ONU), Dionne (SCAD) and Hannah Legg of SCAD, who won the 200 back last year.
1650 free: Hayward of Brenau is top seed in the mile; she will be challenged by 2013 champion Lepesant of SCAD, her teammate Alice Oggionni, Van Ryckeghem (Cumberlands), Elam (ONU), and Samantha Leanza of Concordia, all of whom were A finalsts last year.
200 back: Like the 100, the fastest seed time belongs to Sola of Brenau. 2013 championship finalists Remersaro of OBU and Parent of Cumberlands will hope to improve upon last year’s finish while newcomers Gregory (Cumberlands) and Dionne (SCAD) are also within range of the title.
100 free: OBU’s Galarza will try to defend her title against challengers Harrigan (Union), Roy (Concordia), Rumker (Brenau), Lexie Keller and Andrea Antonissen (OBU), Anna Kotliarova (Union), and Claire Partlow (SCAD).
200 breast: Defending champion Mullin of OBU will be joined by Brenau’s Jabbia, ONU’s Harris, and McCormick and Jule Stein of Union.
200 fly: One of the most exciting events of last year’s meet was the 200 fly final and the photo finish in which SCAD’s Legg just touched out Biola’s Tixier for the win. The two are back again this year, along with Concordia’s Nelson, LWC’s Stephenson, and SCAD’s McKinley. This should be another great match-up.
Quite a few meet records could be on the chopping blocks this year, as they were missed by a couple of tenths last time.
Oklahoma Baptist has an enormous amount of depth, plus all those extra diving points, so we don’t think it’s likely that anyone will dethrone the Bisons this year. But the race for 2-5 or 6 should be quite close. Here are our picks for the top ten:
- Oklahoma Baptist
- SCAD Savannah
- University of the Cumberlands
- Concordia University
- Brenau University
- Olivet Nazarene University
- Union College
- Biola University
- Lindsey Wilson College
- Morningside College
The National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA), headquartered in Kansas City, Mo., is a governing body of small athletics programs that are dedicated to character-driven intercollegiate athletics.
In 2000, the NAIA reaffirmed its purpose to enhance the character building aspects of sport. Through Champions of Character, the NAIA seeks to create an environment in which every student-athlete, coach, official and spectator is committed to the true spirit of competition through five core values.