By GREG KEIM
THE GOSHEN NEWS
The Anderson University softball team advanced to the NCAA DIII World Series for the first time in school history before the Ravens (31-17) lost to No. 1 ranked Salisbury in Eau Claire, Wisconsin.
Sophomore outfielder Samantha Steele (Northridge) played in 44 games (28 starts) this season for the Ravens.
She batted .338 (27-for-80) with 24 runs, three RBI and 12 steals.
Steele had two hits in a 5-1 win over Allegheny in the regional championship that sent the Ravens to the World Series in a game played in Angola.
The NCAA honored more than 950 Division I sports teams – including the Bowling Green State University women’s tennis program – for their high marks academically. The Falcons under the guidance of head coach Penny Dean earn this honor for the eighth consecutive season.
The team has captured the award in every year since its inception. In fact the Falcons have had a perfect score of 1,000 each year.
Bowling Green is one of only 62 schools at the Division I level, including one of only two Mid-American Conference institutions, to have received public recognition awards in each of the eight years of the program. BGSU’s women’s golf team also received the award this season.
Each year, the NCAA tracks the classroom performance of student-athletes on every Division I team through the annual scorecard of academic achievement, known as APR.
The score measures eligibility and retention each semester or quarter and provides a clear picture of the academic culture in each sport. The most recent APRs are multi-year rates based on scores from the 2008-09, 2009-10, 2010-11 and 2011-12 academic years.
Senior Katie Grubb (Elkhart Memorial) was a member of the honored team. She finished her career with 132 victories (14th most in school history).
She had a total singles mark of 59-41 and a doubles record of 79-39, The 70 doubles wins is sixth on the all-time BGSU list.
She had a combined 6-1 mark in Mid-American Conference Championships matches, including a 4-0 doubles mark.
Bethel College senior Jill Focht (NorthWood) earned NCCAA Scholar Athlete honors and junior Morgan McFarren (Westview) NAIA and NCCAA Scholar Athlete honors this season. Focht studied communications and McFarren elementary education.
Women’s Track and Field
Anderson University sophomore Desiree Maran (Goshen) posted the 10th best time in the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference this season in the 5,000 meters (20:40.66) at the Anderson Indoor Invitational and the 18th best time in the 3,000 (12:06.08) at the Defiance Alumni Invitational.
The Taylor University women’s track and field program received the NAIA Women’s Track and Field Champions of Character Award. The award is designed to recognize one team from around the nation per year in each sport, based upon exemplary character and sportsmanship displayed regularly during practice and competition, as well as on campus and in the community.
Freshman Anissa Richards (West Noble) is a distance runner on the team.
“We are honored to be chosen for this award from the NAIA,” Taylor head coach Ted Bowers said on the school’s Web site “I believe it is a great reflection of the student-athletes on our team and on Taylor as an institution.”
“It was an honor to nominate our women’s track and field program for this award,” said Scott Stan, who serves as Taylor’s director of student-athlete academic services and head women’s soccer coach. “I wanted to showcase the great work that Ted has done throughout his entire coaching career of creating teams with deep Christian character and athletic success.
He has consistently been able to achieve both of those distinctions.”
Grace College junior thrower Kaitlyn Mikel (NorthWood) has been named a College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) Academic All-District and a Daktronics-NAIA Scholar-Athlete.
Her CoSIDA Academic All-District honor was based on both academic and athletic prowess displayed during the 2013 season.
Indiana Wesleyan senior Emily Dean (Jimtown) placed 17th in the marathon at the NAIA National Championships. She completed the 26.2 mile course through the streets of Marion in three hours, 14 minutes and seven seconds.
Men’s Track and Field
Indiana Wesleyan junior Andrew Albert (Northridge) just missed out on being an NAIA All-American when he was edged by .48 to finish ninth in the 3,000-meter steeplechase at the NAIA National Championships at Indiana Wesleyan.
His time of 9:19.60 was a personal best by six seconds.
Anderson University sophomore Krista Zurcher (Wawasee) fired a 37-40—77 to capture medalist honors in the Franklin Invitational at The Legends of Indiana Golf course near Franklin. The par 72 layout played 5,854 yards. She earned Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference Player of the Wood honors with the victory.
The Anderson Ravens finished seventh in the team standings in the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference tournament at Rea Park Golf Course in Terre Haute. Junior Nate Newcomer (Concord) carded an 84 in the third round and an 89 in the fourth.