OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. – A year ago, the inaugural edition of
the Olivet Nazarene University women’s swim team surprised the field at the
NAIA National Championships and came away with fourth place. The 2014 edition
of the Tiger swim team came to this year’s meet ready to show that they are for
real and aren’t going anywhere anytime soon. Claiming one individual national
title and 16 All-American performances, the Tigers finished in third place with
Defending national champion, Oklahoma Baptist University
easily captured this year’s title, finishing with 849 points. Savannah College
of Art and Design (SCAD) finished second with 492 points. Rounding out the top
five were Brenau University (Ga.) with 344 points and Concordia University –
Irvine with 341.
Sophomore Sydney Harris (Fort Wayne, Ind.) captured gold in
the 200-yard breaststroke, touching in at 2:19.55, 3.10 ahead of the next
Freshman Hayley Ronci (Goshen, Ind.) and junior Laura Bryant
placed sixth and seventh, respectively in the 1650-freestyle. Ronci finished at
17:47.75 and Bryant at 17:48.64. The same two battled it out in the 200-yard
butterfly, finishing 8-9, and this time with Bryant ahead. Bryant finished at
2:11.96, while Ronci touched the pad at 2:11.39.
Anderson (Clifton, Ill.) and freshman Tiffany Ray (Grandview, Mich.) finished
5-6 in the 200-yard backstroke. Anderson at 2:04.36 and Ray at 2:05.00.
Olivet finished the night and the meet taking fourth in the
400-yard freestyle relay. The team of senior Sam Elam (Granada Hill, Cal.), sophomore
Kelsey Weener (Holland, Mich.), Anderson and Ray finished at 3:33.33.
Olivet head coach, Scott Teeters, was named Women’s NAIA co-Coach
of the Year.
In all, the Tigers return home with an individual national champion,
Sydney Harris in the 200-yard breaststroke, and 16 All-Americans: Anderson
(2-time), Ray, Elam (3-time) Holly Risinger, Weener (2-time), Harris (4-time), Kara
DeLong, Rachel Jirik and Whitney Whitehead.