Oklahoma Baptist Sweeps NAIA Titles

OKLAHOMA CITY, Oklahoma, March 3. THE Oklahoma Baptist men and women's teams were crowned national champions Saturday at the 2013 NAIA Men's & Women's Swimming and Diving National Championships. It was the second title in as many years for the men and the first ever title for the Lady Bison, who finished runner-up in 2012. For both programs, this is only the second year of competition.

The Bison men won with a final team score of 881. Condordia (Calif.) finished runner-up with a team score of 448.5, barely edging out Olivet Nazarene (Ill.), who finished with 428.5.

On the women's side, the Lady Bison finished with a team score of 845, followed by SCAD Savannah (Ga.) with 600. Cumberlands (Ky.) came in third place with a final team score of 367.

Saturday night began with the longest race of the competition, the 1650-yard freestyle. A pair of SCAD swimmers captured the women's top spots, as Caroline Lepesant came in first followed by Heather Librizzi. On the men's side Andrew Fischer from Olivet swam the fastest time.

Another pair of Lady Bees' came in first and second in the women's 200-yard backstroke. Hannah Legg edged out her teammate Kelsey Bobzien to win the title. The Bees' Ryan Searles was the reigning national record holder coming into the event, and he scorched the competition on the men's side, winning by more than two full seconds.

The Bison's Daniel Ramirez established a new national record in the Men's 100-yard freestyle. The only other record that fell Saturday was the women's 400-yard freestyle relay. The Lady Bison established a new top time in the event with a team of Laura Galarza, Emma Forbes-Milne, Lisa MacManus and Nicole Wilson. Concordia took home the championship in the men's 400-yard freestyle relay with a team of Kevin Donnelly, Lucas Spencer, Parker Simmons, and Cody Ditsler.

Galarza of Oklahoma Baptist won the swimmer of the meet, while fellow Lady Bison teammate MacManus was awarded the swim of the meet for her swim in the 100-yard backstroke. Ramirez from Oklahoma Baptist captured both individual awards for the men, with the Bison's performance in the 100-yard backstroke winning the swim of the meet. Ian McNair of Illinois Tech won the award for men's diver of the championships, with the women's award going to Kristen Brimage of Oklahoma Baptist.

The men's coach of the year was awarded to Eric Skelly of the Cumberlands. Chris Conlon of SCAD was honored as the women's coach of the year.

National Event Records Broken During the Championships
Men's 100-Yard Freestyle – Daniel Ramirez, Oklahoma Baptist (43.42)
Women's 400-Yard Freestyle Relay – Oklahoma Baptist (3:25.63)
Women's 200-Yard Freestyle Relay – Oklahoma Baptist (1:32.88)
Men's 200-Yard Freestyle Relay – Oklahoma Baptist (1:19.50)
Men's 100-Yard Butterfly – Nick Schuttinger, Oklahoma Baptist (47.30)
Men's 100-Yard Backstroke – Daniel Ramirez, Oklahoma Baptist (47.61)
Men's 200-Yard Medley Relay – Oklahoma Baptist (1:27.66)
Men's 50-Yard Freestyle – Nick Schuttinger, Oklahoma Baptist (19.83)
Men's 200-Yard Freestyle – Nick Schuttinger, Oklahoma Baptist (1:36.87)

Women's Top Five
Oklahoma Baptist 845
SCAD 600
Cumberlands 367
Olivet Nazarene 342
Concordia-Irvine 310

Men's Top Five
Oklahoma Baptist 881
Concordia-Irvine 448.5
Olivet Nazarene 428.5
SCAD 392
Illinois Tech 291

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