Tag Archives: swimming and diving

SAA trophies won by Berry teams in 2017-18

Berry softball seniors

From left, softball seniors Kassie Howard, Brittany Tuttle, Kylie Aiken and Elisabeth Federici show off the eight SAA championship trophies (four regular season, four tournament) won in their four years at Berry.

Eight – that’s the number of conference championships won by Berry teams in 2017-18, a new high for the program in NCAA Division III. The number is even more impressive when you add the 10 individual titles won by student-athletes in women’s golf, swimming and diving, and track and field. It has been a spectacular year by any measure, with national qualifiers in 10 different sports: football, volleyball, cross country, men’s basketball, women’s swimming and diving, women’s track and field (indoor and outdoor), softball, women’s golf, and equestrian.

It would take a year’s worth of Alumni Accents to list all of the highlights produced by Berry student-athletes since our last issue, but we do want to give a virtual “high-five” to the softball team, which won its first NCAA regional championship en route to a sparkling 39-6 finish.

Kudos are also due women’s golf, which earned a top-10 finish in its NCAA national tournament debut, and equestrian, which posted five individual top-10 finishes at western nationals. In addition, Alainna Chretien (18C) capped a stellar track and field career by qualifying for NCAA outdoor nationals – a first for Berry – shattering the school record at 1,500 meters in the process.

Not to be forgotten is the SAA regular-season championship won by Berry’s baseball team, another first in the NCAA era. The Vikings came tantalizingly close to a national tournament bid of their own before closing the season with a 29-13 record.

Visit berryvikings.com for complete coverage of all Berry athletics, including the many individual accolades claimed by Berry student-athletes this spring.

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Men's Basketball Team Celebrates Championship

Above: Members of the Berry men’s basketball team celebrate at midcourt after winning the Southern Athletic Association tournament championship. The Vikings became the first No. 8 seed in SAA history to accomplish the feat.

Genesis Leggett Qualifies for Indoor Nationals

Sophomore Genesis Leggett made history in March as Berry’s first NCAA qualifier in track and field. She competed in the weight throw at indoor nationals.

Basketball, equestrian, swimming and diving, track and field, softball, and golf – regardless of the sport, Berry student-athletes can’t get enough of national competition this semester, and more is yet to come!

In the last week alone, Berry has locked up NCAA Division III national tournament invitations – and conference championships – in softball and women’s golf.  The baseball team can join them by winning this weekend’s SAA championship series in the friendly confines of Bowdoin Field. The men’s 4×100 relay team may also get a crack at nationals after blazing to victory at the SAA track and field championships.

Earlier this semester, senior Haley Brown earned honorable mention All-America recognition as one of four national qualifiers from the women’s swimming and diving team. Sophomore Genesis Leggett, meanwhile, became the first Berry track athlete, male or female, to compete nationally in the NCAA era, qualifying for indoor nationals in the weight throw. Not to be outdone, six members of the equestrian team have punched their tickets to nationals in the Intercollegiate Horse Show Association.

Fittingly, all of this success got started with a bit of madness – February Madness, in this case – courtesy of the men’s basketball team. After finishing eighth in the regular season, the Vikings made history with three wins in three days to claim Berry’s first conference championship in men’s basketball since 1992. Read more about their magical run in this oral history by student Noah Syverson.

Follow the action in all sports at www.berryvikings.com.

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Berry Swimming

Senior Graydon McCrite celebrates with his teammates. Image courtesy of Wade Photography.

Senior Graydon McCrite will make history later this month as the first Berry student-athlete to compete in the NCAA Division III National Swimming and Diving Championships. He punched his ticket to Indianapolis for the March 19-22 event with a winning time of 20.63 seconds in the 50-yard freestyle at the Southern Athletic Association meet in Birmingham. His performance bested the NCAA qualifying standard, set a new conference record and ranked him No. 18 nationally.

The Kennesaw, Ga., native was one of five Berry swimmers to earn first-team All-SAA honors with championship performances at the conference meet. Also topping the podium were sophomore Cameron Grant, junior Conor Monaghan, junior Johnathon Purdy and, on the women’s side, senior Rachel Sandoval. All four clocked times worthy of national consideration but fell just short of an invitation.

McCrite joins senior cross country runner Ryan James and the women’s volleyball team as national qualifiers in Berry’s first year of active membership in NCAA Division III. Berry student-athletes are also shining in the classroom, with 83 making the SAA’s fall sports honor roll.

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Conor Monaghan put his name in the record books as the first conference champion in the three-year history of Berry swimming and diving with victories in the 200-yard butterfly and the 200 freestyle at the Appalachian Swimming Conference championships. The performance by the Gainesville, Ga., freshman highlighted a seventh-place team finish for the Berry men. The women’s team also placed seventh in Berry’s final ASC championship appearance. In 2012-13, the Vikings and Lady Vikings will transition to the Southern Athletic Association, Berry’s new NCAA Division III conference.

Read more.

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