March 26, 2014
NACOGDOCHES, Texas – Stephen F. Austin will turn its attention to the USBC National Championships next month as the Ladyjacks were left out of the eight-team NCAA Championship field, announced today.
“Obviously we’re extremely disappointed as we put together some great team performances in some of the toughest events of the year,” said head coach Amber Lemke. “But this doesn’t define our season. It has been a remarkable year and now this will give us some motivation to bowl our best when we head to nationals next month.”
SFA, currently ranked ninth in the latest NTCA coaches poll, was on the outside looking in as the NCAA announced the qualifying teams Wednesday afternoon. Arkansas State, Central Missouri, Nebraska, Maryland-Eastern Shore, Fairleigh Dickinson, Vanderbilt, Sam Houston State and Wisconsin-Whitewater comprise the 2014 championship field.
But missing out on a bid to the NCAA tournament does little to overshadow what has been a groundbreaking season for SFA bowling. The Ladyjacks finished in the top-five in seven of their nine tournaments, competing in some of the most competitive events of the season.
SFA’s run included capturing the first tournament titles in program history with victories at the Tulane Invitational and the FDU Jamboree. The Ladyjacks also were ranked as high as fourth in the NTCA polls, the highest ranking in program history.
SFA is coming off a strong showing at the USBC Sectionals in Fort Worth as the Ladyjacks placed second and earned a spot in the USBC Championships next month. The national tournament will be held April 15-18 in Reno, Nev.