Led by head coach Jenifer Bahner and assistant coach Riann Mullis, Cowley recently captured the program’s first national title in Toledo, Ohio. The Lady Tigers finished the year with a 22-match win streak and a record of 38-2. Along the way, Cowley claimed its fourth straight Jayhawk East title by going 10-0 in the conference. Sophomore setter Molley Scanlon was named the national tournament’s Most Valuable Player, while outside hitter Danika Maggard and freshman right side hitter Martyna Gluchowicz joined Scanlon on the All-Tournament Team. After leading Cowley to a pair of top-three national finishes in her first two seasons as coach, Jenifer Bahner topped that by keeping her team at the top-spot in the national rankings throughout the season. For her efforts, Bahner was named Jayhawk East Coach of the Year, and was recently named the NJCAA Division II National Coach of the Year. During Cowley’s run to the title Bahner recorded her 100th win as coach of the Lady Tigers.
After improving its win total in each of the first three seasons of the program, the Tigers had a breakthrough season in year four of the program. Following up last season’s 9-8-1 campaign, Cowley finished the 2011 season with a 13-3-2 record. The Tigers finished just one point out of the Jayhawk Conference title and won their first-ever region playoff game with a 4-0 win over Kansas City. Freshman Ruy Vaz was named the Kansas Jayhawk Community College Conference Offensive Player of the Year. Vaz was among six Tiger soccer players to be named all-conference. The freshman forward from Sao Paulo, Brazil, set a school-record with 19 goals and 41 points scored on the season. Joining Vaz on the first-team all-conference list was sophomore Tiger defender Mike Muller, who not only provided stellar defense, but also chipped in with a goal and two assists. Sophomore forward Saxx Adams (seven goals, three assists) was named second-team all-conference, as was sophomore midfielder Antonio Ayres (three goals, two assists) and sophomore defender Juan Delgado. Sophomore midfielder Jesus “Junior” Velasquez (three goals, five assists) was also recognized as an honorable mention all-conference selection.
Battling injury to key players, the Lady Tiger soccer team finished the year with a record of 7-10-1 overall and 4-7-1 in the Jayhawk Conference. The Lady Tigers ended up in ninth place in the conference and region, just missing out on one of the top-eight spots in the region playoffs. The Lady Tigers will say goodbye to eight sophomores. The sophomores are, Bailey Martinson (11 goals, 11 assists in career), Teryn Engels (four goals, four assists), Dakota Osborne (six goals, eight assists), Maricarmen Visoso (eight assists), Nayara Do Carmo (four assists), Tiffany Clock, Alejandra Alonso, and Erika Carpenter. Tiffany Clock was named an honorable mention all-conference selection after providing solid defense throughout the season.
Women’s Cross Country
Coming up just short of its goal of repeating as conference and region champions, the No. 8-ranked Cowley College women’s cross country team placed second behind Johnson County at the Region VI/Jayhawk Conference Championships held in Garden City. The second place finish ends the Lady Tigers’ two-year reign as conference and region champions.
Cowley sophomore Jessalyn Lanoy (20:12.60) led the way as the Jayhawk East conference runner-up and placed fifth in the Region giving her first-team all-conference and all-region honors. Fellow sophomore Maria Schmidt (20:26.20) placed third in the conference race and seventh in the region garnering her first-team Jayhawk East honors and second-team Region VI honors.
Men’s Cross Country
Unable to stay healthy enough to field a full squad, the Cowley men’s cross country team had its hopes of another national title dashed. Freshman Jack Taylor, who was one of three Tiger runners to compete at the region meet, finished eighth in the Jayhawk East and 22nd in the Region VI race. By finishing in the top-10 individuals not on a top-three team in Region VI, Taylor earned a spot in the national race as an individual.
Playing a challenging first semester schedule, the Cowley College men’s basketball team won its final five games and head into the Winter Break with a record of 10-2. Among its 10 wins, Cowley defeated Pratt Community College twice, knocked off six schools from Oklahoma, and defeated a pair of teams at the Marshalltown Tournament played in Marshalltown, Iowa. Freshman James Milliken leads the team in scoring with an average of 15.1 points per game, while sophomore forward Kamren Belin is averaging 12.6 points and 8.5 rebounds per contest. Cowley will not return to action until Jan. 4 when they play at Fort Scott at 7:30 p.m. The Tigers’ next home game is scheduled for Saturday, Jan. 7 when they take on Neosho County at 7 p.m.
Ending the first semester on a five-game winning streak, the Cowley College women’s basketball team takes a 9-3 record into the Winter Break. With five players averaging at least 8 points per game, the Lady Tigers are averaging the third most points per game (68.1) in the Jayhawk Conference Eastern Division. Sophomore Symone Murray leads Cowley with an average of 11.5 points and 5.6 rebounds per game, while guard Breanna Bryant is averaging 10 points and five boards. Cowley has played especially well at home, going 5-0 with its average margin of victory being 17 points per game. The Lady Tigers will look to continue its winning ways when they open play in the Jayhawk East Jan. 4 at Fort Scott. Cowley will then return home to play Neosho County Saturday, Jan. 7 at 5 p.m.