SAN ANTONIO (Feb. 7, 2018) – Our Lady of the Lake University (OLLU) and the nation recognizes today as National Girls & Women in Sports Day (NGWSD). This year marks the 32nd year of the national event that celebrates the extraordinary achievements of women and girls in sports with fair play and Title IX.
Dr. Marcheta P. Evans, OLLU's Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, commented, "I am so excited that we celebrate at OLLU the outstanding accomplishments of our female student athletes. As a person and female who tried to play every sport imaginable, I know first-hand the potential struggle for equity that women sports programs have to navigate in athletic arenas. I am proud to say that at OLLU - with the establishment of a new positon for Senior Women's Administrator - we are taking positive steps to ensure our female student-athletes' voices are heard."
"We take great pride in the success of our women's teams at OLLU," said Adrienne Rodriguez, Senior Women's Athletic Administrator at OLLU. "One of our first teams that began competing through the NAIA is volleyball in 2007, and we have since added soccer in 2008, basketball, cross-country and softball in 2009, and track and field in 2014. All of the teams have had great success, and we look forward to their future accomplishments in the classroom, in the community and in their playing field."
This year's theme is "Play Fair, Play IX." NGWSD is a time to celebrate the extraordinary achievements in girls and women's sports and the positive influence athletic participation brings to their lives. NGWSD recognizes the ongoing effort toward equality and access for women in sports and the nation's commitment to expand sport and participation opportunities for all girls and future generations.
OLLU sponsors six intercollegiate women's teams through the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) and the Red River Athletic Conference (RRAC). All of the women's teams have been successful with multiple conference and national postseason appearances and winning records.
The cross-country, soccer, softball and volleyball teams have been named NAIA Scholar Teams, plus individuals from all teams with 3.0 GPAs and above have earned a multitude of RRAC Scholar Athlete, NAIA Scholar Athlete and Academic All-District awards.
The teams also have had great success as active participants in the NAIA's Champions of Character program. Many of the women's teams have volunteered at the Haven for Hope homeless shelter, the San Antonio Food Bank, the YMCA, the Amazing Grace Organization, the Animal Defense League, Feed My Starving Children, the American Heart Association and at various elementary schools in the San Antonio-area.
Taylor Doege (SR/San Antonio, Texas), one of OLLU's most successful female athletes, is playing her last year on the Saints softball team. Doege has received NAIA All-American, RRAC All-Conference, National Fastpitch Coaches Association All-American recognition and an array of national and conference academic awards. "Sport is amazing. It teaches, inspires and drives athletes to excel beyond their limits on and off the field or court," Doege commented. "Playing softball and being a female athlete have left a profound impact on my life by building my confidence, leadership skills and work ethic. Being a part of a team and being surrounded by powerful and talented women have also built my collaborative skills, and both have inspired me to be the best person I can be. Getting the opportunity to be a female athlete at Our Lady of the Lake University has put me in the position to share these skills with young athletes to not only build the softball community, but to inspire the new generation of female athletes to come."
This season marks the first year for Assistant Women's Basketball Coach Stacy Stephens. Stephens joined the OLLU staff after a three-year stint as assistant coach at NCAA DI Sam Houston State University. Prior to that, she was a special assistant at the University of Texas at Austin after an illustrious collegiate career with the Longhorns. In October of 2017, she was inducted into the UT Athletics Women's Hall of Honor. "The introduction of Title IX is one of the most important things to happen for girls and women in sports. The main thing I have learned as a coach and player is the importance to have coaches like Jody Conradt, Karen Aston, Buddy Hawkins and Christopher Minner [OLLU Head Women's Basketball Coach], who enpower young women to become strong, confident leaders wherever their careers take them."
Other females on the OLLU Athletics Staff include Assistant Women's Soccer Coach Teegan Luckemeyer, Assistant to Vice President for Student Life/Athletic Director and Business Manager/Budget Analyst Amelia Guzman, Sports Information Director Patty Constantin, Sports Information Assistant Sera Quiroga and Assistant Athletic Trainer Alyssa Guerra.
OLLU's women's teams and their accomplishments are as follows:
|Team||Career Record||Season Finish||Postseason Finish||Nationals|
Miriam Vazquez-2009/7th Place; 2010/5th Place; 2011/7th Place
2009-2011 – 1 Individual
Laura Echeverria-2012/9th Place; Mariana Hurtado-2012/10th;
2012 – 3 Individuals
2013 RRAC Champs
2014 – 3 Individuals
2015-2017 RRAC Champs
2016 RRAC Champs
2017 RRAC Champs
2013-2016 Season Champs
2013-2016 RRAC Champs
2013-2016 First Round Participants
2015-2017 Season Champs
2015-2017 RRAC Champs
2015-2016 Opening Round; 2017 Pool Play
2012-2017 Season Champs
2015, 2016 RRAC Champs
2011-2013, 2017 First Round; 2013-2016 Sweet 16 Round
2014 Season Champs
2014 RRAC Champs
2014 Opening Round
Track and Field
Jennifer Ramirez and Miki Romain (SO/Round Rock, Texas)-2016 Indoor Hurdles
2016-2 Individual (Indoor)
Jenifer Ramirez-2017 Outdoor Hurdles
2017 – 1 Individual Woman (Outdoor)
National Girls & Women in Sports Day (NGWSD) began in 1987 as a special day in our nation's capital to recognize women's sports. The day united premiere organizations and elite female athletes to bring national attention to the promise of girls and women in sports.
In 1987, NGWSD also served as a remembrance of Olympic volleyball player, Flo Hyman, for her athletic achievements and dedication to promoting equality for women's sports; Hyman died of Marfan's Syndrome in 1986. NGWSD has since evolved into an event to acknowledge the accomplishments of female athletes, the positive influence of sports participation and the continuing struggle for equality for women in sports.
NGWSD is celebrated annually across all 50 states with community-based events, award ceremonies and other celebratory activities. NGWSD is organized by the members of the National Girls & Women in Sports Day Coalition. Champion women athletes have also contributed to annual NGWSD activities.
Our Lady of the Lake University will plan activities and events to celebrate the 33rd event in 2019.