Braves Post School-Best Finish In Learfield Sports Directors’ Cup Standings
CLEVELAND – On the shoulders of a spring
season that saw four of its teams make appearances in the NCAA
postseason, the UNCP athletic department posted a school-best 61st
place finish in the final NCAA Division II Learfield Sports
Directors’ Cup Standings released on Friday evening.
The Braves, whose previous best performance in the annual standings came in 2008-09 (140th), finished third in the listing among Peach Belt Conference institutions, falling closely behind PBC Commissioner’s Cup Champion Columbus State (44th) and Flagler (T-49th). Armstrong Atlantic (65th), Augusta State (69th) and Clayton State (75th) all finished in the top-100 as well. A total of 234 institutions were included in this year’s standings.
UNCP, which collected 277-1/2 points to solidify its spot, gained 50 points during fall sports competition on the basis of a 17th place finish by the women’s soccer team which turned in a 16-4-2 record, as well as its second trip to the NCAA Tournament in three seasons. The momentum continued into the winter sports season as UNCP picked up 81-1/2 more points on the shoulders of the men’s basketball team finishing in a tie for 33rd (25 points) after turning in an 18-12 record and its first-ever trip to the NCAA Tournament. The wrestling team followed with a 17th place finish to pick up 56-1/2 more points in the standings.
Passionate about finishing strong, UNCP grabbed four top-55 finishes in the spring sports season, including a 17th place finish by the baseball team (50 points) who turned in a 44-12 record en route to its first NCAA Tournament appearance, as well as a 29th place finish by the women’s golf team which captured the PBC Championship on the way to an invitation to the NCAA Regionals as well. The men’s track & field team turned in a 38th place finish to pick up 34-1/2 points, while the men’s golf team finished 55th nationally to rake in the remaining 18 points after finishing second at the PBC Championships and making an appearance in NCAA regional competition.
The Learfield Sports Directors’ Cup was developed as a joint effort between the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA) and USA Today. Points are awarded based on each institution's finish in up to 14 sports -- seven women’s and seven men’s. Complete standings and the scoring structure can be found on NACDA’s website at http://www.directorscup.org.