Athletics News

2016-2017 Year in Review

July 14, 2017

11th in NCAA Division II Learfield Directors' Cup Standings
National Championships in Women's Soccer & Women's Rowing
13 of 15 programs advanced to their respective NCAA Championships


Western Washington University Athletics completed another excellent year finishing 11th amongst 309 NCAA Division II schools in the 2016-17 Learfield Sports Directors' Cup standings, the 8th top 20 finish in the last 10 years, and 14th consecutive top 50 placement.

The 2016-17 sports season included several standout performances by the 15 intercollegiate programs, highlighted by NCAA II National Championships by Women's Soccer and Women's Rowing. Overall, 13 of the 15 programs advanced to their respective NCAA championships.

The men's and women's basketball programs both returned to the NCAA Tournament, with the Viking men winning the regular-season and GNAC Tournament titles. Volleyball advanced to the postseason for the fifth consecutive season, reaching the NCAA II West Regional Championship contest, and the men's golf team extended its streak of reaching the postseason to 19 consecutive seasons.

Overall Achievements in 2016-17:

  • Finished 11th in the 2016-17 Learfield Sports Directors' Cup Division II standings.
  • Placed 2nd in the overall, men's and women's standings for the GNAC All-Sports Trophy.
  • Won two team national championships in women's soccer and rowing, the 10th and 11th in WWU history, marking the first time to win two national titles in the same season.
  • 13 of 15 programs advanced to their respective NCAA Championships.
  • Four teams won GNAC titles: women's soccer (regular & postseason), men's basketball (regular & postseason), men's golf and softball.
  • WWU was one of only three Division II schools to have its women's soccer, men's soccer and volleyball programs advance to the NCAA Championships during the fall season, including the first postseason appearance by the men's soccer team.
  • Bethany Drake won her second NCAA II title in the javelin, becoming a three-time First Team All-American, and was also named the GNAC Scholar-Athlete of the Year and one of 117 Division II nominees for the 2017 NCAA Woman of the Year.
  • All-Americans: 13 student-athletes earned All-America honors during the 2016-17 season, including First Team honors by Sierra Shugarts (women's soccer), Taylor Peacocke (women's basketball), Taylor Stafford (men's basketball), Anna Paradee (indoor track & field), Bethany Drake (outdoor track & field), Karisa Stapp (rowing) and Chloe Burns (rowing).
  • Academic All-Stars: A total of 73 selections to the GNAC Academic All-Star teams, 14 Academic All-District and 2 Academic All-Americans. WWU student-athletes recorded an overall 3.16 GPA.
  • All-GNAC: 56 student-athletes were selected as GNAC All-Stars.
  • GNAC Athlete of the Week: 48 GNAC Athlete of the Week selections and 8 Red Lion Hotels Team of the Week Awards.

WWU Athletics -- by the numbers:

  • 73  --  GNAC Academic All-Stars.
  • 56  --  GNAC All-Conference Selections.
  • 48  --  GNAC Athlete of the Week awards.
  • 41  --  All-Region honors.
  • 23  --  Academic All-Region awards.
  • 13  --  All-America awards.
  • 13  --  Teams that competed at the NCAA Championships (out of 15).
  • 8    --  GNAC Team of the Week awards.
  • 4    --  GNAC Team Championships in Women's Soccer, Men's Basketball, Men's Golf and Softball.
  • 2    --  Academic All-Americans (Elise Aylward -- Soccer and Bethany Drake -- Track & Field).

2016-17 WWU Athletics Award Winners:

2017 WWU Athletics Hall of Fame Inductees:

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