Teams to compete in national championships


Story by Sara

While their regular seasons have ended, three Baker University fall sports teams have earned bids to the NAIA National Championships.

The men’s cross country team, the football team and the women’s soccer team will all compete Saturday.

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As it climbed in and out of the NAIA top 25 poll, the men’s cross country earned the recognition the Wildcats had been hoping for all season Nov. 3, by claiming the Heart of America Athletic Conference title. The team will represent the HAAC in the NAIA Championships Saturday in Vancouver, Wash.

Although the women’s cross country team finished second behind Central Methodist University for a second-straight season at the conference meet, juniors Lauren Jaqua and Ashley McBride and sophomore Kerry Kurta qualified to compete at nationals for their performances in Lamoni, Iowa, during the HAAC Championships.

After finishing its regular season at 8-2, the No. 11 BU football team earned a spot in the NAIA Football Championship Series for the first time since 2008. The Wildcats will face No. 6 the University of Saint Francis, which is also 8-2 on the season, at 11 a.m. Saturday in Fort Wayne, Ind.

Despite falling in the Heart of America Athletic Conference Tournament semifinal Nov. 6, the women’s soccer team earned an at-large bid to the opening round of the NAIA National Championship tournament. The No. 14 seed Wildcats will host Bellevue University in the opening round for the second-straight year at 5:30 p.m. Saturday at Liston Stadium.