OBU volleyball owned one of the smoother transitions to NCAA Division II.
Despite putting together a tough Division II schedule, the Lady Bison compiled a 27-13 record, a second-place finish in the Great American Conference and a spot in the National Christian College Athletic Association championship finals.
Additionally, senior libero Kaitlyn Lucy put OBU on the Division II radar, establishing a new NCAA Division II record with 978 digs on the season.
OBU went 5-9 in non-conference regular season matches against a field of tradition-rich Division II competition.
That toughness conditioned the Lady Bison for a successful conference season in which the team, despite injuries to mainstays Cadyn Laing and Denise Coroiescu, went 14-2.
OBU was picked to finish fourth in the league, but lost only to Ouachita Baptist and eventual GAC regular season champion Arkansas Tech. The Lady Bison owned a season sweep of GAC Tournament champion Southwestern Oklahoma State. The Lady Bison were 7-0 in GAC road matches.
The NCCAA postseason saw OBU sweep through pool play at both the regional and the national tournament. At the Central Regional, OBU knocked off host Oklahoma Wesleyan in the semifinals and then fell to Colorado Christian in five sets in the championship match.
OBU took an at-large berth to the national tournament and went 3-0 against its pool, including a five-set win over top-seeded Indiana Wesleyan. The Lady Bison defeated Southern Wesleyan in the semifinals before Indiana Wesleyan got its revenge with a 3-0 win over the Lady Bison in the championship bout.
Records and awards stacked up for the squad.
Lucy finished with school records for career and single season digs and digs per set and the NCAA single season digs record. Freshman Nicole Fleitman set the single season OBU record with 136 blocks.
Lucy was named GAC Defensive Player of the Year and first-team All-Conference with Cat Roth and Kynnedy Myers earning second-team honors and Coroiescu and Fleitman listed as honorable mention.
Lucy also earned NCCAA Central Region Player of the Year honors and was joined on the All-Region First Team by Roth and Myers with Carey Strong making second team.
The NCCAA All-America squad was led by Lucy as well, with Roth and Myers making second-team.
Strong earned All-Tournament honors at the NCCAA championships.
OBU also had a record five players named College Sports Information Directors of America Academic All-District with Coroiescu, Strong, Roth, Lucy and Priscila Mendes making the list.