If the National Christian College Athletic Association were a church, you’d need a lot of new pews to fit all the members.
The NCCAA originated in 1982 and has been expanding its programs ever since. This upcoming 2022-23 season, four new teams will join the league, with three of them entering as Division I women’s teams.
Last season, six new teams entered the Division I program and they each experienced different levels of success. Here’s a look at the teams that had the best debut seasons in 2021-22 and the teams joining the NCCAA this fall.
NEW IN 2021-2022:
The Sterling College Warriors joined the Central Region when they announced their dual membership in the NCCAA. The Warriors dominated in their first season in the league by averaging 83.7 points per game (second in the league).
By the end of the season they had a stellar record of 31-2 and finished second in the league’s rankings. They were led by senior Bailey Albright (third best scorer in the league), senior Emmiley Hendrixson (9th best scorer in the league) and junior Taya Wilson (15th best scorer in the league) who all averaged over 15 points per game.
The Mideast Region also welcomed the Asbury University Eagles last year. In their first season the Eagles managed to be the No. 2 seed in the Division I Women’s Basketball National Championship.
Although they fell to Roberts Wesleyan College in the semifinals, the Eagles finished seventh in the league’s rankings. Asbury scored the fifth most points in the league per game (78.7) and only allowed 61.7 points per game, finishing with a solid record of 20-7.
The Malone University Pioneers also proved their worthiness in the NCCAA. They finished with a 15-12 record and averaged the 13th most points per game last season. Graduate student Holly Groff led the team last season with 14.4 points per game (22nd best in the league).
Malone’s Director of Athletics, Tanya Hockman, said of the team joining the league: “we are excited to reunite with Christian universities across the country who passionately integrate faith and sport."
NEW FOR 2022-2023
The Clinton College Golden Bears will be joining the NCCAA in the South Region upon the start of the 2022-23 season. The Rock Hill, S.C. squad finished last season with a gaudy record of 19-3 and won the Eastern Metro Athletic Conference Championship. Joining the Golden Bears on their trip to the NCCAA next season will be forward Logan Taylor-McDaniel who averaged 20.5 points per game and 9.9 rebounds per game as a junior.
Head coach Jessica Blair and her team will head into the 2022-23 season ready to keep their winning atmosphere alive.
From Lookout Mountain, Ga. Comes the Covenant College Scots, new participants in the Mideast Region of the NCCAA. Last season they had a record of 9-13 and scored 56 points a game.
The Scots only have three seniors going into the next season and will be led by Cosette Kirsch who scored 13.9 points per game as a sophomore in the 2021-22 basketball year. The young team is led by fifth-year head coach Skylar Bareford.
The Redeemer Royals join the NCCAA from Ancaster, Ont. and have a spot in the Midwest Region. Last season the Royals only played 14 games and had a record of 5-9.
Jessica Angelini (14 points per game) and Karyn TeBrake (14.8 points per game) led Redeemer last season and they will both bring their talents to the NCCAA this upcoming season. The Royals are led by Jesse Vanhouwelingen who will enter his fifth season as the team’s head coach.
With the addition of these new schools, the NCCAA now has 49 teams participating in Division I Women’s Basketball and competing for a spot in the National Championship Tournament for the 2022-23 season.
If you enjoyed this article, please consider making a tax deductible donation. College Basketball Times is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to equal coverage of all levels of college hoops - including NCCAA. The operation of this site is made possible through your generous donations.