Ten Years in Division I

A look back at athletics’ milestones of the last decade

By Kobee Stalder

UNC completes three-year transition from Division II to Division I.

June 9 – Tyler Pearson and Brennan Garr are drafted by the Texas Rangers and Kansas City Royals. First baseball players to be drafted since joining Division I.

July 1 – UNC joins the Big Sky Conference.

April 23 – Women’s tennis qualifies for the Big Sky Tournament.

Nov. 29 – First Big Sky Championship in any sport. Women’s volleyball wins the postseason tournament. NCAA first-round participant, plays sixth-seeded Washington, loses 3-1.

Dec. 3 – Lyndsey Oates named Big Sky Coach of the Year in volleyball. First Coach-of-the-Year award for any UNC team since becoming DI.

Feb. 27 – School records in wins for men’s basketball. First season qualifying for the Big Sky tournament.

March 12 – Swimming and diving sends Kelly Schmeckpeper-Cook to NCAA Zone E Championships. First diver to qualify for NCAAs Zone in UNC’s DI history. She finishes 18th.

March 20 – Justin Gaethje takes seventh place at NCAA Championships, becomes first All-American for wrestling in 40 years.

June 10 – Rachael Stevens becomes first track-and-field athlete to qualify for NCAA Division I Championships in the high jump.

Nov. 2 – Danielle Birdsall becomes first athlete to be named an MVP for UNC in the conference when she is named the Big Sky Offensive MVP in women’s soccer.

Nov. 20 – Big Sky regular season co-champions in volleyball.

March 3 – Devon Beitzel named 2011 Big Sky MVP for men’s basketball.

March 5 – Big Sky regular season co-champions in women’s basketball. Advance to the WNIT for first time in DI history. Loses at CSU-Bakersfield 84-73.

March 9 – Men’s basketball becomes first UNC men’s team to win a Big Sky postseason championship. NCAA participant earns a No. 15 seed. Plays second-seeded San Diego State, loses 68-50.

March 12 – Head Coach B.J. Hill named Big Sky Coach of the Year.

June 8 – Baseball player Jarod Berggren drafted by the Colorado Rockies.

Oct. 23 – Women’s soccer wins Big Sky regular season title.

Nov. 9 – Women’s soccer coach Tim Barrera named Big Sky Coach of the Year.

Nov. 24 – Kelley Arnold named Big Sky Conference MVP in volleyball.

Nov. 26 – Big Sky regular and postseason champions in volleyball. NCAA participant, plays third-seeded Hawaii, loses 3-0.

Nov. 24 – Big Sky postseason champions in volleyball. NCAA participant, plays fifth-seeded Oregon, loses 3-0.

March 12 – D’shara Strange named Big Sky Defensive MVP, College Sports Madness Second Team All-Mid Major in women’s basketball.

March 24 – Women’s basketball advances to second round in WNIT for the first time in UNC’s DI history. Defeats Wyoming 71-63. Loses in second round to St. Mary’s, 68-58.

April 24 - Men's tennis sets a NCAA Division I program record with 12 wins.

April 24 – Women’s golf wins Big Sky Championship, first time since joining the conference. 

May 2 - Brando Lupo is the first men's tennis player named to first team All-Big Sky in program history. Finishes 15-3 overall.

May 17 – Baseball wins Great West Conference regular season title, marking just the fifth time in school history the team has won 30 games.

May 20 – Baseball head Coach Carl Iwasaki named Coach of the Year by the Great West Conference. Jensen Park named conference MVP.

June 5 – Trevor Evanson becomes first track-and-field male athlete to qualify for the NCAA Championships in Eugene, Ore. Finishes 21st in the high jump with a 2.05m mark.

Nov. 2 – Rikki Gonzales finishes fourth in Big Sky Cross Country Championships. Highest finish of any UNC racer at the DI level.

Feb. 10 – Baseball joins the Western Athletic Conference.

April 27 – Men’s golf wins America Sky Conference Championship, advances to NCAA Tournament for first time in UNC’s DI history. Finishes 13th at NCAA Regionals.

May 8 – The NCAA recognizes the women’s basketball program for its Academic Progress Rate, marking the third consecutive year the program has been honored nationally.

May 14 – Softball head coach Shana Easley named Big Sky Coach of the Year after leading the team to its first ever postseason Big Sky appearance.

May 21 – Roger Prenzlow named America Sky Coach of the Year for men’s golf.

June 14 – Swimming and diving joins the WAC Conference.

Nov. 4 – Adrienne Jordan named Big Sky Defensive MVP in women’s soccer.

Nov. 22 – Big Sky postseason champions in volleyball. NCAA participant, plays Colorado, loses 3-1. Only team to sweep through the Big Sky tournament in program history; wins every match 3-0.

Nov. 28 – Head coach Lyndsey Oates named 2014 Big Sky Coach of the Year.

March 7 – Wrestling sends three to NCAA Tournament, tying for the most to go since joining DI.

March 15 – Savanna Meadows becomes UNC’s first WAC Diver of the Year in DI history.

March 22 – Women’s basketball earns a school record in wins under first-year head coach, Kamie Ethridge. Defeats Colorado State and South Dakota in first two rounds. Advances to third round of WNIT, loses at UCLA 74-60, marking the furthest the team has advanced in any postseason tournament.

May 5 – Track and field sends five student-athletes to the NCAA Regional — the largest group of student-athletes UNC’s squad has sent to the NCAA West Regional since joining DI.

May 19 – Jensen Park named WAC Player of the Year for baseball.

June 10 –Park is drafted by the Colorado Rockies in the 32nd round.

July 27 – Wrestling joins the Big 12 Conference.

Nov. 3 – Adrienne Jordan named Defensive MVP in Big Sky Conference for women’s soccer.

Nov. 8 – Women’s soccer wins Big Sky postseason championship, defeating Idaho in 3-0 penalty kick shootout.
Nov. 13 – Women’s soccer advances to NCAA Tournament for first time in UNC’s DI history. Loses at Arizona 2-0.

Nov. 13 – Women’s soccer advances to NCAA Tournament for first time in UNC’s DI history. Lost at Arizona, 2-0.