Milligan Notes: Volleyball on a roll in AAC

Tanner Cook • Updated Oct 11, 2017 at 8:00 PM

The Milligan women’s volleyball team has been on a roll lately, winning four of its last five matches, all of them on the road.

The lone loss was to Montreat at home.

Senior Marissa Langford has been one of the leaders for the team all season after returning from an injury, and freshman Julia Codispoti has also been one of the offensive forces behind the recent Buffs surge.

“It’s always tough to go on the road and win in the conference,” coach Doneva Bays said. “It has really helped that we’ve gotten good quality wins over teams that are athletic in our conference and those wins will help us down the road.”

The regular season champion this year does not receive an automatic bid to the NAIA turnament, so all the focus is geared toward the Appalachian Athletic Conference tournament, according to Bays.

“We like the way Julia has developed throughout the season,” Bays said. “We hope she continues to excel so that she can have a chance at winning freshman of the year.”

The AAC tournament will be Nov. 8-11 in Kingsport at the Meadowview Marriott.


In the first meet of the season, at Lindsey Wilson College in Columbia, Kentucky, the Milligan swim team had some terrific results and quick times.

Freshman Margaret Halloran set a Buffs record in the mile and also qualified for the national meet with her time of 18:00.98, besting the previous record by 48 seconds. This time earned her the win in the event. She also set the school record for the 1.000 free by 30 seconds.

Chris Evangelista and a couple of relay teams provided more highlights to the evening session. Evangelista finished third in the 100 freestyle with a national qualifying time of 49.79. Milligan’s 400 freestyle relays on the men’s (3:25.17) and women’s (4:00.15) sides also earned national cuts to round out the day’s events.

Sara Farmer, a school-record holder herself, earned a national qualifying time in the 100 backstroke with a 1:03.97. She finished second in the event out of 17 swimmers.

Halloran highlighted the first session with a win and new school record in the 500 free. She swam it in 5:18.13 and was the top time among 17 swimmers. Halloran won the event by over 25 seconds, set the Milligan record by five seconds, and earned a nationaI qualifying time.

Several relays also earned national qualifying marks on Friday. The women’s 200 free relay, which consisted of Farmer, Grow, Clark and Halloran, did a time of 1:45.02 to place second out of 12 teams and earn a nationals cut by 10 seconds. The women’s B relay also earned a nationals cut time in the same event with a time of 1:51.01.

The men placed third in the team competition while the women placed fourth.

Men’s Golf

Sophomore Thomas Messenheimer and freshman Gibson Miller landed spots on the all-tournament team to lead the Milligan College men’s golf team to a runner-up finish at the Appalachian Athletic Conference Fall Championship.

Messenheimer and Miller tied for third, each shooting 147 for the two day event.

Reinhardt (301-290) carded a tournament low on Tuesday’s round to move up three spots and secure the team title. The field was 11 AAC teams including No. 18 ranked Point University, the tournament host who finished third behind Milligan at 599.

Team scoring from the fall championship will combine with scoring from the spring championship in determining the AAC regular-season champion. Last season, Milligan was runner-up in the fall and champion in the spring.

Cross Country

The men’s and women’s cross country teams traveled to the Allen and Phyllis Morgan Invitational at Carson-Newman and dominated the fields.

Both the No. 25 men’s and No. 15 women’s squads won the event while senior Sarah Kate Gartman won the women’s 5K individually with a time of 18:33.

Nine Buffs placed in the top 20 and five placed in the top nine for the men. Sophomore Sam Wehner paced the Buffs and placed third overall with a time of 15:47 while freshman Nathan Baker finished fifth overall with a time of 15:51. Sophomore Mitch Bronstetter finished seventh overall with a time of 16:03. Following directly behind Bronstetter was freshman Tim Thacker also last week’s AAC Runner of the Week, finishing eighth with a time of 16:10.

Both Gartman and and Wehner earned AAC Runners of the Week.

Johnson City Press Videos