ASU wins team, individual crowns at Women’s Collegiate Nationals

Arizona State University won its fourth straight NCAA Division I team title at the Women’s Collegiate Triathlon Nationals Championships held at Tempe Town Lake for the third year in a row. Queens University of Charlotte, North Carolina earned its 5th consecutive Division II crown and North Central College won the Division III prize for the 4th year in a row.

On a cloudy 81-degree day in Arizona, 126 competitors from 25 varsity teams contested the 6th women’s collegiate national championship on a sprint–distance course which included a 750-meter swim, a 20 kilometer bike leg and a 5 kilometer run.

ASU stars Kyla Roy and Audrey Ernst finished 1-2 to take individual honors in Division I. Natalie Hidalgo Martinez of Davis and Elkins College won the Division II individual gold and Madelyn Scopp of North Central College won the Division III individual top prize.

The reason that this NCAA Championship has been offered for women only is that triathlon was approved as an NCAA Emerging Sport for Women in 2014, and the first varsity Women’s National Triathlon Championships were held in the Fall of 2015. The sport has a 10-year window to demonstrate sustainability at the NCAA level. The provisional target will be 40 NCAA schools sponsoring varsity women’s triathlon. Currently, 31 schools offer varsity women's triathlon, up from 26 at this time last year.

The ASU Sun Devils, looking for a four-peat, were prohibitive favorites in Division I as they swept all three Regional qualifiers. The squad was led by two-time individual champion Hannah Henry, and Kyla Roy, who won two of the three regional qualifiers.

In the combined DI and DII wave which took off last at 1:30 p.m. ASU’s Lira Stanley led the field out of the water in 9:33, followed closely by Sun Devil teammates Hannah Henry, Audrey Ernst, Kyla Roy and Liberty Ricca and South Dakota’s prime contender Leah Drengenberg. That lead group of six broke away to a one minute lead on the first lap of the bike leg, On the bell lap Roy and Ernst surged into a slight lead.

Roy defended that lead with a race-best 20:15 split for the 5-kilometer run which brought her to the line in 1:05:22 with a 30-seconds margin of victory over Ernst, who lost 27 seconds to Roy’s superior run. Drengenberg of South Dakota grabbed the final spot on the podium with a 21:23 run which left her 1:59 behind the winner.

“It’s so cool to have all my friends and family here in Tempe,” Roy told USA Triathlon media. “Audrey (Ernst) was so strong on the bike, she really pushed the pace. On the run, I just kind of went for it. I thought Audrey was right behind me, and then I got to the turnaround and she was a little bit behind — so I said, ‘Let’s go, Audrey!’”

Natalie Hidalgo Martinez of Davis & Elkins College had a race-best 19:32 run to emerge from the chase pack to win the Division II title and take third overall in 1:06:30. “Of course, my first goal was to be the national DII champion, but when I was biking and running, I started thinking, ‘Okay, never mind DII, DI, I just want to do my best race,” Hidalgo Martinez told USA Triathlon media.“ “This represents how far (her team, Davis & Elkins) can go, because it’s just our second year.”

In the DIII wave which began at 11:30 A.M., Grace Miller of North Central led the swim and teamed up with Amira Faulknere of Trine University to establish an early lead on the bike leg. Miller and Faulknere kept that lead throughout the 20 kilometer bike, arriving at T2 with a significant lead on a chase pack that included Annika Cotner and Madelyn Scopp of North Central and Alexandria Smith of Trine.

Thanks to a Division III best run of 20:45, Scopp crossed the finish line in 1:11:08 with a 19 seconds margin of victory over Faulknere (21:34 run) and 1:33 over 3rd place finisher Cotner (22:16 run).

“It didn’t come easy,” Scopp told USA Triathlon media. “I was working from the back in the swim. On the bike I just worked with my teammates. We all toughed it out and got to the run, which was hard in itself because it was out in the sun. Knowing that the finish line was coming up, that was the motivation. We’re always working together, practicing drafting, pushing each other to do our best, and it’s great that we’re going to be able to represent North Central College here for the first-place team.”

Women’s Collegiate Triathlon National Championship
Tempe, Arizona
November 16, 2019
S 750m / B 20k / R 5k



Division One

1. Kyla Roy (Tempe AZ) 1:05:22 S 09:42 T1 0:14 B 35:35 T2 0:24 R 20:15
2. Audrey Ernst (Tempe AZ) 1:05:52 S 9:46 T1 0:13 B 35:33 T2 0:21 R 20:42
3. Leah Drengenberg (Vermilion, South Dakota) 1:07:21 S 9:42 T1 0:24 B 36:08 T2 0:13 R 21:23
4. Lane McDonald (Johnson) 1:07:42 S 10:39 T1 0:21 B 36:21 T2 0:20 R 20:42
5. Rebecca Naughton (Tempe, Arizona) 1:08:02 S 10:45 T1 0:18 B 36:03 T2 0:19 R 21:17
6. Liberty Ricca (Tempe, Arizona) 1:08:17 S 9:43 T1 0:15 B 37:27 T2 0:21 R 21:14
7. Ella Kubas (Vermillion SD) 1:08:26 S 09:51 T1 0:18 B 37:15 T2 0:21 R 21:25
7. Jenna Goodrum (Mequon WI) 1:09:07 S 11:44 T1 0:22 B 35:49 T2 0:18 R 21:31
9. Samantha Whitting (Vermillion SD) 1:09:08 S 10:37 T1 0:21 B 35:23 T2 0:19 R 22:07
10. Payton Ryz (Vermillion SD) 1:09:32 S 10:46 T1 0:13 B 36:22 T2 0:21 R 22:34

Division Two

1. Natalia Hidalgo Martinez (Elkins WV) 1:06:30 S 10:32 T1 0:15 B 36:32 T2 0:20 R 19:32
2. Natalie Bash (Charlotte NC) 1:07:10 S 10:39 T1 0:24 B 36:20 T2 0:22 R 20:11
3. Sam McInnes (Charlotte NC) 1:07:36 S 10:42 T1 0:21 B 36:18 T2 0:20 R 20:36
4. Nora Pierre (Elkins WV) 1:08:15 S 10:42 T1 0:22 B 36:22 T2 0:22 R 21:12
5. Mazzy Jackson (Grand Junction CO) 1:09:26 S 10:52 T1 0:16 B 36:17 T2 0:14 R 22:17
6. Mathilde Bernard (Spearfish SD) 1:09:49 S 11:12 T1 0:26 B 37:59 T2 0:18 R 20:32
7. Jordan Grantz (Charlotte NC) 1:11:29 S 10:54 T1 0:35 B 38:08 T2 0:16 R 22:09
8. Jayme Vermaas (Springfield MO) 1:11:32 S 11:20 T1 0:22 B 37:52 T2 0:18 R 22:18
9. Paola Horvat (Charlotte NC) 1:11:49 S 10:38 T1 0:25 B 36:20 T2 0:15 R 24:43
10. Lia Federbusch (Charlotte NC) 1:12:23 S 11:08 T1 0:30 B 37:56 T2 0:18 R 23:08

Division Three

1. Madelyn Scopp (Decatur IL) 1:11:08 S 12:27 T1 0:29 B 37:48 T2 N/A R 20:45
2. Amira Faulknere (Indianapolis IN) 1:11:27 S 11:08 T1 0:39 B 38:07 T2 N/A R 21:34
3. Annika Cotner (Grand Rapids MI) 1:12:41 S 11:53 T1 0:23 B 38:09 N/A R 22:16
4. Rachel Ruona (Grand Rapids MI) 1:13:13 S 14:32 T1 0:23 B 37:50 T2 N/A R 21:34
5. Alexandria Smith (Temporance MI) 1:14:01 S 11:38 T1 0:21 B 38:27 T2 N/A R 23:37
6. Grace Miller (Johnson) 1:15:10 S 11:03 T1 0:24 B 38:20 T2 N/A R 25:25
7. Morgan Powers (Decatur IL) 1:16:18 S 14:01 T1 0:27 B 37:47 T2 N/A R 24:05
8. Molly Olk (Decatur IL) 1:17:11 S 12:18 T1 0:25 B 39:15 T2 N/A R 24:44
9. Grayson Bray (Ballwin MO) 1:17:36 S 11:47 T1 0:31 B 41:14 T2 N/A R 23:54
10. Hope Roderick (Decatur IL) 1:17:36 S 11:24 T1 0:30 B 41:18 T2 M/A R 24:24

Collegiate Club Individual

1. Jenna Goodrum (University of Utah) 1:09:07


Division One

1. Arizona State University 8 points
2. University of South Dakota 18
3. East Tennessee State University 29

Division Two

1. Queens University of Charlotte 12 points
2. Davis and Elkins College 17
3. Black Hills State University 33

Division Three

1. North Central College 10 points
2. Trine University 25
3. Millikin University 28