Oklahoma City University expects to continue contending in women’s wrestling circles following a banner year in its first season of existence.<o></o>
The Stars finished as national runners-up and dual champions with three individual champions, four finalists and 14 all-Americans last season. The majority of that team returns for 2008-09, including 12 of those all-Americans, three of those finalists and two of those champs.
OCU opens the season against Lindenwood (Mo.) at 1 p.m. Saturday at Abe Lemons Arena.

“We have the best recruiting class and the best returnees in the nation,” OCU coach Archie Randall said. “We lost the national title by one point. It isn’t cocky if you say it and back it up. We will wrestle the World Team, and we expect to fill five weights in the WCWA all-star team.”<o></o>

Carrie Clark
, a sophomore from Cedar Park, Texas, comes off capturing the national championship at 82 kilograms and running up a 16-2 record and figures to be a force again.<o></o>

Melissa Simmons, a junior from Ridgefield, Wash., won the 72-kilo national title and went 14-5. Simmons will miss the first portion of the season recovering from off-season surgery.<o></o>
A weight-by-weight look at the Stars:<o></o>
<o></o>
44 (97)<o></o>
<o></o>
Stephanie Waters, a sophomore from Joliet, Ill., placed third at 44 kilos last season. She opens at the top of the depth chart this season.<o></o>
Renee Mitchell, a freshman from Waikoloa, Hawaii, is a highly-regarded prospect who will compete with Waters. Sara Rowen, a freshman from Vancouver, Wash., will provide depth.<o></o>
<o></o>
48 (105)
<o></o>
Nicole Woody, a sophomore from Gambrills, Md., finished runner-up at this class last season and won the 44-kilo title at the Pan American Junior Championships in the off-season. Woody will compete with Lene Wood, who moves up from 44 kilos after a runner-up performance last season.<o></o>
Joey Miller, a freshman from Woodward, Okla., joins the Stars after being the most highly-touted female high-school wrestler in Oklahoma history, making this a highly competitive weight. T.J. Cannon, a freshman from Arlington, Texas, will provide backup.<o></o>
<o></o>
51 (112)<o></o>
<o></o>
Erica Torres, a sophomore from Porterville, Calif., placed fourth at this weight last season and is expected to be an all-American once again. LeAnn Barney, a junior from Austin, Texas, will push for the starting position here after recovering from injuries that hampered her last season.<o></o>
Mia Provence, a freshman from Arlington, Texas, is one of the most skilled and talented recruits OCU signed this year.<o></o>
<o></o>
55 (121)<o></o>
<o></o>
Ashley Hudson, a sophomore from Wildwood, Mo., finished fourth at 55 in 2007-08. Na’Tasha Umemoto, a freshman from Portland, Ore., will provide Hudson competition here. <o></o>
Emma Mercer, a sophomore from Lawrence, Kan., improved in the off-season. Michaela Hutchison, a freshman from Soldotna, Alaska, should live up to her billing as the top recruit in the nation.<o></o>
<o></o>
59 (130)
<o></o>
Samantha Phillips, a sophomore from Manteca, Calif., finished fourth in the nation at 59 last year and may move to another weight. Firen Gassman, a freshman from Fairfax, Va., has a physical style. Sheila McCabe, a junior from El Cajon, Calif., used the off-season well and put in much work.<o></o>
<o></o>
63 (138)<o></o>
<o></o>
Tessa Plana, a freshman from Coppell, Texas, has impressed since arriving on campus.<o></o>
<o></o>
67 (147)<o></o>
<o></o>
Stefenie Shaw, a sophomore from Waterford, Conn., comes off winning the U.S. Senior Nationals championship. Sara Hilliard, a senior from Lawrence, Kan., took fourth last season at 67, while Ashley Sword, a senior from West Palm Beach, Fla., went 17-9 with a national runner-up finish in 2007-08.<o></o>
<o></o>
72 (158)<o></o>
<o></o>
Lacey Novinska, a senior from Fennimore, Wis., will seek to become a four-time all-American this year after finishing third as a junior. Simmons will provide competition.<o></o>
<o></o>
82 (181)<o></o>
<o></o>
Beyond Clark, Karon Scott, a sophomore from Austin, Texas, finished as a national runner-up at 95 kilos and should provide quality competition.<o></o>
<o></o>
95 (209)<o></o>
<o></o>
Brittany Delgado, a freshman from Simpsonville, S.C., arrives after being the top wrestler at her class during high school.<o></o><o></o>

OCU ought to have the team to reach its goals.

“We plan on repeating as dual champions and winning the national title in January,” Randall said. “We have added talented athletes. The team is solid and without holes. Each weight is loaded.”