Denison (18-2) claimed its third North Coast Athletic Conference tournament title on Saturday afternoon with a 2-0 victory over Wooster (15-6) in Granville, Ohio.
The Big Red got off to a quick start when AC Veith (Alexandria, Va./St. Stephen's & St. Agnes School) scored her fourth goal of the season off of an assist from Abby Scully (Charlotte, N.C./Providence Day School) just 7:41 into the contest. Denison then found the back of the cage again at the 17:18 mark when Kat Swan (Cape May, N.J./Lower Cape May Regional) setup Charlotte Godfrey (Denver, CO/Cherry Creek) to score her eighth goal of the season. The half ended with the Big Red claiming an 11-0 advantage in shots and 3-0 edge in penalty corners.
Denison continued to apply pressure in the second half looking to extend the lead but Wooster sophomore Katie Shideler (Gibsonia, Pa./North Allegheny) denied the Big Red on several chances with great saves. The Big Red tallied seven shots in the second half to The Fighting Scots' one, while earning another four corners in the final 35 minutes and Wooster claimed two.
Shideler finished with 10 saves for the Fighting Scots, while Denison sophomore goalkeeper Teya Adams' (Rochester, N.H./Berwick Academy) defense held Wooster to no shots on goal. With the win, Denison extends its unbeaten streak to 13 games and will represent the NCAC in the 2018 NCAA Division III Tournament for the 13th time in program history. The NCAA selections will be released late Sunday evening.
Hannah Sklar, Kenyon
Molly Keen, Kenyon
Blaine Donnelly, Wittenberg
Allie Purvis, Wittenberg
Katie Shideler, Wooster
Erika Womack, Wooster
Rose Taylor, Wooster
Charlotte Godfrey, Denison
Michelle Kabaira, Denison
Abby Scully, Denison
MVP: AC Veith, Denison
|Semifinal Games||Championship Game|
|Wednesday, October 31||Saturday, November 3|
|#1 Denison 3, #4 Wittenberg 0 - Boxscore||#1 Denison 2, #2 Wooster 0 - Boxscore|
|#2 Wooster 2, #3 Kenyon 1 (OT) - Boxscore|
|Tournament Merchandise -- History -- Tournament Stats -- Tickets -- Directions|
The seeds held in the semifinal round of the 2018 NCAC Field Hockey Tournament on Wednesday afternoon, as top-seeded Denison claimed a 3-0 win over fourth-seeded Wittenberg and second-seeded Wooster recorded a 2-1 overtime victory against third-seeded Kenyon. The Big Red will now host the Fighting Scots in Saturday's championship game at 12:00 p.m.
The Fighting Scots booked their ticket to the championship game for the eighth time, first time since 2010, after sophomore Sydney Schuster (Ann Arbor, Mich./Skyline) broke the 1-1 tie seven minutes into overtime off of an assist from sophomore Caitlyn O'Connor (Massapequa Park, N.Y./Massapequa). Wooster got on the board first in the contest on O'Connor's first assist of the game as she led senior Maeven Barry (Ann Arbor, Mich./Greenhills School) to score at 20:14. The Ladies found the equalizer just over three minutes later as sophomore Paulina Mendez (Ottawa Hills, Ohio/Ottawa Hills) found the back of the cage at 23:38. Neither team would score the go-ahead goal throughout the remainder of the game. Kenyon applied pressure throughout the game with 12 shots and seven penalty corners while holding Wooster to seven shots and four corners in regulation. In the cage, Wooster sophomore Katie Shideler (Gibsonia, Pa./North Allegheny) finished the game with 10 saves, while Kenyon freshman Suzy Deems (Grand Rapids, Mich./East Grand Rapids) made one save.
The Big Red have advanced to the championship game for the second-consecutive season thanks to goals from junior Charlotte Happel (Louisville, Ky./Louisville Collegiate), sophomore Michelle Kabaira (Harare, Zimbabwe/Arundel School) and sophomore Charlotte Godfrey (Denver, Colo./Cherry Creek). The game was scoreless through 32 minutes until Happel netted an unassisted goal at 32:02. Kabaira then added an insurance goal in the second half at 42:33, while Godfrey ended the scoring at 48:37 off of a rebounded save. Denison finished the match with a 26-5 advantage in shots and a 10-4 edge in penalty corner opportunities. Wittenberg senior Allie Purvis (Leesburg, Va./Loudon County) finished the game with eight saves, while sophomore Teya Adams (Rochester, N.H./Berwick Academy) stopped both shots that the Tigers put on goal.
Denison (14-0) captured its 11th North Coast Athletic Conference field hockey title after finishing the regular season with a perfect mark against conference opponents. Wittenberg is second all-time with 10 league titles, while Ohio Wesleyan and Wooster have each claimed eight, followed by DePauw and Kenyon (4), and Oberlin (3).
Wooster (10-4) finished second in the regular season standings, followed by Kenyon (8-6), Wittenberg (7-7), Ohio Wesleyan (7-7), DePauw (6-8), Earlham (4-10) and Oberlin (0-14).
Following the completion of the regular season schedule on Saturday, October 27, the seeds and pairings are now set for the 2018 NCAC Field Hockey Tournament.
The Big Red enter the 2018 NCAC Tournament as the top seed and will host fourth-seeded Wittenberg in the semifinals on Wednesday, Oct. 31 at 3:00 p.m. in Granville. Denison topped the Tigers, 1-0 in Springfield and 2-1 at home. In the other semifinal game on Wednesday, second-seeded Wooster will host third-seeded Kenyon at 3:00 p.m. The Fighting Scots won both regular season meetings against the Ladies, winning 3-2 at home and 2-1 in Gambier.
The championship match is set for Saturday, November 3, at the site of the highest remaining seed to emerge from the semifinal round.
TOURNEY NOTES: The tournament winner receives the NCAC's automatic bid into the NCAA tournament ... Denison, looking for its third title in program history, is appearing in the tournament for the tenth-consecutive season and 14th time overall ... Wooster returns to the tournament for the first time since 2013 after making 12-consecutive appearances and will be looking for its fourth title ... Kenyon is making its sixth-straight appearance and is looking for its fourth tournament title ... Wittenberg is making its fifth-straight and 15th overall appearance in the tournament and is tied with a league-high three tournament titles ... Kenyon leads all programs with four tournament titles followed by DePauw, Wooster and Wittenberg all with three, while Denison captured two and Oberlin claimed one NCAC title ... Denison made its way through the tournament bracket a year ago by knocking off #4 DePauw, 3-0, in the semifinals and #3 Wittenberg, 2-1, in the championship final.