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Ohio Wesleyan Wins NCAC Lacrosse Tournament Title

Ohio Wesleyan Wins NCAC Lacrosse Tournament Title

Ohio Wesleyan (16-0) captured its second NCAC Tournament title in three years and improved to 16-0 on the year with a 9-8 overtime victory over Denison (13-4) in the championship game on Saturday afternoon in Delaware, Ohio. Battling Bishop freshman Luke Leyden (Northfield, MA/Northfield Mt. Hermon) scored the game-winning goal with 33 seconds left in overtime to secure the NCAC's automatic bid into the NCAA Div. III Men's Lacrosse Tournament.

Leyden, who added an assist for two total points on the game, intercepted a Denison clearing pass and broke in on the Big Red keeper and found the back of the net to give the Bishops the win.

Denison forced overtime when James Meager (Columbus, OH/Worthington Kilbourne) found the back of the net with just 32 seconds remaining in regulation off a pass from Blair Farinholt (Richmond, VA/ St Christopher's School) in a man-up situation after a Bishop penalty. Farinholt led Denison offensively, finishing the game with three goals and three assists for a game-high six points. Denison outshot Ohio Wesleyan, 36-29, and won 13-of-21 faceoff attempts.

Denison junior Clark Bullington (Houston, TX/Strake Jesuit College Prep) corralled seven saves in net for the Big Red, while Ryan McMahon (Springfield, VA/The Bullis School) racked up 10 saves for Ohio Wesleyan.

Ohio Wesleyan senior Kyle Foster (Medfield, MA/Avon Old Farms (CT)) finished with two goals and an assist to lead the Bishops with three points, while midfielder Brendan Bouchard (Cold Spring Harbor, NY/Cold Spring Harbor) picked up a pair of points on two goals. 

Semifinals: Wednesday, April 22 Championship: Saturday, April 25
#1 Ohio Wesleyan 15, #4 Kenyon 3 {Box Score}
Ohio Wesleyan 9, Denison 8 - OT {Box Score}
#2 Denison 19, #3 Wittenberg 5 {Box Score}
Championship Photos 
Tickets -- Directions -- Tournament Stats
Ohio Wesleyan (8-0, 14-0) earned its league-leading 19th North Coast championship and its first since 2011 after posting a pair of wins last week against DePauw, 19-5, and Wooster, 13-6. Denison is second all-time with 15 conference championships, while Wittenberg has two and Kenyon and Wooster each boast one league title.

The Battling Bishops will enter the NCAC Tournament as the top seed and will host fourth-seeded Kenyon (5-3, 9-6) on Wednesday evening at 7:00 p.m. In their first meeting this season, the Bishops knocked off the Lords by a narrow 10-7 margin on March 21st in Gambier. Second-seeded Denison (7-1, 12-3) will host third-seeded Wittenberg (6-2, 9-5) in the other semifinal match on Wednesday night at 8:00 p.m. in Granville. This will be the second matchup this season in Granville between the two squads, following a 13-6 victory for Denison on March 28th. The tournament championship game is set for Saturday at the site of the highest remaining seed to emerge from the semifinal round.

Semifinal Recaps:

Kenyon's Robert Jacobs (Palm Beach Gardens, FL/The Benjamin School) gave the Lords a 1-0 lead just 4:47 into Wednesday's NCAC semifinal contest, but top-seeded Ohio Wesleyan (15-0) scored nine unanswered goals en route to a 15-3 victory. The Bishops, who scored six goals in the second period, got a pair of goals from both Tommy Minkler (Oakton, VA/Landon School) and John Umbach (Montclair, NJ/Montclair) in the first half to take a 9-1 advantage into the break. Kenyon registered the first tally of the second half, but the Bishops outscored the Lords, 6-2, through the final two quarters for the win. Ohio Wesleyan outshot Kenyon, 53-30, and won 17-of-22 faceoffs. KC junior Patrick Shevelson (Pleasanton, CA/Foothill)racked up 16 saves in net for the Lords, while Ryan McMahon (Springfield, VA/The Bullis School) combined with Ben Rigger (Decatur, GA/Decatur) to make 13 saves for Ohio Wesleyan. Jacobs led the Lords with two points on a goal and an assist in the loss. Umbach led all players in the game by registering six points on three goals and three assists.

Denison (13-3) scored the first five goals of the game and never looked back from that point on en route to posting a 19-5 victory over Wittenberg (9-6) in the semifinal round of the 2015 NCAC Men's Lacrosse Tournament on Wednesday night in Granville. DU sophomore attack Liam Rooney (Redding, CT/Joel Barlow), last week's NCAC Player of the Week selection, scored four of his game-high five goals in the first half and finished the game with eight total points after also handing out three assists, while junior goalie Clark Bullington (Houston, TX/Strake Jesuit College Prep) made six saves and allowed just two goals in 45 minutes of action in the cage for the Big Red.  Five different Tigers found the back of the net in the season finale, led by sophomore midfielderZach Shy (Columbus, OH/Upper Arlington) who finished the game with one goal and one assist.