Edited: Feb. 27, 2010
As NCAC tournament champions, Denison earns a berth in the NCAA Division III tournament. The NCAA will announce matchups on Monday.
Top-seeded Wittenberg advances to its league-record 14th tournament title game after outlasting fourth-seeded Kenyon, 60-54 in the semifinal round of play. The Tigers built a 19-12 advantage midway through the first period, but Kenyon battled back and the two teams ended the half knotted at 25-25. The Ladies went on a run of their own to start the second half, running out to a 38-29 lead at the 12:54 mark, before the Tigers came back to take the lead. In all, the game featured six lead changes and six tied scores. After Kenyon senior Laurel Stokes drained a three-pointer at the 2:20 mark, things were knotted 51-51. At that point, Wittenberg took control of the game. Katherine Hueter sank back-to-back layups, Elise Jenkins drained two free throws with 24 seconds left, and Sarah Watson connected on a last-second layup. Carrie Dyer led the Tigers with 16 points, six rebounds and four assists, while Hueter added 13 points and 10 boards. Stephanie Boardman contributed 12 points, eight rebounds and four assists. Stokes finished the game, as well as her Kenyon career, with a trio of three-pointers and 13 points. She also had three steals, giving her 159 for her career. That's the seventh-best total in program history. Morgan Korinek posted team-highs of 15 points and ten rebounds for her ninth double-double of the season. She sank 5-of-9 field goals and finished the campaign with a new Kenyon single-season record for shooting percentage. Her mark of .601 (161-of-268) easily surpassed the old mark of .577 (109-of-189) set by Karen Schell in the 1996-97 season. Kenyon finishes with a 17-10 record.
Denison advances to its seventh tourney championship game. The Big Red have a sterling 5-1 record in tournament finals, with their last championship coming in 2008. The Big Red won it all as the fourth seed that year, as a third seed in 2006 and as a second seed in 2005. They were the top-ranked team in 2007. Denison also won a title in 1994. Tonight, the Big Red avenged a string of NCAC tournament losses to Ohio Wesleyan with an 86-57 victory in the first semifinal contest. The Big Red had a 0-7 record against the Battling Bishops in the NCAC tournament and also had lost both meetings with OWU this winter. The night's victory was fueled by Christina Myers game-high 21 points, while Shaina Kaiser posted her fourth double-double of the season with 20 tallies and a career-high 12 rebounds. Ohio Wesleyan was paced by Shannon Delaney's 10 points, while Pam Quigney chipped in eight points and eight rebounds. Ohio Wesleyan finishes with a 20-7 record.
NCAC champion Wittenberg defeated eighth-seeded Hiram, 59-43, to advance as host of the tournament for the first time since 2006. The Tigers led 31-18 by halftime and surged to as much as a 25-point lead in the second half. Both teams struggled with poor shooting. The Tigers wound up at a 35.8 percent (24-67) and the Terriers finished at 25.8 percent (17-66), including 2-of-20 shooting from three-point range. Wittenberg senior Stephanie Boardman led all players with 15 points and 17 rebounds. Hiram, which fell to 4-22 overall, got 15 points and 11 rebounds from senior Ashley Drum.
Ohio Wesleyan, the second seed, came away with a victory in a tight game with seventh seed Oberlin, 67-56. The Yeowomen got within a single point with 11:53 to go to make the score 40-39 in favor of the Battling Bishops. After Oberlin missed a three-point attempt with 11:02 left, it went 6.5 minutes without scoring as OWU went on a 13-0 run to make it 53-39 with 5:39 remaining. The Yeowomen drew within to at 58-56 but the Battling Bishops were able to hold on. Junior Tyler Cordell finished with 21 points to lead OWU, including two free-throws with 0:00.1 left on the clock. Freshman Allison Anderson poured in 26 points, including 6-of-9 shooting from long range, to lead Oberlin (5-21).
Third-seeded Denison shot 50 percent from the field and converted 29 points off 19 turnovers to topple six seed Allegheny, 80-68. There were 10 lead changes early on until the Big Red went on a 14-6 run to close the opening half with a double-digit lead, 41-30. Denison opened up the second half in similar fashion, rushing out on a 16-4 run to open up a big lead that the Gators were unable to overcome. Denison freshman guard Serafina Nuzzo scored a game-high 18 points to lead five Big Red shooters in double figures. Heidi Goeller, a freshman forward for the Gators, also had 18 points to go with five rebounds and four steals. Allegheny ended the season with a 10-16 mark.
A last minute defensive stand made the difference, allowing fourth-seeded Kenyon to defeat five seed Wooster, 48-47. The Ladies had opened as much as an 11-point lead. However, the Fighting Scots, behind senior Kym Wenz, continued to chip away at the lead and drew to within one point with under a minute left in the game. Wooster freshman Jessica Wingen blocked a shot and gained possession with seven seconds left, but the Fighting Scots were unable to convert a pair of last second shots, including one that was blocked by the Ladies’ sophomore Morgan Korinek as the final buzzer sounded. Senior Laurel Stokes led Kenyon with 13 points, while Wenz paced the Fighting Scots with 17 points with three three-pointers. Wooster ends the year with an 11-15 record.