Top seeded Denison rolled to an 18-3 victory over fourth-seeded Wittenberg in the semifinals of the 2014 North Coast Athletic Conference Tournament. The win sends DU to the NCAC Tournament Championship where they will have a rematch with rival Ohio Wesleyan on Saturday (April 26) at 3 p.m. in Granville. The victory also sets a new school record for victories in a season with 16.
Denison was sharp from the onset. When the two teams met on April 12 in Springfield, Denison won 22-of-26 faceoff attempts and outscored the Tigers 14-8. Tonight it was more of the same at the faceoff X as the Big Red went 22-for-24 led by sophomore Eric Baumgardner who was 17-for-19. He also posted a game-high 12 ground balls.
DU outshot Wittenberg 60-16 as Tiger goalie Jay Dolan was busy, posting 21 saves while facing 29 shots on cage. As usual, Denison's goals were evenly distributed as 12 different players got in the act. Blair Farinholt led the way with three goals on four shot attempts. Eddie Vita posted one goal and three assists, while Teddy Powell, Luke Walsh, Benjie Colberg, and Nick Caravana all scored twice for the Big Red.
Junior defenseman Drew Newman posted four ground balls and led the team with two caused turnovers. Wittenberg was flagged for nine penalties resulting in 7:30 of penalty time for Denison. The Big Red finished with three extra-man goals while the Tigers were 1-for-2 in man-up.
Clark Bullington made his second-straight start in goal for Denison. He posted four saves while allowing all three Tiger goals in 45 minutes of action. Chris Thomas played the fourth quarter and made one save.
At 16-0, this marks the best season based on won-loss record, in the 62-year history of the program. One week ago, Denison edged Ohio Wesleyan 10-9 in their lone regular season meeting. Saturday's NCAC Championship game between the two schools will be the 93rd meeting in the all-time series.