Denison (17-0) captured its first NCAC Tournament title and improved to 17-0 overall on the year with a 14-5 victory over arch-rival Ohio Wesleyan (12-4) in the championship game on Saturday afternoon in Granville, Ohio. The Big Red used a balanced scoring attack in the contest with six different players finding the back of the net, led by a five-goal, one-assist performance from freshman Luke Walsh (Buffalo, NY/Deerfield Acad.). With the victory, DU has secured the NCAC's automatic bid into the NCAA Div. III Men's Lacrosse Tournament.
The first eight minutes of the contest were tightly contested on both ends of the field with neither team tallying a goal, but Big Red senior Eddie Vita (Coronado, CA/Coronado) broke the scoring draught with 7:10 on the first half clock on an unassisted goal. Vita shook the back of the net again with 4:20 left in the first quarter to put DU up 3-0, while Ohio Wesleyan junior John Umbach (Montclair, NJ/Montclair) put OWU on the board on an unassisted goal in the final second of the first stanza. Vita put DU ahead, 4-1, with another unassisted goal in the opening minutes of the second quarter, and the Big Red added two late quarter goals to build a 6-2 lead at halftime.
Walsh went to work in the second half as he scored three goals in the third and one more in the fourth to help Denison secure the nine-goal victory. Denison sophomore Eric Baumgardner (Washington, D.C./Gonzaga College) led the Big Red with six groundballs and was also 13-of-22 on face-off attempts, while sophomore Clark Bullington (Houston, TX/Strake Jesuit Prep) made 13 saves in goal. Umbach and junior Tommy Minkler (Oakton, VA/Landon School) both finished the game with two goals for OWU, while junior Sam Gioseffi (Harrison, NY/Harrison) scooped up seven groundballs and was 9-of-21 on face-offs. In goal, junior Ryan McMahon (Springfield, VA/The Bullis School) corralled 11 saves in 60 minutes between the pipes for the Bishops.
The 2014 NCAC Men's Lacrosse All-Tournament Team will be announced following the spring coaches meeting on Sunday, April 27th.