The DePauw Tigers, three-time defending conference champions, completed NCAC play with a perfect 16-0 record and secured the top-seed in the 2015 NCAC Tournament after defeating Ohio Wesleyan, 74-69, on Saturday. 2014-15 marked the third time in four years that DePauw has posted a perfect conference record. The Tigers’ 23-1 record marks the sixth-straight year DePauw has won at least 23 games in a season and the 14th-straight season with at least 22 wins. Wittenberg leads all league teams with 12 NCAC championships, sharing the crown with Ohio Wesleyan in 1999 and ‘92. Allegheny is next with six titles, including five-straight from 1985-89. The Gators shared the NCAC’s first championship in 1985 with Wooster. Additionally, Allegheny and Ohio Wesleyan tied for first in 2001. The Battling Bishops own five overall titles, while Kenyon and Denison each boast three and Wooster two.
DePauw (16-0, 23-1) will be the top seed in the 31st annual NCAC Women’s Basketball Tournament. Tournament play begins with quarterfinal games at campus sites on Tuesday. Tournament seeding follows the final regular-season standings with the top four seeds hosting the quarterfinals. The Tigers host No. 8 seed Hiram (3-13, 7-18) and second seed Wittenberg (12-4, 20-6) hosts seventh seed Kenyon (5-11, 7-17) at 7:30 p.m. Third-seeded Denison (10-6, 14-11) hosts sixth-seeded Allegheny (7-9, 14-11) at 7:30 p.m. and fourth-seeded Oberlin (10-6, 14-11) hosts fifth-seeded Ohio Wesleyan (9-7, 13-12) with tip set for 7:00 p.m. Tuesday’s winners will advance to the semifinals and championship on Friday and Saturday at the site of the highest remaining seed after the quarterfinals. Semifinal games will be held at 6:00 and 8:00 p.m. with the high seed playing in the later time slot. The championship game is set for 4:00 p.m. This year’s champion will again receive an automatic bid to the NCAA Division III Tournament, which begins with first-round play on March 6th.
TOURNEY TALK: DePauw is the three-time defending NCAC tournament champion after defeating Denison, 69-41, in the 2014 tournament final. Denison (7), Wittenberg (7), Ohio Wesleyan (5) and Allegheny (5) have combined to win 24 of 30 women’s tournament titles. DePauw (3), Kenyon (2) and Wooster (1) account for the six other tournament titles. Wittenberg leads all conference teams with 14 appearances in the championship game, while Ohio Wesleyan is close behind with 13. Last year Denison became the third team to reach the finals ten times, while Allegheny has made a finals trip nine times. Kenyon has six title game appearances, while Wooster has four. Oberlin, this year’s fourth seed, will host a tournament game for the first time since 1990 as the Yeowomen look to make a run to the championship game for the first-time in program history. Hiram returns to the NCAC tournament as the eighth seed and will be looking to advance past the quarterfinal round for the first time in school history. DePauw, entering its fourth NCAC Tournament, carries a perfect 9-0 record in tournament action, while Wittenberg has been the most consistent team in tournament play with a .700 winning percentage (42-18). Ohio Wesleyan has gone 42-25 in the tournament (.627), followed by Denison at 33-22 (.600) and Allegheny at 28-25 (.528). Kenyon (30-29, .508) is the next closest team.