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Denison Headed to Third-Straight NCAA Tournament

Denison Headed to Third-Straight NCAA Tournament

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The Denison University women’s lacrosse team (13-5) earned its 10th NCAC title after defeating Wittenberg (13-4), 14-10, on Sunday, May 8th, in the 2016 NCAC Women’s Lacrosse Tournament championship game in Granville, Ohio.

With the victory, the Big Red have earned the NCAC’s automatic bid into the 2016 NCAA Div. III Tournament and will travel to play Mary Washington (14-4) on Sunday, May 15th in a second-round matchup. This is Denison’s 18th NCAA Tournament appearance and the program’s fifth berth in the last six years. The winner of the Denison/Mary Washington contest will take on the winner of Trinity (17-1) versus the first round match-up winner of Ithaca (13-5) and Regis (12-6) in the third-round on Saturday, May 21 at a site to be determined.

Denison defeated Wooster (11-6), 19-9, on Wednesday to advance to the championship game. The Big Red leaned on senior Lizzy Pellicane’s (Short Hills, NJ/Morristown-Beard) five goals and one assist to advance to the finals. In the championship game, Wittenberg jumped out to a 7-4 lead in the first half, capped by a goal from Olivia Lash (Cleveland Heights, OH/Cleveland Heights) with 14:21 left in the first. However, the Big Red scored five-straight goals to take a 9-7 lead into the half when freshman Colleen Muldoon (Ardsley, NY/Ardsley) scored an unassisted tally with 2:50 left in the first.

Wittenberg scored three of the first five goals in the second frame, but Denison scored three-straight markers to end the game, beginning with a goal from Leah Israel (Bloomfield Hills, MI/Cranbrook Kingswood) off an assist from Annie McMahon (Marblehead, MA/Governor’s Academy) for the four-point win.

Defensively, Denison successfully cleared 16 of their 19 opportunities, while Wittenberg was 13-for-19 in clear attempts. DU also held a 31-16 edge in ground balls. In the goal, DU sophomore goalie Becca Jones (Wolfeboro, NH/Brewster Acad.) made eight saves on 18 shot attempts, while Wittenberg’s Katie Reuter (Cleveland, OH/Hathaway Brown) faced 36 shots and made 17 saves for the Tigers.

Lash finished the game with a game-high six goals and one assist to lead Wittenberg with seven total points. Pellicane led Denison with three goals and one assist for four total points for the Big Red. DU was represented on the all-tournament team by Grace Gavula (Glenview, IL/Loyola Academy), Carol Allen (Nashville, TN/Ensworth), Jane Goodspeed (East Grand Rapids, MI/East Grand Rapids) and Pellicane. 

Wittenberg defeated third-seeded Allegheny (9-9), 14-10, in the semifinals to advance to its second NCAC Tournament Championship in the last three years. The Tigers were represented on the all-tournament team by Lash, Reuter, Carrie Kubasta (Medina, OH/Medina) and Gretchen Burkey (Wooster, OH/Wooster).

Allegheny was represented on the all-tournament team by Jackie Marrow (Ann Arbor, MI/Skyline) and Jessie Thiessen (Pittsburgh, PA/Fox Chapel High School), while Wooster was represented by Heather Honn (Eden Prairie, MN/Eden Prairie) and Isabel Perman (St. Louis, MO/Webster Groves).