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Denison takes down Owls with dominant second half to win eighth straight NCAC Tournament title

GRANVILLE, Ohio (May 5, 2024) – The top-seeded Denison University men’s lacrosse team outscored third-seeded Kenyon College 7-2 in the second half to capture the 2024 North Coast Athletic Conference Tournament Championship by a final score of 15-11. It was the fourth straight season, including the pandemic-shortened 2021 campaign, that Kenyon traveled to Denison to take on the Big Red in the NCAC Tournament championship game.

Both teams entered the day 13-5 overall, but Denison, which is ranked just outside the United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association’s Top-20 NCAA Division III Coaches’ Poll, won its 10th straight game and now receives the conference’s automatic qualifier to the NCAA Division III Tournament.

The first two goals of the game went to Kenyon, which also led 5-2 with 4:27 left in the first quarter and led 9-8 at halftime after a goal with just 14 seconds left by Rollins Heath, who was Kenyon’s hero on Thursday after scoring the game-winning goal with just 10 seconds left in a 13-12 win at second-seeded Ohio Wesleyan University.

Down by two (10-8) after a goal by Kenyon with 11:29 left in the third quarter, the Big Red flipped a switch and scored four straight goals in the final 10 minutes of the third quarter to take a two-goal lead themselves (12-10) heading into the final period.

The game-tying goal and go ahead go-goal during Denison’s 4-0 run both came from Nick Vance before the final tally of the third quarter came thanks to a man-up goal by Luke Fisher.

After the Owls got to within one (12-11) with 7:51 left to play, Denison quickly responded as Colin MacLean won the ensuing faceoff and assisted on a goal by Tommy Quinson just 16 seconds later.

Then with 5:35 left, Fisher got the assist on a man-up goal by Quinson to make it 14-11 before scoring the final goal of the game himself in emphatic fashion with just 4:14 remaining.

Denison outshot Kenyon 11-7 in the fourth quarter but finished just one shot ahead of the Owls (42-41) for the game.

Faceoffs were 16-14 in favor of Kenyon, groundballs were 38-36 in favor of Denison, and Denison also finished with just one less turnover than the Owls.

One big statistical difference, however, was the Big Red going 3-for-4 on man-up opportunities compared to just 1-for-3 for the Owls.

Fisher (4 goals; 3 assists) led with a game-high seven points while Quinson and Vance both scored three goals and added one assist.

MacLean was 50 percent (8-16) on the faceoff while Charlie Pellegrino matched him with a team-high four groundballs.

Owen O’Neill and Charlie Haight both finished with two caused turnovers while Andrew Albert finished with 11 saves and 11 goals allowed.

Fisher was named the NCAC Tournament MVP after totaling 12 points (6 goals, 6 assists) during Denison’s two games in the tournament. He was joined on the all-tournament team by Quinson (6 goals, 3 assists), Vance (6 goals, 1 assist), MacLean (16-28 FO, 6 GB) and Albert (2-0, 15 GA, 21 SV, 58.3 SV%, 7.50 GGA).

Denison will now advance to the NCAA Tournament for the 28th time in program history. The NCAA will announce the 2024 NCAA Division III Championship field tonight (May 5) at 10 p.m. with a live selection show airing on The NCAA Tournament opens with the first round on Wednesday, May 8, followed by the next two rounds on Saturday, May 11, and Sunday, May 12.

For more information on the 2024 NCAA DIII men’s lacrosse tournament selections and tournament dates, please click HERE.


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