On Wednesday February 17th, Denison women’s basketball secured its fourth North Coast Athletic Conference regular season title since 2011 with a 63-46 victory over Hiram at Livingston Gymnasium in Granville.
This victory marked the fourteenth game winning streak for the Big Red. Denison started off strong scoring 20 of the game’s first 27 points. They did not lose their momentum the second half either. The Big Red started the second period with a 17-4 run, giving them a 37-13 lead going into halftime.
The Hiram Terriers tried to bounce back in the second half, cutting the deficit to 14 by the fourth quarter. However, the Big Red held on to the lead and secured their victory with a 14-point lead.
Jordan Holmes ‘17 led the Big Red with 25 points and shot 10 for 10 from the field. This statistic alone raised her nationally ranked conversion rate to 69.9 percent – third for Division III. Other notable performances came from Kellie Arter ’16 with 11 points, as well as Emily Krumpe ’17 who finished the game with 8 points.
The victory propelled the Big Red to a record of 21-3 overall and 14-1 in the NCAC. Denison travelled to Meadville, Pennsylvania to battle Allegheny for their last game of the regular season.
The Big Red carried their momentum from their victory over Hiram to defeat Allegheny 55-52.
Holmes once again had a standout performance, setting the NCAC rebound record with 1,219 in her career. The previous record-holder, Ohio Wesleyan’s Jill Myers set her record throughout 101 games and four seasons, while it has only taken Holmes ’17 less than three seasons and only 79 games.
The game was a close-fought battle. Allegheny held the lead for the first quarter and a half, until a 7-2 run by the Big Red game them their first lead of the game. Allegheny bounced back with a 3-pointer from Jessica Mrdjenovich and at halftime, the Gators led 30-28.
In the third quarter the lead went back and forth between the teams. With the game tied 50-50, Gabrielle Nottage ’17 hit two jump shots to establish a two-possession lead for the Big Red. In the end, the Gators missed a 3-point opportunity to tie the game, securing another victory for Denison.
Going into the conference tournament, Niyah Gonzalez ’16 says “We don’t want to put too much pressure on ourselves. All season we have just been taking one game at a time and that’s what we are going to continue to do going into the conference tournament.”
Denison now stands at 22-3 overall and 15-1 in the NCAC. They will enter the North Coast Athletic Conference Tournament as the top-seed. They will host number eight seed Ohio Wesleyan on Tuesday February 23rd at Livingston Gymnasium.