It was quite the year for the Big Red on the court, on the field, and in the pool. Here’s a quick look at just a few of the teams and players who brought home the brass and the accolades. For more information on all of our men’s and women’s sports—and to keep track of their season in real time—visit DenisonBigRed.com.
1 - Swimming & Diving Denison’s men’s swimming and diving team posted its ninth runner-up finish at the NCAA Division III Championship after logging three event national championships, 22 top-eight finishes, and 38 All-American performances. Senior Al Weik ’14 became the first male in NCAA Division III history to win the 1,650- yard freestyle for four consecutive years. Weik also won the 500-yard freestyle for the third consecutive year, and junior Connor Dignan placed first, setting a new meet record with 613.90 points in the 3-meter board. Denison’s women placed fourth at the NCAA Division III Championship, marking the program’s eighth straight top-five national finish. Senior Natalie Lugg ’14 won the national championship in the 100-yard breaststroke. Both men’s and women’s swimming teams also recorded their sixth consecutive North Coast Athletic Conference Championship title while hosting the meet for the first time at the Trumbull Aquatics Center.
2 - Football Under fourth-year head coach Jack Hatem, the Denison football team enjoyed its best season since 1986, posting a 7-3 record. Highlighted by a 47-41 double overtime win over Ohio Wesleyan in September, the Big Red would land seven all-conference players. Junior quarterback Brandon Sklenar ’15 passed for 2,274 yards and 17 touchdowns while rushing for 621 yards and eight touchdowns. Sklenar ranked among the national leaders in completion percentage and passing efficiency.
3 - Track & Field Denison was well represented at the 2014 NCAA Division III Outdoor Track & Field Championships hosted by Ohio Wesleyan in nearby Delaware, Ohio, as four athletes qualified and three would go on to earn All-America honors. Senior Tiffany Davis ’14 logged her second straight All-American finish in the 200 meters, and sophomore Aedin Brennan ’16 became an All-American for the third time after placing seventh in the heptathlon. Denison’s final outdoor All-American showing came from senior Olivia Galano ’14, who shocked the field by placing sixth in the 10,000 meters despite being seeded 17th out of 22 runners entering the championship. Galano qualified for the NCAA Division III Championship in cross-country, indoor track and field, and outdoor track and field in 2013-14.
4 - Women’s Lacrosse Under first-year head coach Amanda Daniels, Denison women’s lacrosse won eight of its last nine contests to capture the NCAC Tournament Championship and qualify for the NCAA Tournament for the 16th time in program history. Junior Molly Chapman became the fourth player in conference history to score 100 goals and tally 100 assists in her career.
5 - We would be remiss to let the athletics program as a whole go unrecognized. This past year, Denison athletics won its 14th NCAC All- Sports Championship and placed 46th in the Division III Learfield Sports Directors’ Cup, presented by the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics and USA Today. This marks a 56-spot improvement over Denison’s 2012-13 placement.