Division III Meet of the Week: Denison, Kenyon Set for NCAC Showdown


Two of the best Division III teams in the country year in and year our are Kenyon College and Denison University. They just so happen to be in the same conference, making this week’s North Coast Athletic Conference Championships an easy pick for the NCAA Division III Meet of the Week.

The NCAC has some other traditionally strong programs as well. The conference consists of Allegheny College, Denison University, DePauw University, Hiram College, Kenyon College, Oberlin College, Ohio Wesleyan University, Wabash College, Wittenberg University and the College of Wooster.

Many of these programs are in the state of Ohio, led by Denison and Kenyon. Entering the conference meet, Kenyon is ranked No. 1 in Division III by the College Swimming & Diving Coaches Association of America (CSCAA).

Last week’s Meet of the Week

Meanwhile, in the women’s poll, it is Denison earning the top ranking, while Kenyon is No. 3.

The Division III Meet of the Week begins Wednesday in Granville, Ohio, home of the Denison Big Red.

The Denison men’s team is the 11-time defending champions, while the Kenyon women’s team earned the top spot the last two seasons. The Big Red men are the only team to defeat the Kenyon men at the NCAC meet, claiming titles in 1997, and from 2009-2019.

The Denison women snapped the Ladies’ 19-year hold on the league crown in 2004, with KC regaining control of the title from 2005-08. DU then reeled off seven-straight championships from 2009-15, with the KC women regaining the crown in 2016 and the Big Red taking it back in 2017. The Ladies then took home the NCAC title in both 2018 and 2019. Overall, Kenyon has won 26 of the 35 NCAC titles contested in women’s competition and 23 total titles on the men’s side.

The first day will see Kenyon’s Connor Rumpit and Bryan Fitzgerald as the top two seeds in the 500 free, while Denison’s Tara Culibrk and Mia Chiappe have the top two seeds in the women’s event.

It is the first of many events that have those two schools at the top of the psych sheet.

Between the two schools, they have the top seed in all but one of the swimming events, and many events could see the bulk of the top eight final stacked with Denison and Kenyon swimmers.

That means there will be an ton of places for touch-outs to add up for either team, making it the Division III Meet of the Week.

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