- By David Jablonski Staff Writer
The Wittenberg Tigers finally hit a wall in the D3Hoops.com poll — not because they lost, of course.
Wittenberg’s winning streak streak reached 19 games Saturday with an 84-61 victory over Denison at Pam Evans Smith Arena. At 12-0 in the North Coast Athletic Conference, the Tigers own a three-game lead over Wooster (15-4, 9-3) and Ohio Wesleyan (14-5, 9-3) with six games to play.
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In the new poll released Monday night, Wittenberg stayed at No. 3. It’s the first time its ranking hasn’t changed since it entered the poll. The Tigers climbed from No. 17 to No. 10 to No. 5 to No. 3 last week. That’s probably where it will remain as long as No. 1 Whitman College (19-0) and No. 2 Washington University (16-2) keep winning.
Whitman, located in Walla Walla, Wash., finished 31-1 last season, losing only in the Final Four. It became the first team from the west coast to play in the Final Four since 1982. It has remained No. 1 all season.
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Even though 2,222 miles separate Whitman and Wittenberg, they have one common opponent. Whitman beat Ohio Wesleyan 92-90 on Dec. 30 in Las Vegas, Nev. The Tigers beat Ohio Wesleyan 93-72 on Jan. 17 in Springfield. The teams play again Feb. 14 in Delaware.
Washington has two common opponents with Wittenberg. The Bears beat Wabash 82-70 in their season opener Nov. 17. Wittenberg won 72-58 at Wabash on Dec. 10 and plays the Little Giants again on Feb. 7 in Springfield. Washingon lost 94-76 to Mount St. Joseph, a team Wittenberg beat 78-74 in the season opener.
Wittenberg plays its third straight home game Wednesday, hosting Kenyon (6-13, 3-9) at at 7:30 p.m.