Lexington, Ky. – The Transylvania men's lacrosse team continued its status as a conference dynasty with a 14-8 win against the Hanover College Panthers in the 2019 Heartland Collegiate Lacrosse Conference Tournament Championship match on Saturday afternoon at Pat Deacon Stadium.
The Pioneers won their fifth straight conference tournament championship on Saturday to clinch their third straight conference automatic qualifying berth into next week's NCAA Division III Men's Lacrosse Tournament.
Transylvania pulled away in the third quarter against Hanover, stretching a three-goal halftime lead into an 11-6 advantage after three quarters to solidify a dominant run through the HCLC, combining an 8-0 regular-season conference record with a pair of wins in this week's HCLC conference tournament.
The Pioneers will enter the NCAA Tournament with an overall record of 14-4, setting a program record for the most wins in a season by a Transylvania men's lacrosse team. Hanover's season draws to a close with an overall record of 12-6.
Two veterans keyed the offensive thrust for the Pioneers as Trenton Sneed and Corbyn Buchart each registered four goals apiece with Sneed tallying eight points in all. Buchart reached a hat-trick midway through the third quarter while Sneed scored three of his four goals in the pivotal third.
Hanover began the afternoon intent on playing the role of spoiler as the Panthers broke open a scoreless game with the first goal of the day at the 8:55 mark. Buchart and Sneed established their role for the day with a corresponding connection to tie up the game with 6:26 remaining in the first. Hanover kicked back with another goal two minutes later, but the Pioneers scored back-to-back goals in the final 1:20 of the first quarter to take momentum to the following period.
The Pioneers continued a run of three straight scores as Buchart found the back of the net less than one minute into the second. Though Hanover scored again with 8:54 to go before the half, Kayd Aquino and Nic Bailey each took setups from Sneed to score, bringing the Pioneers to the halftime break with a 6-3 lead.
Transylvania showed off its offensive firepower in the third quarter, outscoring Hanover 5 to 3 to carry an 11-6 lead into the final 15 minutes of play. Sneed provided two assists to start the quarter, feeding Sheymus Maloney and Jacob Miller for finishing blows as the Pioneers took their largest lead of the day at 13-6 with 10:12 remaining. Though Hanover scored twice down the stretch, the Pioneers held control of possession and ground the game towards its final moments briskly.
The Pioneers outgained Hanover 37 to 19 on ground balls as Peyton Bray and Webb VanMeter each claimed seven for Transylvania. Michael Webb picked up the win in goal as he padded his record to 13-3. Transylvania won 16 of 25 face-offs on the day to help augment their advantage in the possession game.
For the third straight season, the Pioneers will venture into the NCAA Tournament next week; Transylvania will find out its opponent tomorrow, Sunday, May 5 at 9:00 p.m. when the NCAA reveals the bracket during the NCAA Division III Tournament selection show, streamed live online at NCAA.com.
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