2019 HCLC Women’s Lacrosse Conference Tournament Preview: Pioneers begin title defense Wednesday vs. Mount St. Joseph

women's lacrosse

Lexington, Ky. – The Transylvania women's lacrosse team will open up the 2019 Heartland Collegiate Lacrosse Tournament at home against the Mount St. Joseph University Lions in a tournament semifinal match on Wednesday, May 1 at 7:00 p.m. at Pat Deacon Stadium.

For the second straight year, the Pioneers won the conference regular-season, going a perfect 6-0 in HCLC play to add to their overall record of 13-4.

As the No. 1 seed and defending champions in this year's tournament, the Pioneers will host the No. 4 seed, Mount St. Joseph on Wednesday in the tournament semifinal. The winner of Saturday's match moves on to play the winner of No. 2 seed Earlham and No.3 seed Hanover in Saturday's HCLC Championship match. Transylvania possesses homefield advantage throughout the HCLC Tournament and would host the winner of the semifinals in Lexington on Saturday.

The winner of the HCLC Tournament will be crowned the conference tournament champion and awarded the conference's automatic berth into the NCAA Tournament. The conference was given an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament to the first time ever in 2018.

Transylvania advanced to the NCAA Tournament for the first time in program history last season after defeating former conference member Washington and Jefferson in the 2018 ORLC Championship game in Lexington. The Pioneers are bidding for a repeat as they seek to win two tournament games this week.

Wednesday's semifinal match marks the second meeting of the year between the Pioneers and Lions as well as an instant rematch. Transylvania hosted Mount St. Joseph this past Saturday on its senior day as the Pioneers cruised to a 22-2 victory.

The Pioneers have dominated their HCLC opposition in 2019, outscoring their opponents in conference play by an average of over 18 goals per game. Transylvania is led on offense by sophomore attack Courtney Pontious, who ranks second in the HCLC in total goals with 62. Junior midfielder Salem Carlow paces the HCLC in assists with 36 on the year.

Defensively, the Pioneers are guided by three-time HCLC Defensive Player of the Week Harper Zeitz and goalie Mackenzie Dent, who leads the conference in goals-against average, yielding fewer than 9 scores per game.

Tickets for Wednesday's semifinal games are $8 for adults, $5 for adults and senior citizens, and free to children ages 11 and under. Students, faculty, and staff of HCLC members who provide a university ID card are admitted for free. If the Pioneers advance to Saturday's championship match, same prices will apply to Saturday's contest.

Wednesday's match will be streamed live on the Transy Sports Network. Live Stats are also available during Wednesday's tournament action at TransySports.com.

For more on Transylvania women's lacrosse, follow @TransyWLax