HCAC Women's Soccer Conference Tournament Preview: Pioneers back for first time in three years

HCAC Women's soccer preview

Lexington, Ky. – For the first time since the 2015 season, the Transylvania women's soccer team is preparing to take part in the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference Tournament, which begins on Tuesday, October 30.

The Pioneers posted a record of 13-4-2 overall and 6-2-1 in the HCAC in a memorable 2018 campaign, earning themselves the No. 3 seed and a road matchup with the No. 2 seed Mount St. Joseph University Lions at Schueler Field on Tuesday at 8:00 p.m.

Transylvania is pursuing its first conference tournament championship since the 2012 season, along with the program's first NCAA Tournament berth since 2013.

The semifinal matchup between the Pioneers and the Lions marks a rematch of the teams' regular-season meeting on October 10. In that game, Mt. St. Joseph slipped past Transylvania in a thriller by the final score of 3-2 thanks to an 88th-minute goal from Paige Mersmann.

Entering Wednesday's match, Mt. St. Joseph boasts a record of 14-2-3 overall and 7-1-1 in the HCAC. The Lions' lone defeat over their past 12 matches was a 2-1 double-overtime loss at the hands of the HCAC regular-season champion Hanover College Panthers on October 24.

Transylvania is led offensively by the freshmen trio of midfielder Abby Baker, and strikers Ashley Chindo and Quinn May. Baker leads the team and ranks sixth in the HCAC in goals with six on the season to go with her three assists.

Chindo, a balanced offensive threat, leads Transylvania with five assists on the year and ranks second on the team in goals with seven, while May ranks third on the team with three goals and has also recorded two assists for a total of 14 points.

Transylvania has enjoyed exceptional keeper play by committee this season as senior Ally Barfield and freshman Morgan Patton  have split duties as the Pioneers' primary goalie. Barfield has allowed just one goal in 596 minutes of action this season while posting a conference-leading .969% save percentage. Patton has tallied 72 saves while logging 1,035 minutes in net and compiling a record of 6-3-2.

The Pioneers and Lions will face off on Wednesday for a trip to the HCAC Tournament Championship match to be held Saturday, November 4. The championship match will take place at the home of the highest seed remaining after the semifinal round.

For more on Transylvania women's soccer, follow @TransyWSoccer on Twitter