Lexington, Ky. – The five-time reigning conference tournament champion Transylvania men's lacrosse team will begin defense of its title on Wednesday, May 1 in the semifinals of the Heartland Collegiate Lacrosse Conference Tournament against the Mount St. Joseph University Lions at 4:00 p.m. at Pat Deacon Stadium.
The Pioneers reclaimed the HCLC regular season title for the second time in three years last weekend after defeating the Hanover College Panthers 13-11 to complete an undefeated 8-0 run through conference play, earning the No. 1 seed and homefield advantage in this week's four-team conference tournament.
Transylvania will face No. 4 seed Mount St. Joseph for the third time in the 2019 campaign on Wednesday for the right to advance to Saturday's HCLC Conference Tournament Championship. The winner between Transylvania and Mount St. Joseph will take on the winner of the other Wednesday semifinal featuring No. 2 seed Hanover and No. 3 seed Earlham.
The Pioneers are aiming for what would be their fifth straight conference tournament championship and their third consecutive conference tournament championship since the NCAA began awarding an automatic qualifying berth to the conference's tournament winner in 2017.
Transylvania carries a 12-4 overall record and a 7-1 home record into Wednesday's conference tournament proceedings with Mount St. Joseph. The Pioneers put together one of the most dominant runs in recent memory during conference play, outscoring opponents during HCLC contests by an average score of 24 to 3. In two meetings with Mount St. Joseph this year, the Pioneers have outscored the Lions 60 to 2.
Thanks in part to their magnificent run in conference play, the Pioneers rank in the top-10 nationally in a multitude of categories, including seventh in scoring with 17.6 goals per game and sixth in defense, holding opponents to 6.6 goals per contest.
The Pioneers also lead the nation in scoring margin, outscoring opponents by 11 goals a game and ranking fourth in ground balls with 47.8 claims per game. Sophomore goalie Michael Webb is one of the nation's leader in goals-against average, yielding just 7.5 per match.
The Pioneers are led on offense by freshman attack Bryce Lowe, who ranks third in the HCLC in goals with 36 this year, and junior attack Trenton Sneed, who stands second in the conference in assists with 31. Sneed ranks third in the HCLC in points while senior teammate, attack Nic Bailey ranks fourth with 49 points this year.
Mount St. Joseph is led by attack Kevin McClanahan, who is fourth in the HCLC with 32 goals.
Tickets for Wednesday's semifinal and Saturday's championship game pending a Transylvania win are $8 for adults, $5 for students for seniors, and free for children ages 11 and under. Staff, faculty, and students who are part of an HCLC institution will be admitted for free with the provision of a university ID.
Wednesday's semifinal will be broadcast live on the Transy Sports Network while live stats are also available during gameplay at TransySports.com.
For more on Transylvania men's lacrosse, follow @TransyMLax on Twitter