Lexington, KY. – Sophomore Julia Ward had three goals on opening day for the Transylvania women's lacrosse team but an offensive rush by the Capital Crusaders dealt the Pioneers a 15-5 nonconference loss at Pat Deacon Stadium on Saturday.
After going 7-9 in 2014-15, the Pioneers began their season with the opening goal of the day on a searing shot from senior Rachel Harrison to take a 1-0 lead. Capital responded less than two minutes later on an equalizer from Capital's Kara Hines. The Crusaders went up 2-1 on Transylvania before Ward struck five minutes into the contest to tie the game, this time at two apiece.
The Crusaders then shifted their offense into high gear, scoring five unanswered goals for a 7-2 advantage 20 minutes in. Ward's second goal of the afternoon was a career moment for freshman Lindsey Jenkins, who collected the first assist of her collegiate career on the attack. Jenkins's setup to Ward pulled the Pioneers back within four goals with eight minutes to go in the half.
Both sides traded one goal apiece prior to the half with freshman defender Emma Oliver handling the scoring duties for Transy as the Crusaders took an encouraging 8-4 lead to the locker room.
The second half belonged to the visiting Crusaders, who outscored Transylvania 7-1 in the final 30 minutes of gameplay. Kim Hoerauef and Victoria Husain teamed up to score four of Capital's second half goals as the Crusaders scored the first six goals out of the gate. Ward answered with the lone goal of Transylvania's second half with a minute and a half to go in the match to register a hat-trick in her team's season debut.
Ward led Transylvania on the day with an efficient attack on net, scoring goals on 50 percent of her shots on goal. Ward also secured seven draw controls to aid Transylvania's battle of possession.
Senior goalkeeper Lydia Shaugnessy notched 10 saves for the day in her season debut for the Pioneers.
Capital began their season with a win and a 1-0 boost in the standings, while Transylvania falls to 0-1 after their first action in 2016.
The Pioneers will aim to rebound as they take the field next Saturday at Pat Deacon Stadium for a breakfast match against the Calvin Knights at 10:00 a.m.