Pioneers women's lacrosse scores another 20 for 2-0 season start

Rachel Johnston and a scoreboard

Westerville, Ohio – The Transylvania women's lacrosse team completed a successful weekend trip to central Ohio by defeating the Otterbein University Cardinals 20 to 10 Sunday afternoon at Memorial Stadium.

Playing in its second game in as many days to begin the 2018 season, the Pioneers journeyed to Otterbein after disposing of fellow Ohio Athletic Conference peer Muskingum University by a 20-goal margin just a day before.

After enduring an early two-goal deficit, the Pioneers broke out another dose of supercharged offense to take an 11-7 lead to the halftime break and never looked back.

Senior attack Julia Ward settled down the Transylvania rhythm by scoring the Pioneers' first goal of the day nearly six minutes into the contest, halving Otterbein's advantage to 2-1. Ward's score ignited a string of seven consecutive goals for Transylvania as freshman midfielder Rachel Johnston scored the next two goals before handing the baton back to Ward, who finished up an early hat-trick in giving the Pioneers a 5-2 lead.

Four other Pioneers joined Ward and Johnston in the scoring mix later in the first half, as freshman attack Shelby Wuest added two goals, and freshman midfielder Salem Carlow, sophomore midfielder Brianna McCulley, and senior attack Kate Winkelmeyer each found the back of the net.

Otterbein mustered a late flurry of goals before halftime as the teams combined for 18 scores in the first half. The Cardinals continued their momentum to start the second half, cutting Transy's advantage to three goals, but Carlow scored in the 40th minute to start another scoring run of six straight goals; when McCulley knocked in the sixth and final goal of that run on a free position shot with 11 minutes left in the game, the Pioneers had secured a towering 18-9 lead.

Four different Pioneers finished the day with hat-tricks, led by Ward, McCulley and Johnston's four-goal days. Carlow registered three goals in the victory while Johnston tallied a game-high three assists.

For the second-straight afternoon, junior midfielder Bailee Stevens led Transylvania with 10 draw controls while Wuest led the Pioneers with four ground balls and four caused turnovers. Junior goalie Mackenzie Dent collected nine saves in the win.

Sunday's victory marks the first 2-0 start in program history since Transylvania's inaugural year of women's lacrosse in 2013.

The Pioneers return to action on Thursday, March 1 as they host the Wittenberg University Tigers in their home opener at Pat Deacon Stadium. Transylvania and Wittenberg square off at 5:00 p.m.

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