Pioneers fade in second half against Wittenberg after blistering start

Julie Ward on the move with the stick and ball

Lexington, Ky. – The Transylvania women's lacrosse team saw an early start fade away against the Wittenberg University Tigers as the Pioneers took a 15-11 defeat Thursday evening at Pat Deacon Stadium.

The Pioneers moved to 2-1 on the season after Thursday's loss in its 2018 home opener. Wittenberg improved to 1-1 on the year.

Freshman attackers Shelby Wuest and Rachel Johnston each registered their third consecutive multi-goal games to open up their careers in Wednesday's match. The freshman combined for four of Transylvania's first seven goals as the Pioneers surged ahead, 7-1 on Wittenberg 14 minutes into the contest.

Wittenberg responded by scoring eight of the final nine goals in the half to claim a 9-8 lead heading into halftime.

Freshman midfielder Salem Carlow evened up the action one minutes and 15 seconds into the second half by delivering the equalizing goal for a 9-9 score. But Wittenberg went on another significant run, scoring five consecutive goals to go on top, 14-9.

The Pioneers found their footing late in the contest, getting goals from Johnston for her third-straight hat-trick to start the season, and from junior midfielder Emma Oliver, but defensive consistency from Wittenberg put the game out of reach for Transy.

The Pioneers outgained Wittenberg 33-26 in ground balls and mustered a 17-for-23 clearing percentage compared to a 15-for-27 rate by the Tigers.

Oliver led the Pioneers in ground balls with five total while adding two goals in Thursday's game.

Transylvania returns to play next Wednesday, March 7 as the Pioneers visit Earlham College in Richmond, Indiana. Opening draw is set for 7:00 p.m. on the campus of Earlham College.

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