HANOVER, Ind. – The No. 14 Hanover women's soccer team suffered a 3-0 loss to Mount St. Joseph in the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference Tournament Finals Saturday afternoon.
The Panthers, who won their fifth HCAC regular season title in six years this season, fall to 17-2-0 with the loss. The Lions improve to 16-2-3 and receive the league's automatic bid into the NCAA Division III National Tournament, which starts next weekend. Hanover, who had a program-record 17-match win streak snapped Saturday, will wait to see if they are fortunate enough to receive an at-large bid into the "Big Dance."
Despite a 20-17 edge in total shots, the Blue and Red were unable to find the back of the net over the 90-minut session Saturday. Six of HC's tries came on goal but all them were turned away by the MSJ netminder. Most of the offensive attack came in the second half, where HC outshot the Lions 16-7.
Both sides had quality looks early but it was MSJ that capitalized with a goal in the 21st minute. The Lions also had the only remaining shot on goal over the final 24-plus minutes of the first half but sophomore Katie Perry (Indianapolis, Ind.) made one of her career-high five saves. Perry was making just the second start of her collegiate career and first start of the season on Saturday.
The Panthers had five shots on goal in the second half, including tries from senior Cassidy Evanson (Carmel, Ind.) and freshman Bryn Rolfsen (Loveland, Ohio) within a minute of each other early on. MSJ though, denied all five tries and added two more goals to its scoring column for the victory.
Evanson finished with a team-high three shots on goal. Junior Brandi Brock (Cincinnati, Ohio), who scored the regular season championship-clinching goal on a double overtime penalty kick at MSJ last week, tallied a team-high four total shots.
Hanover's season will now be determined at 1:30 p.m., Monday, Nov. 5, with the NCAA Division III National Tournament selection show. The Panthers entered the conference tournament week No. 4 in the NCAA Great Lakes regional rankings. The show will be made available on NCAA.com at the time mentioned above.
Contact: Tyler Jester