Men's basketball to battle LeTourneau in Atlanta

The Hanover College men's basketball team will begin its NCAA Division III National Tournament in Atlanta, Ga., as Emory (Ga.) will host the Panthers and their opponent, LeTourneau (Texas), along with Berry (Ga.).

NCAA III men's basketball logo

Hanover (22-6) is back in the tournament for the second straight season and will be looking to experience a magical run similar to last year, which saw the team advance to its first NCAA Division III Elite Eight. The Panthers earned the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference's automatic bid by winning their second consecutive league tournament title this past weekend at Rose-Hulman.

The opening two rounds of the NCAA tournament will take place Friday and Saturday, March 2-3. Times have not yet been announced, but will be available on the Hanover men's basketball schedule page once they have been confirmed.

LeTourneau is coming off a 108-101 loss to East Texas Baptist in the American Southwest Conference Tournament championship Feb. 23. The Yellow Jackets however, have produced a 23-4 overall record in 2017-18 and, just like Hanover, have had back-to-back 20-win seasons.

The host, Emory, is 21-4 overall and finished University Athletic Association play with a 12-2 mark. Berry, the No. 8 seed in the Southern Athletic Association Tournament, pulled off three upsets en route to a tourney championship last weekend and enters the national tournament with an 11-17 overall record.

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Panthers earn second straight HCAC title, NCAA berth

Behind a combined 64 points from senior Levi Buck (Pendleton, Ind.), senior Wes McKinney (Batesville, Ind.) and junior Cam Fails (Mason, Ohio), the Hanover College men's basketball team won its second straight Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference tournament championship with an 80-70 win at Rose-Hulman Feb. 24 in Terre Haute, Ind.

Hanover men's basketball team

The Panthers (22-6) have now won five straight HCAC tournament games and receive the league's automatic bid into the NCAA Division III National Tournament, which begins next weekend. Fails was named the tournament's most valuable player after averaging 25.0 points through the three-game stretch. McKinney added 20.0 points per contest and 17 total rebounds in the tournament to also earn all-tournament accolades.

In the championship game, Fails tallied a team-high 26 points, while McKinney followed closely behind with 21. The duo has now posted 20-plus-point scoring efforts together on four occasions this season. Fails also added a season-high seven assists, three rebounds and two steals, while McKinney pitched in with six rebounds.

Buck tied a season high with 17 points on 6-of-10 shooting. He did most of his damage from behind the arc, making five of his nine three-point attempts. Junior Nick White (New Albany, Ind.) and freshman Isaac Hibbard (New Albany, Ind.) each added six points to highlight the rest of the Panther scoring. White also led the team with nine rebounds, and fresh off his HCAC tournament record-breaking seven blocks Feb. 23, he added another rejection in the finals.

Hanover never trailed in the championship game as a 7-0 scoring spurt gave them an early double-digit advantage, 15-5, just five minutes into the contest. The Blue and Red proceeded to make eight of their first 11 shots and a 13-2 run pushed the lead to 21-7 with 13:27 left in the opening period.

The Panthers pushed their first-half lead to as many as 17 points, including a 17-point advantage at the break, 46-29. Hanover finished the opening 20 minutes with a .606 shooting clip. The Panthers also forced 11 first half Rose-Hulman turnovers resulting in 13 points.

Buck, just as he did in the first half, opened play in the second stanza with a three-pointer, pushing the Panthers' advantage to 20 points, 49-29, for what would be the team's largest lead of the night. He also scored eight of the first 13 points for Hanover in the opening half.

Rose-Hulman (17-10) would not go away in the second half, cutting the Panthers' lead to 11 points on two occasions. With chances to cut it to single digits, Fails denied the Engineers defensively by taking a charge and recording a key deflection in transition. The junior also made a few timely shots down the stretch to fend off a Rose-Hulman comeback attempt.

The Engineers would cut the deficit to eight points with four minutes remaining but that would be as close as they would get. Hanover outscored the Engineers 8-6 after the final media timeout to secure the championship.

Hanover shot better than 50 percent for the eighth straight game (.561).

The Panthers have won back-to-back HCAC regular-season and tournament championships for the first time since the 2003-04 and 2004-05 campaigns. Hanover's 48 combined wins since the start of the 2016-17 season is now tied for the fourth most in any successive years in program history.

Hanover will now wait to see what the future will hold for next weekend's games. The NCAA Division III Tournament Selection Show will be held at 12:30 p.m., Monday, Feb. 26.

Women's golf seeks fifth straight HCAC Championship this weekend

Headshots of competing athletes

TOURNAMENT PAGE

SEASON STATISTICS

HANOVER, Ind. – The Hanover women’s golf team will look for its fifth consecutive Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference championship this weekend, as they compete in the nine-team league event at Keene Run Golf Club.

The Panthers have put together a strong 2017 fall campaign and will look to ride that momentum to another conference championship in Nicholasville, Ky. this Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 14 and 15.

Hanover has won two tournaments as team, while also recording three individual victories in six events this season. Sophomores Allison Goodwin (Lebanon, Ind.) and Maddie Cody (Brownsburg, Ind.) are responsible for the three individual medalist awards, winning one and two tournaments respectively. The duo also earned the first two HCAC Player of the Week awards this fall and are two of three Panther golfers competing this weekend with all-conference accolades.

Goodwin, the 2016 HCAC Freshman of the Year, will look for similar success in the second conference meet of her career, as she finished third overall last season. The sophomore currently leads the team in scoring average, 82.00 and has been arguably the most consistent golfer for HC this season, recording just a six-stroke difference from her lowest and highest rounds.

Cody will look for her third individual title of the season and is coming off a fifth-place finish in the 2016 HCAC Championship. The Brownsburg, Ind. native is second on the squad with a scoring average of 82.64.

The third Panther with all-HCAC accolades is senior Ellen Wuerch (Fortville, Ind.), as she will be competing in her fourth conference tournament. The senior has finished inside the top 16 in each of her first three appearances, with her best finish coming in 2015, where she placed fifth overall to garner all-HCAC honors.

Junior Sam Pease (Cincinnati, Ohio) and senior Scarlett Hartlage (Floyds Knobs, Ind.) round out the lineup for Hanover this weekend. Pease finished ninth in last season’s tournament, while Hartlage’s only other appearance in the HCAC Championship came in 2015, where she registered a 17th place finish.

Hanover won its fourth straight HCAC championship last fall, besting the host, Rose-Hulman, by 12 strokes for the victory.

The Panthers competed in the HCAC Preview Tournament earlier this season, at Keene Run GC, placing fifth overall with a two-day total of 659 (333-326). With eight of the nine conference teams competing in the preview event, HC posted the third lowest total among league institutions.

The winner of the HCAC Championship will earn the league’s automatic qualifying bid into the NCAA Division III National Championship, which will take place in the spring of 2018.

For complete coverage on the 2017 HCAC Championship, visit the link above.

Contact: Tyler Jester

jestert@hanover.edu

Panthers stay unbeaten in HCAC play with 5-3 win at Franklin

Susie Winternheimer gets set to serve

BOX SCORE

FRANKLIN, Ind. – After a two-plus hour delay to start the contest, the Hanover women’s tennis team survived the marathon match at Franklin, 5-3, earning at least a share of the HCAC regular season crown for the fifth straight year.

With precipitation in the forecast over the past few days, the original 5 p.m. start time was pushed back to after 7 p.m., as the Panthers (6-2, 6-0 HCAC) celebrated their victory under the lights at Franklin (10-2, 5-1 HCAC) Wednesday evening.

Hanover got off to strong start, winning two of the three doubles matches. Junior Susie Winternheimer (Indianapolis, Ind.) and sophomore Meghan Farrell (Indianapolis, Ind.) blanked their FC opponents, 8-0, as they stayed unbeaten in conference play.

Adding a doubles victory in the second slot was sophomore Cami Jones (Richmond, Ind.) and freshman Haley Parker (Leo, Ind.), as they won 8-5. The tandem joins Winternheimer and Farrell with unblemished 6-0 HCAC records this fall.

Hanover conceded the top two singles matches, put victories at Nos. 3-5 secured the overall contest for the Panthers. Winternheimer lost just two games in her victory in the No. 3 match. Parker and freshman Addison Laker (Indianapolis, Ind.) added straight set wins in the fourth and fifth spots respectively.

With the win, Hanover stands as the only unbeaten team in HCAC play this fall. The Panthers also registered their 39th consecutive conference regular season victory Wednesday evening.

Hanover will look to secure the HCAC regular season championship outright at 11 a.m., Saturday, Oct. 14, as they host Defiance (Ohio) during Senior Day. The Panthers will also host the Yellow Jackets during Hanover’s annual Homecoming Saturday.

Contact: Tyler Jester

jestert@hanover.edu

Evanson’s game-winner sends Hanover to 1-0 win over Transy

Charlotte Verbanic running onto the field

BOX SCORE

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Junior Cassidy Evanson (Carmel, Ind.) recorded her third game-winning goal of the season Wednesday evening to give the Hanover women’s soccer team a 1-0 win over Transylvania in Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference action.

The Panthers got off two shots in the first 1:01 of the match, but did not take another until the 23rd minute. With 22:32 showing on the clock Evanson beat the Transylvania goalkeeper off an assist from sophomore Brandi Brock (Cincinnati, Ohio) for the lone goal of the match. The goal was Evanson’s third of 2017, while Brock’s assist was her second of the fall.

Hanover took three more shots in the first half to finish with a 6-4 advantage in shots, but managed only three shots in the second half to four for the Pioneers.

Transylvania (4-7-2 overall, 2-2 HCAC) tallied a corner kick and two shots within the first 10 minutes of the second half, but had only one corner kick and two shots the rest of the way.

Senior Abby Shroyer (Zionsville, Ind.) and freshman Natalie Fausz (Alexandria, Ky.) finished with two shots apiece for the Panthers.

Freshman Charlotte Verbanic (Columbus, Ind.) added to her impressive start to her collegiate career. In her third career start, she recorded her third shutout. Verbanic stopped both shots she faced and has not allowed a goal in almost 280 minutes of action this year.

Hanover, now 9-3-0 overall and 3-1-0 in the HCAC, will travel to Bluffton, Ohio Saturday, Oct. 14. Kick-off is slated for 1 p.m. at the Sears Athletic Complex.

Contact: Mike Pritchard

pritchard@hanover.edu

Volleyball wins fifth straight after 3-0 decision against MSJ

Abby Crump setting ball

BOX SCORE

HANOVER, Ind. – The Hanover volleyball team won its fifth straight overall and stayed unbeaten in HCAC play after picking up a 3-0 home win over Mount St. Joseph (Ohio) Wednesday evening.

The Panthers (16-5, 4-0 HCAC) earned their ninth 3-0 victory of the season, including their second in conference play. Hanover defeated the Lions by a count of 25-21, 25-19 and 25-18 in the sweep.

The Blue and Red’s momentum continued to grow as the match wore on, as they went from a 1.71 hitting percentage in the opening set to a .316 hitting mark in the final frame.

Overall, HC finished with a .261 hitting percentage and were led by junior Margo Main (Ann Arbor, Mich.) and senior Courtney Crawford (Louisville, Ky.), who each hit over .400. Main logged a team high 10 kills, while Crawford added eight.

Pitching in with nine kills was senior Kristin Goben (Finchville, Ky.). Goben also tied for the team lead in total blocks, as she and junior Claire Dennis (Bloomington, Ind.) each posted six rejections.

Dennis helped get the Panthers off to a fast start, logging five of her seven kills in the opening frame. With the first set tied at 18-all, Hanover used a 6-1 run to capture a late advantage. Leading by three points, Crawford registered a kill, giving HC a 25-21 opening frame decision.

It was the Lions (11-10, 1-3 HCAC) that jumped out to an early lead in the second set, but another 6-1 run by HC gave them a lead and force MSJ into a timeout.

Out of the break, the Blue and Red tacked on three straight points, taking a 15-11 advantage. Hanover, again, pulled away late in the set, taking a 2-0 match lead after winning the second game, 25-19.

The Panthers scored seven of the first 10 points in the third set, but MSJ crept back to within one point at 9-8. Hanover however, pushed its lead back out to as many as seven on numerous occasions, clinching the match with a 25-18 victory.

Juniors Abby Crump (Indianapolis, Ind.) and Haley Alexander (Martinsville, Ind.) led the assist category for HC, combining for 36 of the team’s 41 helpers. Crump also added two service aces.

Senior Monique Huynh (Indianapolis, Ind.) anchored the back line, recording a team high 16 digs. Huynh also pitched in offensively with three assists.

Hanover, who has now won 22 consecutive HCAC regular season matches, will welcome Defiance for a conference contest at 5 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 14. The match also falls on HC’s annual Homecoming Saturday.

Contact: Tyler Jester

jestert@hanover.edu

Soccer suffers setback to No. 20 Transylvania

Team gets ready to defend corner kick

BOX SCORE

HANOVER, Ind. – Despite a strong second half full of scoring opportunities, the Hanover men’s soccer team suffered its first setback during HCAC play, falling at home to No. 20 Transylvania (Ky.) Wednesday afternoon, 2-0.

The Panthers (8-4-0, 3-1-0 HCAC) controlled possession for much of the second 45-minute session, but their 6-5 shot advantage was not enough to find the back of the net.

Overall, Hanover registered nine shots in the match, as three players tied for the team high with two attempts. Senior Thomas Doering (Lexington, Ky.) had two shots in the match, as one of his two tries was on goal. Logging the only other shot on goal for HC was junior Tanner Korfhagen (Cincinnati, Ohio).

After a scoreless stalemate over the first 19 minutes of action, the Pioneers (11-0-0, 4-0-0 HCAC) found the back of the net at the 19:09 mark, as Charlie Wend scored his of two goals Wednesday. Transylvania took its 1-0 advantage into the intermission.

The Blue and Red looked to attack throughout the second half, as they tried to find the equalizer. Hanover had the match’s final five corner kicks, all coming over the final 15 minutes of play.

Hanover’s final shot attempt from freshman Renato Yostsui (Sao Jose Do Rio Prento, Brazil) came in the 84th minute, but his try was blocked by a Transy field defender.

Transylvania then added to its lead in the 88th minute. The Pioneers broke out from the backend with Wend beating Hanover goalkeeper Will Bedel (Walton, Ky.) on the left side, as Bedel was forced to charge out from the goal line.

The Panthers will look to bounce back Saturday, Oct. 14, as they travel to face Bluffton for a 3:30 p.m. contest.

Contact: Tyler Jester

jestert@hanover.edu

Harriers travel to Wilmington for final HCAC Championship prep Friday

Jacob Hedrick and Joe Rector running side by side

Written by Sports Information Student Assistant, Jake-Sipes Salter

HANOVER, Ind. - The Hanover men’s cross country team will look to continue its strong season as they travel to Wilmington, Ohio to compete in the #JennaStrong Fall Classic at 5:15 p.m. this Friday, October 13.

In their last meet at the Greater Louisville Classic, the Panthers had three finishers in the top 25, marking the first time in program history the team accomplished the feat. Junior Jacob Hedrick (Memphis, Ind.) posted the eighth-fastest time in school history for an 8-kilometer race and placed second in the overall standings, helping him to win his second HCAC Player of the Week award this season.

Sophomore Hayden Veach (Shelbyville, Ind.) also made his presence known, making a big move over the last mile to finish in 23rd place at 26:35.22. Senior Joe Rector (Aurora, Ind.) continued his strong season by placing 15th overall with a time of 26:23.15.

Freshman Andy Vilardo (Bloomington, Ind.) and sophomore Hananiah Davis (Indianapolis, Ind.) anchored Hanover as the fourth and fifth runners. Vilardo finished at 27:45.98 while Davis crossed the line at 28:36.74.

In their last appearance at the #JennaStrong race, the Panthers placed 11th out of 38 teams with a score of 340. Hedrick and Veach led the Panthers with 23rd and 43rd place finishes, coming in at 25:48.1 and 26:14.8 respectively.

Contact: Tyler Jester

jestert@hanover.edu

Women’s cross country travels to Ohio this week

team running during warm up

HANOVER, Ind. – The Hanover women’s cross country team will make its first trip to the state of Ohio this week as the Panthers will compete in the JennaStrong Wilmington Fall Classic in Wilmington, Ohio Friday, Oct. 13.

As has been the case in previous weeks, the Panthers have been competing every other week, and last participated in the Greater Louisville Classic Saturday, Sept. 30. That meet saw junior Morgan Hamilton (Centerville, Ind.) set a new personal best with at time of 20:45.79 to finish 69th overall out of 265 runners.

Sophomore Ariel Barlow (Francesville, Ind.) also finished in the top 100 with a time of 21:01.03 in the 5k event to finish 91st overall.

Hanover, and many other Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference schools, have been regular attendees at the annual Wilmington event. The Classic continues to grow each year with many recent years seeing close to 40 competing teams.

From 2004 through 2008 the Panthers finished among the top seven teams each year, with a high of fourth in 2006 when the meet averaged just over 18 teams per year. Since 2012, an average of 37 teams have competed. During that span, Hanover’s top finish came in 2012 when the Blue and Red finished eighth overall out of 33 schools.

Hanover finished 13th out of 38 schools last year with a team score of 448. Four current team members competed in last year’s meet led by Barlow, who posted the best finish among the four. The sophomore finished 134th out of 367 runners with a time of 20:56.4.

The race will be the 25th time the Quakers have hosted the Classic, and the fifth time since it’s been run in honor of Jenna Parlette, a former Wilmington runner who collapsed during a race in 2013 and passed away three days later.

The women’s 5k #JennaStrong race is scheduled to start at 4:30 p.m. Friday afternoon.

Contact: Mike Pritchard

pritchard@hanover.edu

Women's soccer to travel to Transylvania, Bluffton this week

Team huddle

SEASON STATISTICS

Written by Sports Information Student Assistant, Jake Sipes-Salter

HANOVER, Ind. – The Hanover women’s soccer team will look to capture a pair of road wins this week with Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference road matches against Transylvania (Ky.) Wednesday, Oct. 11 at 7 p.m. and Bluffton (Ohio) Saturday, October 14 at 1 p.m.

In their most recent match, the Panthers (8-3-0 overall, 2-1-0 HCAC) defeated Anderson (Ind.) 1-0. With the first half winding down, freshman Maisyn Garland (Rochester, Ill.) scored on Hanover’s sixth shot of the game. The defense held the Ravens to just two shots the rest of the way to hold on for the victory.

With her goal, Garland now sits atop the team in goals and points on the season, with four and eight respectively. Junior Cassidy Evanson (Carmel, Ind.) has recorded a team-high three assists this fall.

Transylvania will bring a 4-6-2 overall record, and a 2-1-0 mark in the HCAC into Wednesday’s contest. The Pioneers last played Saturday, Oct. 7 and defeated Defiance 2-0. The Panthers haven’t lost to Transylvania since 2010, when the Pioneers recorded a 1-0 victory. In last year’s match, Hanover won 5-0 behind a four second-half goals.

The Panthers’ Saturday opponent, Bluffton is 2-9-0 overall and 1-2-0 in the HCAC. In their most recent match over the weekend the Beavers lost 7-0 to Franklin. Hanover currently owns a winning streak over Bluffton that dates back more than a decade. The Panthers exploded for a 12-0 win in last year’s meeting, which marked the highest goal total in a match for the year.

Contact: Tyler Jester

jestert@hanover.edu