Transy Women’s Basketball Clinches Sixth Straight HCAC Tournament Title; Wins 60th Consecutive Game

Image Credit: Transylvania University

On Saturday, February 24th, the Transylvania Pioneers Women’s Basketball team clinched the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference Tournament title, defeating the Mount St. Joseph University Lions 74-46 in the championship game. The victory marks the sixth year in a row the Pioneers have captured the conference title, with the past three years all being with perfect records. The defending national champion Pioneers now head to the NCAA Tournament riding a 60-game winning streak. 

Transylvania entered the tournament as the number one seed after going undefeated in conference play and consequently earned a first-round bye. The Pioneers faced the number four-seeded Franklin College Grizzlies in the semifinals on Friday the 23rd. The Pioneers, who boast the number one scoring defense in Women’s D3, opened the game on a 23-0 scoring run, with the Grizzlies not scoring a basket until over seven minutes had elapsed in the first quarter. After a dominant 28-4 first quarter, the Pioneers were able to cruise to an 83-52 victory, advancing to the HCAC Tournament Championship for the eighth year in a row. The next day, the Pioneers faced the number three-seeded Lions in the championship. After facing an early deficit halfway through the first quarter, the Pioneers roared to life on offense, holding a 22-point lead at halftime. The eventual 74-46 victory was a joint effort from both sides of the ball, with Fifth Year Guard Kennedi Stacy scoring a career-high 32 points and the Pioneer defense holding the Lions to only 4 points in the third quarter and 18 points for the entire second half. 

The victory marks the sixth consecutive year the Pioneers have captured the HCAC Tournament Title. The Pioneers had previously captured the HCAC Regular Season Crown for the third year in a row and the eleventh time overall. Stacy and Fifth Year Forward Dasia Thornton were named to the All-Tournament team, with Stacy being named tournament MVP. This is in addition to the numerous regular season honors that the Pioneers earned, with Thornton winning HCAC Player of the Year, Stacy being named Defensive Player of the Year, head coach Juli Fulks taking home Coach of the Year honors, Stacy and Thornton being named to the All-Conference First team, and Fifth Year Forward Laken Ball, Senior Forward Sydney Wright, and Junior Point Guard Sadie Wurth being named to the All-Conferene Second team. 

The win improves the Pioneer’s season record to 27-0. This will be the third year in a row that the Pioneers will enter the NCAA Tournament with a perfect record. The Pioneers, having won the 2022-23 National Championship with an undefeated record, currently hold a 60-game winning streak. This streak is tied for the fifth longest in the history of D3 Women’s Basketball and the twelfth longest in the history of all college basketball. 

The Pioneers, who are ranked No. 2 in the nation by, begin their title defense in the NCAA Tournament on Friday, March 1st in the Beck Center, having earned home-court advantage in the first four rounds of the tournament. Transy will face the Chatham University Cougars in the first round of the tournament on Friday at 8:00 P.M. Should the Pioneers advance to the second round, they would face the winner of an earlier match between the Ohio Wesleyan University Battling Bishops and the Emory University Eagles at 7:30 P.M. on Saturday the 2nd.