No. 16 HPU WLAX Repeats as Big South Champions with 18-7 Win over Winthrop

• The Panthers won the Big South Tournament title for the second year in a row
• It is HPU’s 16th consecutive win, tying the program record from 2017
• High Point advances to its fourth NCAA Tournament (2013, 2014, 2017)

HIGH POINT, N.C. — The No. 16/17 High Point University women’s lacrosse team ran away in the second half and defeated Winthrop, 18-7, to win the Big South Tournament Championship for the second year in a row Sunday afternoon (May 6) at Vert Stadium.

It is the Panthers’ fourth Big South Tournament title (2013, 2014, 2017) and with the win, High Point earned the conference’s automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. It will be the Panthers’ fourth NCAA Tournament appearance. Last year, HPU advanced to the NCAA Second Round and became the first team in High Point University history to win an NCAA Division I Tournament contest.

The Panthers have won 16 games in a row, tying last year’s school-record win streak and have won 17 games in a season for the first time in school history. Overall, HPU has won 33 of its last 36 games. The Purple & White finished undefeated against Big South competition in the regular season and tournament for the second year in a row.

The tournament title is the HPU Athletic Department’s eighth conference regular season or tournament championship this school year. The previous most in department history was five.

High Point (17-2) scored six of the first seven goals on the way to a 9-4 halftime lead. In the second half, the Eagles (14-6) cut the lead to 10-5 with 24:14 left, but the Panthers scored the next seven to break open the game.

“We are very excited to come away with this win and keep this championship at High Point University,” HPU head coach Lyndsey Boswell said. “We are thankful for this beautiful weather, this amazing campus and for this 2018 Big South Championship.

“The biggest thing for us this weekend was to stay true to ourselves and to the game plan. I feel like we’ve done that all year long and we’ve found success through that. It was about just being who we are and I thought that was a really clear showing today.”

Junior Samantha Herman was named the Tournament MVP after earning five draw controls, two ground balls and a goal on Sunday. Herman was joined on the Big South All-Tournament Team by senior Olivia Nostrant, sophomore Jill Rall and freshman Abby Hormes.

Hormes led the Panthers with five goals and two assists and is now three goals shy of Samantha Brown’s HPU single-season goal record of 58. She also added a season-high eight draw controls.

Senior Erica Perrotta added four goals and two assists, while fellow senior Brooke Stevens tallied a pair of goals and two assists. Stevens now has 85 points on the season and is two shy of Brown’s HPU single-season record of 87.

Junior Valerie Pelling, sophomore Ashley Britton and freshman Kaely Kyle each added two goals each.

Senior Casey Kotchenreuter led the team with three caused turnovers on the defensive end, while Rall made seven saves in net.

The Panthers will learn their NCAA Tournament fate Sunday night with the NCAA Selection Show scheduled to begin at 9:30 p.m. on