NEW WILMINGTON, Pa. – After earning its first bid into the Ohio River Lacrosse Conference Tournament a season ago, the league's head coaches believe the Hanover women's lacrosse team will be a top four squad again this spring.
With 101 points, Hanover has been picked to finish fourth in the ORLC Preseason Poll, as the conference has extended to 12 teams in 2018 with the edition of two first-year programs, Chatham (Pa.) and Earlham (Ind.). Defending champion, Washington & Jefferson (Pa.), garnered six first place votes and 137 points to top the standings. Transylvania notched five first place votes for 137 points, and Saint Vincent (Pa.) grabbed the remaining first place vote and 125 points to cap off the top three.
Mt. St. Joseph rounded out the top five with 86 points. The remainder of the poll includes Franklin (85), Thiel (62), Thomas More (57), Westminster (54), Chatham (44), Waynesburg (28) and Earlham (23).
The fourth place prediction is the highest in program history, as the Panthers are entering their fourth year of existence. In each of the last two seasons, HC has improved upon their preseason prognosis, including a jump from sixth to fourth a year ago.
2018 will mark the second year for Hanover under head coach Brandon Allwood, who guided the Blue and Red to 9-8 overall and 6-3 ORLC records last spring, both of which established new program highs. Allwood was named 2017 ORLC Coach of the Year for his squad's performance.
The Panthers will have a pair of first team all-ORLC selections returning this spring in seniors Mallory Fogus (Grosse Ile, Mich.) and Abby Shroyer (Zionsville, Ind.). Both Fogus and Shroyer have been all-conference selections in each of their first three seasons with the Blue and Red, leading the offense and defense, respectively.
Hanover's season will open with three games in four days, all away from the friendly confines of Alumni Stadium. The Panthers open the 2018 campaign against coach Allwood's alma mater, Albion (Mich.), at 3 p.m., Sun. Feb. 25.
Contact: Tyler Jester