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Ryan Wood

Sophomore defender Ryan Wood was named to the All-HCAC first team.

Men’s soccer wins HCAC

The men’s soccer team won the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference regular season and tournament championships on its way to a third straight appearance in the NCAA Division III national tournament.

Under head coach Brandon Bowman, the Pioneers finished with a 7-1 HCAC regular season record and were 14-3-1 overall. Transy defeated Defiance College and Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology to win the conference tournament for the fourth straight year and five of the last six.

Transy faced Ohio Northern University in the first round of the NCAA tournament, a team the Pioneers had taken to overtime in a 1-1 tie to begin the season. Playing at host Ohio Wesleyan University, Transy and Ohio Northern played a scoreless first half before the Bears broke through in the second half for a 2-0 win.

The only regular season losses came in a 1-0 game with HCAC foe Anderson University and a 2-1 overtime contest against Muskingum College.

This season’s success added to a legacy that has established the Pioneers as a perennial soccer power. Since joining the HCAC six years ago, Transy has been virtually unstoppable, losing but one conference tournament game and just two regular season contests.

“The key to our success over the past few seasons has been peaking at the right time,” Bowman said. “We feel unlucky not to have advanced beyond the first round in the NCAA the past couple of years. Our goal next year will be to win some tournament games.”

Individual honors came when six Pioneers were named to the All-HCAC first team, led by a pair of seniors, forward Matt Burton and goalkeeper Marc Frank. Joining them were juniors Matt Karaffa (midfielder), Ryan Dale (defender), and Matt Vogel (defender), and sophomore defender Ryan Wood. Frank was an HCAC Player of the Week, as was junior midfielder Andrew Zemanski.

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