Transylvania Athletics Gears Up for Lacrosse

by Abby Ferguson

Though plans for location are uncertain, and coaches have yet to be hired, Transylvania University has announced plans to form both a men’s and a women’s lacrosse team.

The teams, which will round out Transy’s total athletic offerings to 20, will start competing in the 2012-2013 season.

“Lacrosse is growing in popularity in Kentucky and around the country. We want to give student-athletes who play lacrosse and who are also seeking a top-level liberal arts education the opportunity to consider Transylvania as an alternative,” said President Owen Williams in an announcement on Inside Transy. “Adding these student-athletes will enrich the campus experience for the entire Transy community.”

Several locations have offered to host the new teams, but the decision will be up to the new coaches.

“What I’m trying to do is have some options already set up for them, and then they’re going to take the options they think will work with what they want to do,” said Transylvania Director of Athletics Jack Ebel.

The announcement came after a decision by the president and board of trustees, which will also supply the funding for the new teams.

“This is all new money; we’re not cutting athletic department programs to fund this,” said Ebel.

With the addition of lacrosse, the hope is to broaden the Transy community by attracting more male students and bringing more diversity, according to Ebel.

“This is not a sport that is big in Kentucky. A lot of the high schools have club teams, but it’s not a (Kentucky High School Athletic Association) sponsored sport,” said Ebel. “The coach will probably rely some on Kentucky students, but we’re going to be recruiting from out of state, which hopefully will increase the diversity.”

Lacrosse varies between men and women. With men, it is a full-contact sport similar to football or soccer. Instead of feet or hands, the ball is transported across the field using a long stick, called a crosse, with a net at the end. For men, there are 10 members on the field at any one time.

Women’s lacrosse follows the same concept, except it is strictly noncontact and has 12 members on the field at a time.

Potential rivals for Transy’s future lacrosse team include Hanover College, Defiance College and the College of Mount St. Joseph, who are some of Transy’s competition in the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference.

Mount St. Joseph offers lacrosse teams for both men and women, while Defiance and Hanover offer the sport to only men.

Lacrosse’s season occurs during the spring. The addition of lacrosse will balance out the athletic offerings in each term.

Transy started its search for coaches Wednesday and next year the plan is to spend time recruiting and preparing for competition in the 2012-2013 season.


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