Freshman Elaine Simpson scored two goals on Saturday to boost Hanover women's soccer team to first place in the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference with a 4-0 win over Bluffton (Ohio) at home.

Hanover, now 4-0-1 in the HCAC, has sole possession of first place after Transylvania knocked off undefeated Rose-Hulman on Saturday, 1-0 in overtime.

The Panthers spent most of the day on the offensive attack, outshooting Bluffton (4-7, 2-3 HCAC) 32-4 with an 11-0 corner kick advantage. Freshman Anna Cornacchione gave Hanover their lone score of the half at the 17:18 mark, giving her a team-high seven goals on the season.

Hanover scored three more goals late in the second half, all coming in a span of only 10 minutes. Cornacchione found fellow freshman Mackenzie Dean for her first career goal. Simpson then scored her two goals off back-to-back assists by Rachel Alvis, sealing a 4-0 victory.

Cornacchione led the way with nine shots while Alvis had eight. Bluffton goalie Maggie Armstrong, a Switzerland County graduate, recorded a game-high 14 saves.

Hanover (11-1-2) visits Rose-Hulman on Saturday for a big HCAC showdown.

School records fall in 2-0 men's soccer win

Hanover's men's soccer team set two school records on Saturday en route to 2-0 win over Bluffton (Ohio) at home.

The Panthers, set the record for longest winning streak (6) and tied the record for most wins in a season (9), which is shared by the 2001 and 2002 squads. Hanover also remained atop the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference standings with the win.

Despite outshooting Bluffton (0-12, 0-5 HCAC) 13-3 in the first half, Hanover was unable to find the net until the second half as the two teams stayed scoreless through the break.

The Panthers finally broke through in the second period, scoring their two goals over a four-minute span midway through the half. John Wittich found freshman Matthew Eldridge at the 58:50 mark and Jacob Thomsen, a sophomore from Denmark, scored at 62:48, securing the record-setting 2-0 win.

Hanover ended the match outshooting the Beavers 24-6 and held a 3-2 corner kick advantage. Wittich and Eldridge had six shots each. Panther goalie Trevor Korfhagen had three saves in the net.

Hanover, now 9-5-1 and 5-0 in the HCAC, will seek the single-season wins record on Wednesday at College of Mount St. Joseph (Ohio).

Volleyball takes hard-fought win over Bluffton

Hanover volleyball concluded 2013 homecoming events on campus with a hard-fought 3-1 win over Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference foe Bluffton on Saturday.

The two teams battled for four sets, each decided by four points or less. Hanover won the opening game 25-23 before Bluffton came back in game two, 25-21.

The Panthers responded with identical 25-23 victories in the third and fourth sets, clinching the match and upping their conference record above the .500 mark at 3-2.

Kylie Justus (14), Rachel Hasewinkel (14) and Madison graduate Maddie Hartman (10) led the Panthers' defensive effort with a combined 38 digs. Hasewinkel also had a team-high 15 kills and three aces.

Rachel Regenaur had 14 kills while freshman Molly Murphy and sophomore Alli Deaton had 13 and 15 assists, respectively.

Hanover, now 12-13, hosts HCAC rival Franklin on Wednesday.