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USC Lacrosse Opens Pac-12 Tournament Against Buffaloes

May 4, 2021

LOS ANGELES – USC (9-6) returns to the Bay Area in defense of its 2019 Pac-12 tournament championship this weekend and opens play as the second seed in the semifinal against third-seeded Colorado (7-6). The Trojans defeated the Buffaloes in the last tournament championship game held in Eugene, Ore., on April 28, 2019; and split the regular-season series with CU this spring.

Stanford Stadium • Stanford, Calif.
Wednesday, May 5 - Saturday, May 8

GAME #16 • Thursday, May 6 • 7:30 p.m. PT
[2] USC (9-6) vs. [3] Colorado (7-6)
Pac-12 Tournament Semifinal #2
SERIES HISTORY: USC leads, 8-4 (.667) • STREAK: Lost 1
LAST MEETING: L, 13-11 (Apr. 2, 2021 • Boulder, Colo.)
TV: Pac-12 Networks (Troy Clardy & Kara Lentz)


  • USC is the defending Pac-12 tournament champion as winner of the 2019 tournament hosted by Oregon in Eugene, Ore.
  • The Trojans lead the Pac-12 in caused turnovers (10.07 ctpg), and fewest turnovers (14.60 topg) per game.
  • USC's last opponent in the Pac-12 tournament was Colorado in the 2019 championship game. The Trojans won, 12-3, and improved to 3-1 all-time in tournament games (2018-19).
  • The Trojans have scored 20 goals three times this season. That total equals the seventh highest in a single game in program history.
  • USC is 11-3 all-time in the Northern California Bay Area, which includes games in Moraga, Calif. (Saint Mary's College). All three losses were dealt by Stanford.
  • Sr. midfielder Kelsey Huff (117) became the sixth player in school history to score 100 career goals on April 4 at Oregon; and Sr. attacker Izzy McMahon (106) became the seventh on April 18 against Stanford.
  • Gr. attacker Maddie McDaniel is the fifth player in USC history to eclipse the 100 draw controls mark (144) and ranks second in the Pac-12 at 9.60 dcpg.
  • Ninth-year head coach Lindsey Munday is 110-48 all-time (.696) and was the Pac-12 Coach of the Year in 2019.

The Women of Troy own three conference tournament championships including the 2019 Pac-12 title. USC also won back-to-back Mountain Pacific Sports Federation tournaments in 2016 and 2017. In two appearances, the Trojans are 3-1 in the Pac-12 tourney with a semifinal loss to eventual champion Stanford in 2018.
Graduate attacker Maddie McDaniel ranks second in the Pac-12 with 9.60 draw controls per game and is fourth in the NCAA. Graduate attacker Izzy McMahon leads USC with 51 points (30g, 21a) and has racked up five hat trick games. Senior midfielder Kelsey Huff has 41 points (35g, 6a) and moved into third all-time at USC for career hat tricks (23) this season.
Sophomore attacker Ella Heaney has 30 goals to rank second in the Pac-12 with a .600 shot percentage (22nd nationally). Senior defender Lizzy Wagner leads field players with 27 ground balls has 14 caused turnovers. Senior defender Natalie Byrne has caused 16 turnovers and has 18 ground balls. Senior goalie Riley Hertford is up to 30-career wins and leads the team with 33 ground balls. Among Trojan newcomers, freshman attacker Madison Waters now has three hat tricks. Waters has amassed 23 points (21g, 2a) with 20 ground balls and 12 caused turnovers.
THE CHAMP IS HERE!: USC won the 2019 Pac-12 regular-season and tournament titles. The Trojans own three conference championships as winners of two Mountain Pacific Sports Federation crowns (2016, '17). In a preseason poll, USC was picked by Pac-12 head coaches to finish in a tie for first with Colorado.
CLOSE CALLS: Five of USC's games this season have been decided by two goals or fewer with two overtime one-goal finishes. All five of those games have occurred since April 2 (at Colorado); five of the last six regular-season contests. The Trojans are 2-3 in those games with the wins over California (12-11 in overtime) and at Arizona State (16-14). The three losses were to the Buffaloes on the road (13-11), to Stanford at home (16-15), and to San Diego State in overtime (14-13).
PAC IT UP: 2021 marks the fourth season of Pac-12 lacrosse. In 2018, the Conference of Champions made lacrosse the 13th women's sport sponsored by the Pac-12 after the addition of Arizona State gave the league the minimum six teams to receive an automatic qualifier berth into the NCAA championship. The first Pac-12 Lacrosse Championship was held at Prentup Field and hosted by Colorado. Stanford claimed the first Pac-12 title and USC won the second in 2019. Previously a member of the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation, from the end of 2015 to the middle of the 2018 season, USC won a school-record 22 consecutive conference games. The Trojans were undefeated in the MPSF in 2016 (9-0) and 2017 (8-0). USC won the 2016 and 2017 MPSF championships. USC is 23-8 all-time in Pac-12 regular-season games (13-4 home, 10-4 road) with a 3-1 mark in the Pac-12 tournament. The Trojans are 9-0 all-time in league openers and earned its first victory in a Pac-12 opener, 14-3, against Arizona State in 2018. 
PAC-12 POW-WOW: USC players own 18 Pac-12 Player of the Week awards. Senior goalie Riley Hertford was chosen for her league-record sixth career award on March 8. She won the honor three times in a shortened 2020 season and twice in 2019. Graduate defender Natalie Byrne was named Defensive Player of the Week on April 26. Among other current Trojans, Sophia Donovan (Mar. 18, 2019) and Kelsey Huff (Apr. 1, 2019) were named for the offensive award once each in their careers. Of the 18 times a USC player has won the award, 13 are of the defensive variety; five for offensive honors.