Panther women’s hockey moves to No. 3 in NCAA

NEW LONDON, Conn. — The Middlebury College women’s hockey team won twice this past weekend at NESCAC foe Connecticut to extend its unbeaten streak to 16 games and improve to 16-2-3 overall, 11-1-2 in league play. The Camels’ record fell to 11-8-3, 6-6-2 in NESCAC.
The Panthers moved up a notch to No. 3 in the NCAA Division III poll and are in first place in league play ahead of Amherst (9-1-2 NESCAC), which is ranked No. 8 in D-III.
The Panthers wrap up their league schedule with two 7 p.m. games vs. Williams this weekend, on the road on Friday and at home on Saturday. Their regular season concludes with a non-league home game vs. No. 2 Plattsburgh on Feb. 21. Amherst has two league games apiece left with Trinity and Bowdoin, both hovering near .500.
On Saturday, the Panthers defeated host Connecticut, 3-0, as Middlebury goalie Madeleine Marsh worked a 31-save shutout and improved her personal mark to 9-0-2.
With six minutes left in the first, the Panthers took a 1-0 lead when Jessica Young slapped home a feed to the slot from Emily Fluke. It was Young’s 12th goal of the season and Fluke’s team-leading 19th assist.
In the middle period, the Panthers extended their lead with 4:35 remaining when Hannah Bielawski netted a Maddie Winslow rebound. Katie Mandigo closed out the scoring with an empty-netter after the Camels pulled goalie Kelsie Fralick (32 saves). Anna Van Kula and Julia Wardwell were credited with assists.
On Friday, Middlebury scored three goals in the third period in a 4-1 win over the Camels.
Winslow put the Panthers on the scoreboard with 42 seconds left in the second period, when she converted a cross-crease pass from Young.
With 11:47 remaining in regulation, Camel Steph Izzi buried a slap shot from the top of the circles to tie the game.
Middlebury answered 3:20 later when Mandigo pounced on a rebound in the slot. Fluke and Young tacked on empty-net goals to create the final score.
Panther goalie Annabelle Jones finished with 20 saves, while Fralick stopped 33 shots for the Camels.

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