Panther women’s lacrosse declaws Bobcats; No. 1 Trinity next

MIDDLEBURY — The Middlebury College women’s lacrosse team coasted past visiting Bates on Saturday, forcing 19 turnovers in an 18-6 win. The Panthers, ranked No. 2 in NCAA Division III, improved to 10-1, 6-1 NESCAC, while the Bobcats dropped to 6-8, 2-7 NESCAC.
The Panthers remain tied with No. 1 Trinity atop the NESCAC standings. Trinity will host the Panthers on Saturday. Middlebury was set to visit third-place and ninth-ranked Hamilton (10-2, 6-2) on Wednesday.
On this past Saturday, Middlebury held a 3-1 lead before scoring eight straight goals, the first five in 2:09. Mary O’Connell scored three times in that surge. After Bates scored to make it 11-2, Hailey Cosseboom converted a feed from Katie Ritter at 0:07 to give the Panthers a 12-2 lead at the half.
O’Connell started the second half with two more tallies, giving her a career-high six.
Laurel Pascal scored three goals, while Ritter finished with two goals and a career-best five assists. Bridget Instrum and Cosseboom each scored twice, while Ritter earned a game-high five draw controls. Goalie Madeleine Kinker made three saves in 46 minutes, while Alex Freedman played the final 14 minutes.

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