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Colby defeats Panthers in men’s lax; squad on postseason bubble

MIDDLEBURY — The Middlebury College men’s lacrosse team missed a chance to nail down a NESCAC playoff berth and to post a winning regular season on Saturday, when visiting Colby defeated the Panthers, 13-10.
The Panthers dropped to 6-8, 3-6 in league play, heading into a road game at Williams (7-7, 4-5 NESCAC) on Wednesday after the deadline for this issue.
A win at Williams would have given the Panthers the No. 6 seed for a Saturday playoff quarterfinal on the road. The Panthers would probably still make the playoffs with a loss, unless Colby upsets undefeated rival Bates at the same time. If Colby and Middlebury are tied at 3-7, Colby would have the head-to-head tiebreaker and earn the final playoff berth.
The Mules on Saturday led after three periods, 11-5, but the Panthers scored four goals in 6:23 to make it 11-9.
Henry Riehl scored twice to start the rally, Frank Cosolito found the net next, and Danny Jacobs scored a man-up goal with a dish from A.J. Kucinski to make it 11-9 with 8:37 remaining.
Colby won the ensuing faceoff and began to take time off the clock. The Panther defense took possession of the ball four times, but Middlebury turned the ball back over to Colby each time. The Mules took advantage at 2:59 mark when Cillian Connor scored from 15 yards out to give his team some breathing room, and then the teams traded two late goals for the final score.
Riehl led Middlebury with four goals, Jacobs scored twice, while Kucinski added a goal and two assists. Jackson won 12-20 faceoffs, scored once, and picked up seven ground balls. Nick Peterson finished with six grounders and caused two turnovers. Goalie Charles Midgley made six saves and allowed 11 goals in 45 minutes, while Will Ernst allowed a goal with a pair of saves in the fourth quarter.
Kevin Seiler’s four goals paced Colby, while Austin Sayre finished with three and two assists, and Colton Michel netted a pair with three helpers. C.J. Layton made nine saves in goal.

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