Panther women’s soccer in tight NESCAC race
MIDDLEBURY — The Middlebury College women’s soccer team settled for a 0-0 draw vs. visiting NESCAC foe Trinity on Saturday, a result that preserved the Panthers’ seven-game unbeaten streak and allowed them to retain fourth place in the NESCAC standings with two games to go.
The Panthers (9-2-2, 4-2-2 in NESCAC) on this coming Saturday visit Bates (2-5-1 NESCAC) and next Wednesday, Oct. 24, host first-place Williams (6-0-1 NESCAC). After the weekend, Trinity stood in fifth place at 6-5-2 overall, 4-3-1 NESCAC, heading into a game at third-place Connecticut College on Wednesday.
Scoring opportunities were hard to come by in the first half of this past Saturday’s Middlebury vs. Trinity game. The Panthers had a chance in the 25th minute when Eliza Robinson hit a 25-yard knuckling shot that Bantam goalie Julia Pitino (four saves) smothered.
In the second half Trinity’s best opportunity came in the 72nd minute when Middlebury goalie Ursula Alwang (five saves) punched Tricia Pollock’s 25-yard blast just over the crossbar. The hosts nearly got on the board with about 10 minutes left in regulation when a cross sailed just past Eliza Van Voorhis before Pitino corralled the bending ball.
Following the first overtime, the Bantams had a great chance in the 102nd minute when Alwang punched Alexa Barbaresi’s curling shot from six yards just wide of the far post.
Middlebury held a 19-13 advantage in shots and both squads had seven corner kicks.
On last Wednesday, Oct. 11, the Panthers scored three times in the second half to defeat host Castleton, 3-0. Middlebury held a 9-1 edge in shots through the first 45 minutes, five from Sabrina Glaser. Glaser’s best chance came from the top of the penalty area midway through the period, but Spartan keeper Rachel Shambo (seven saves) snared it.
The Panthers broke through for the game’s initial goal 10:22 after the break. Glaser carried the ball deep into the Castleton penalty area and fed Amanda Dafonte, who buried the shot from six yards out.
Middlebury doubled the lead with 12:50 remaining when Virginia Charman knocked in the rebound of a 40-yard Robinson free kick.
Leah Salzman capped the scoring for the Panthers with 10 seconds left in the game, tucking in a short shot on an assist from Emma Shumway. Eva Shaw and Alwang shared time in the Panther goal; neither had to make a save. Middlebury outshot the Spartans, 18-2.
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