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Field Hockey Tripped Up By Top-Ranked Middlebury

Field Hockey Tripped Up By Top-Ranked Middlebury

Hartford, Conn. – After a scoreless first half, the top-ranked Middlebury College Panthers scored twice in the second half to come away with a 2-0 victory over the No. 15-ranked Trinity College Bantams in New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) field hockey action on Saturday at a rainy Robin Sheppard Field in Hartford.

Middlebury remains unbeaten on the year, improving to 12-0 overall and 7-0 in conference. The Bantams, who had won eight-straight games coming into the day, fall to 9-3 on the year and 5-3 in NESCAC action. The Bantams return to the turf tomorrow for a noon matchup with No. 3-ranked Tufts University.

Middlebury's defense played stout all day, holding the Bantams to just two total shots. Neither team was able to find the back of the box in the first 35 minutes, however Middlebury managed to tally five shots on goal. Trinity senior keeper Lori Berger (Scottsdale, Ariz.) played strong in the first half, stopping five Panther shots to keep the visitors off the scoreboard. Middlebury earned six penalty corner opportunities but the Bantam defense held its own in front of Berger.

In the second half, Trinity had its first short corner of the game with 27 minutes showing on the clock, but senior co-captain Chandler Solimine (Pelham, N.Y.) sailed a shot wide right of the cage. Solimine missed the net again on another penalty corner minutes later, this time lifting a shot over the cage as the game remained scoreless.

Middlebury finally connected in the 60th minute set up by a penalty corner. Emma Johns (North Andover, Mass.) sent a pass to Erin Nicholas (Scarsdale, N.Y.) who carried the ball towards the cage before scoring to break the tie. The Panthers scored once more with 3:02 left on a goal by Johns who converted a penalty stroke after a Bantam foul near the goal.