Top-Ranked Middlebury Blanks Rensselaer, 4-0

Molly Freeman scored a goal and assisted on another in Tuesday's win.
Molly Freeman scored a goal and assisted on another in Tuesday's win.

The top-ranked Middlebury field hockey team scored three times in the opening half en route to a 4-0 road victory Tuesday at Rensselaer (2-9). The triumph also extends the Panthers' win streak to 27-straight games dating back to last fall. Middlebury (11-0) remains on the road Saturday, traveling to 15th-ranked Trinity for an 11:00 a.m. start.

The Panthers raced out to an early lead, netting a pair of goals in the opening 11 minutes of the game. Grace Jennings gave Middlebury a 1-0 lead 8:28 into the contest, knocking in a feed from Molly Freeman on a two-on-one, which was created by a long pass from Isabel Chandler. The lead doubled 2:16 later, as Freeman swept in a loose ball in front of the Engineer cage.

Marissa Baker tacked on the game's third tally at the midway point of the half, lifting a rebound over Rensselaer goalie Rachel Kaufman for a 3-0 cushion for the visitors.

The Panthers continued the scoring in the second stanza, making it a four-goal difference 7:27 into the new stanza. After an insert by Meg Fearey on a penalty corner, Erin Nicholas sent a short pass to the front of the net where Alison Denby knocked in her first career tally and the only score in the final 35 minutes.

In goal for Middlebury, Megan Collins (61:49) and Grace Harlan (8:11) combined on the shutout without facing a shot, while Kaufman recorded 14 stops for the Engineers.

The visitors held a 35-3 advantage in shots and took all 16 penalty corners in the contest.

Middlebury's offense scored at least four goals for the ninth time in 11 games this season and have outscored the opposition 51-10 this season.