The Middlebury men's soccer team saw its season come to an end with a 1-0 loss to Stevens in an NCAA first-round game at SUNY Cortland. The game was the final contest for Middlebury head coach David Saward, who completes his 33-year career with a record of 359-126-59 (.714). The Panthers end their season with a 12-7 mark, the first season without a tie since 1998.
Middlebury saw its first opportunity to get on the board 11:15 into the game when Brandon Reid gained some space in the box, but his shot went just wide of the goal.
Middlebury had a good chance to score off a corner kick from Ben Potter at the 34:05 mark. Reid connected with the kick from Potter, but was denied by Stevens' goalkeeper Aaron Henry.
Reid had a good look on a corner kick in the 39th minute, but his shot was saved. The Panthers held a 7-1 shots advantage heading into the intermission.
Middlebury continued strong in the second half, with Drew Goulart getting space one-on-one versus the keeper, but his shot was denied in the 51st minute. The Panthers' best chance to score came in the 61st minute of play when Daniel O'Grady's shot hit the crossbar from 15 yards away.
Stevens just missed on a header a few minutes later by Nikolai Figueroa as the shot went high.
A hand ball in the penalty area was whistled on the Panthers with just 1:32 remaining, as Kevin Brito converted to give the Ducks the 1-0 win.
Middlebury finished with a 9-6 edge in shots as Jeremy Yeager made one save in goal. Henry made four stops for Stevens.
Middlebury had won all nine of its 1-0 games this season prior to the NESCAC Final loss to Tufts and today's contest.