Middlebury blanked visiting Hamilton 8-0 in six innings on Friday, taking game one of a three-game NESCAC West series. The heart of the Middlebury order went 8/14 from the plate, scoring seven runs, while knocking in four RBI. With the win, the Panthers improve to 12-6 overall and 3-1 in conference play, while the Continentals drop to 2-12 and 0-4 in NESCAC West action. The teams return on Saturday for a double-header starting at noon.
With a 1-0 lead heading into the bottom of the third inning, Middlebury plated three runs on four hits for a 4-0 advantage. Geena Constantin started the scoring, roping the first of her two stand-up triples on the day to right-center, scoring Megan Margel from second. Emily Burbridge knocked in Constantin with a single up the middle for a 3-0 lead. Alyson Downing capped the scoring with a two-out RBI double to the base of the fence in center, scoring Burbridge.
In the fourth, Middlebury added another run on Constantin's triple that scored Kira Gordon. The Panthers ended the game in the sixth with three more runs during a two-out rally. With runners on second and third, a wild pitch on ball four to Burbridge allowed Gordon to score from third as Constantin advanced to third on the play. With runners on second and third, pinch-hitter Jessica Poracky ended the game with a double to left field, giving the Panthers an 8-0 win after six innings of play.
The number two through five hitters for Middlebury, Gordon, Margel, Constantin and Burbridge each collected two hits, including the two triples by Constantin that bumped her average to .500 on the season. Ali McAnaney pitched six innings for the Panthers, scattering three singles for the shutout. McAnaney improved her record to 5-2, as her ERA dropped to 1.92 on the year. Mandy Hyne (1-5) suffered the loss for Hamilton allowing eight earned runs over 5.1 innings of work.