#9 Middlebury Rallies Past #8 Trinity

Kirsten Murphy led all players with four goals and five points on Saturday.
Kirsten Murphy led all players with four goals and five points on Saturday.

The Middlebury women's lacrosse team shrugged off a four-goal deficit in the second half, notching the game's final 10 scores for a key 14-8 NESCAC victory against eighth-ranked Trinity (9-4, 5-3) on Saturday. The ninth-ranked Panthers (10-2, 6-1) continue conference place next Saturday at Tufts, while the Bantams host Colby the same day.

Trinity got the early jump in the contest, opening the scoring 1:26 into the game on a tally by Abby McInerney. Kiley Coffey doubled the lead just over a minute later on a pass from behind the net from Jennifer Cook, while Mary French and Grace O'Connell added goals for a 4-0 lead.

The hosts got onto the scoreboard with 13:35 remaining, as Hollis Perticone fired a shot that just got through Bantam goalie Zoe Ferguson. Kirsten Murphy circled the crease for another Panther goal 53 seconds later, cutting the deficit in half. After Sophie Berger tallied for the visitors, Emily Barnard and Murphy recorded back-to-back scores, making it a one-goal contest at 5-4. French pushed the difference to ta pair of goals (6-4) at the half, netting her second of the period with 43 seconds left.

The Bantams took their biggest lead in the second half, netting the initial two scores of the new stanza. O'Donnell converted a quick-stick shot on a feed from Cook, while French buried a shot from five yards out with 21:16 on the clock.

Middlebury began its big run 50 seconds after Trinity scored, when Erin Nicholas took advantage of a free-position shot. Murphy closed the gap to 8-6, scoring off a turnover, and 43 seconds later, Perticone buried a free-position attempt for a one-goal difference (8-7) with 17:53 left to play.

The hosts tied the game 17 seconds later, as Georgia Carroll jumped into the air to quick stick a pass from Emma McDonagh. Murphy gave the Panthers their first lead of the game at 9-8, scoring on an opportunity from the eight-meter arc. It took Middlebury only 13 seconds to score again, as Perticone won the ensuring draw control and set up Casey O'Neill for a tally.

Nicholas and McDonagh added back-to-back markers on free-position shots, while Jenna McNicholas capped off the flurry of goals by the Panthers in the second half, whipping in a pair of goals on quick-stick shots. The first of those came on a nice feed from McDonagh, while Murphy distributed the other.

Murphy led all players with four goals and five points, while Perticone had a solid all-around effort for the hosts with two goals, one assist, seven ground balls and seven draw controls. McDonagh finished with a goal and two assists and in the process eclipsed the 100-point mark for her career. In 55 games as a Panther, she has recorded 101 points on 71 goals and 30 assists. Julia Keith earned the win in the crease with nine saves.

Coffey, O'Donnell and French each scored twice for the Bantams, while Cook dished out a game-high three assists. Clara Nowlan finished with four ground balls, while McInerney had four draw controls. Ferguson suffered the loss in goal, finishing with four saves.