Third-ranked Middlebury scored two goals in the opening 6:49 of play and made it stand up for a 2-0 road victory Wednesday at #10 Skidmore. With the win, the Panthers improve to 5-1 overall, while the Thoroughbreds dip to 7-2. Middlebury remains on the road when it travels to Colby for a NESCAC contest Saturday at 11:00 a.m.
The Panthers got on the board just 30 seconds into the game. Following a long shot by Skidmore, Middlebury corralled the ball from outside its own penalty circle and fired a long pass that found the stick of Annie Leonard just outside the Skidmore penalty circle. Leonard moved toward the center and fired a high shot that beat Skidmore goalie Elizabeth Coughlin to her right.
The goal for Leonard was her team-leading 10th tally of the season, and the two points also gives the junior 100 career points (43-14-100) in 45 games played.
A little more than six minutes later at 6:49, Molly Freeman doubled the Panther lead when she corralled the ball off a deflection, and tipped it home to give Middlebury the 2-0 lead.
Skidmore had a few opportunities to bring the game closer in the second half. The best came as a part of a penalty corner in the 57th minute when Becca Halter uncorked a shot, but Middlebury goalie Emily Miller got a pad on and kicked away.
Miller made five saves in goal to earn the win for her second shutout this season and 10th of her career, moving her into fourth place in the program's record book for career shutouts. Coughlin recorded eight saves for the Thoroughbreds. Middlebury finished with a 17-10 advantage in shot and a narrow 7-6 edge in penalty corners.