Middlebury scored three first period goals and never looked back as they picked up a 6-1 win over Babson in the Middlebury College Holiday Classic Tournament in the Kenyon Arena. The Panthers advance to take on Amherst, a 3-2 winner over Southern Maine, in the championship game at 4:00 p.m. on New Years Day. Babson meets S. Maine in the consolation game at 1:00 p.m.
Middlebury jumped out to a 2-0 lead with a pair of power play goals in the game's first 3:54. Ian Drummond struck first, nine seconds into a power play from the right point, while Tom Maldonado scored on a similar shot from the center of the zone just eight seconds into a power play to make it a 2-0 game. The Panthers took a 3-0 lead at 9:50 as Drummond won a face-off back to Scott Bartlett, who snapped home a shot from the top of the left face-off circle.
Darwin Hunt gave the Panthers a 4-0 lead at 4:39 of the second period as he scored in transition with a nice pass from Jeff Smith. Hunt struck again at 12:37 as he converted a breakaway to increase the lead to 5-0. Jamie McKenna scored for Middlebury at 10:54 before Greg Cassista broke up the shutout with a snapper to the top right corner with 1:13 left to play.
Doug Raeder was stellar in net for Middlebury, making 27 saves on the night, while his counterpart, Craig Weiner, was impressive with 24 stops.