Derek Pimentel scored two third-period goals and Liam Moorfield-Yee recorded his first career shutout, leading Middlebury to a pair of critical NESCAC points in a 3-0 win over Tufts Friday evening in Kenyon Arena. The Panthers improve to 8-7-2 overall and 6-4-1 in conference play, while the Jumobs drop to 3-14-0 and 1-10-0 in the league. Middlebury returns to the home ice Saturday afternoon for a 4:00 p.m. game against Connecticut College, while Tufts plays at Williams at 3:00 p.m.
In the first period, neither team had many scoring chances as Middlebury went 0-2 on the power play as the Panthers held a 10-5 advantage in shots.
The opening minutes of the second period played out like the first. Skating 4-on-4 after matching penalties, Middlebury’s John Barr put a charge in the crowd when he laced a shot off the right post near the midway point. Just over a minute later, Louis Belisle scored what proved to be the game-winning tally with his team-leading 12th goal of the season. Belisle followed his own initial shot and scored at 11:17 on a nifty pinpoint assist from Brendan McGovern.
The score stayed a one-goal advantage for the Panthers until the midway point of the third period. Pimentel followed his own miss and scored at the 10:42 mark via sharp passes from Belisle and Jake Charles. Not done yet, Pimentel added his second of the period and 10th of the season at 16:32 with precision passes from Mike Najjar and Belisle, as the trio covered the length of the ice with two passes.
Moorfield-Yee recorded 14 saves in his first career clean sheet, while Greg Jenkins was credited with 28 saves in the loss for the Jumbos.