Middlebury's Jed Sass netted the game's lone goal, as the Panthers earned a 1-0 NESCAC road victory Saturday over 10th-ranked Amherst. The win was the 350th for head coach David Saward, elevating his career mark to 350-120-59 in 32-plus seasons. The Panthers (3-1-0, 1-1-0) are home on Sunday at 2:30 p.m. hosting conference opponent Hamilton, while the Mammoths (1-1-0, 1-1-0) are idle until next Saturday with a game at Williams.
The opening 45 minutes were a defensive battle, as each team only directed two shots on goal. Middlebury keeper Jeremy Yeager and Amherst's Lee Owen both made saves as the teams were scoreless at the half.
The Panthers took advantage of a Mammoth foul early in the second stanza on a direct kick by Jed Sass. The midfielder took the free kick from the top of the penalty area and hooked a shot into the left corner of the net for a 1-0 lead in the 51st minute.
Middlebury nearly added an insurance goal in the 76th minute, but Drew Goulart had his shot from close range covered by new Mammoth goalie Michael Stone.
With 1:06 left in the game, Amherst's Bryce Johnson lofted a long flip throw from the far side that found its way into the Panther net. However, the ball didn't touch another player en route to the net and was waived off by the referee, keeping the score in Middlebury's favor.
Yeager finished with five stops for his first shutout of the season, while Owen had a pair and Stone made three saves in 14:55 of playing time for the hosts. The Mammoths boasted a 15-8 advantage in shots and corner kicks at 8-3.