The 18th-ranked Middlebury men's squash team dropped a narrow 5-4 decision to No. 14 Virginia on Saturday in a match played at the Lancaster Country Day School in Pennsylvania. The Panthers (10-3), who saw a program-record eight-match winning streak end, return to action Sunday when play at No. 17 Franklin & Marshall beginning at 11:00 a.m.
Virginia (10-4) took the early lead with a three-game victory at No. 8. Middlebury responded with a sweep by Nick Bermingham over Toby Hansford in the fourth slot (11-6, 11-8, 11-8). The Cavaliers grabbed a 4-1 lead behind wins at No. 2, No. 6 and No. 9, respectively.
The Panthers moved to within 4-2 when John Epley defeated Glenn Yates in four games in the seventh slot (11-3, 11-8, 5-11, 11-6). Virginia clinched the decisive fifth team point behind a three-game win at No. 3.
Middlebury claimed the last two matches to finish, each coming in five games. Justin Ghaeli fought back from a two-game deficit for the victory over Patrick McElroy (6-11, 6-11, 11-8, 11-8, 11-9), while Teddy Best edged Grayson Bubrosky in the middle of the ladder (6-11, 11-8, 7-11, 11-6, 11-9).