Middlebury dropped a tight road game at the University of New England (9-3) on Saturday, falling by a score of 63-61. The Panthers (9-2) return to action on Tuesday when they host Plattsburgh State in Pepin Gym at 5:30 p.m.
Middlebury held a 6-2 lead early after a pair of free throws from Maya Davis. The Panthers held their largest lead of the quarter when Betsy Knox scored with 12 seconds remaining, making it a 14-9 game.
Middlebury extended the lead to eight (20-12) on another bucket from Knox, this one at the 6:28 mark. UNE followed with a 10-3 run, making it a one-point game (23-22) on a three from Abby Cavallaro with 1:38 on the clock. The Panthers closed the half on a 5-0 spurt to lead 28-22 at the break.
The Nor'easters opened the second session on a 7-0 run to cut the margin to one (29-28) at the 7:31 mark. The period went back and forth, with the Panthers holding a 45-42 edge after 30 minutes.
Trailing 50-46 in the fourth quarter, UNE scored the game's next eight points for a 54-50 edge with 3:58 remaining. Middlebury battled back, trailing 61-58 after a three by Reagan McDonald with 44 seconds to play. After a McDonald steal, the Panthers had the ball, with a chance to tie the game late, but a three pointer missed and a free throw sealed the 62-58 win for the Noreasters.
McDonald paced the Panthers with a career high 19 points to go along with four assists and three steals. Knox recorded her sixth double-double of the year with 18 points and a career-best 18 rebounds in the game. Davis added nine points in the contest.
Cavallaro led all scorers with 23 points, while Jocelyn Chaput added 15 for the hosts.
Middlebury dominated the boards with a 46-28 advantage.