Middlebury scored once in each period, pushing its unbeaten streak to seven games (5-0-2) with a 3-0 home shutout over Endicott on Friday. The seventh-ranked Panthers (7-1-3) host UMass Boston Saturday at 3:00 p.m., while the Gulls (8-3-3) are home Monday at 6:15 p.m. against Norwich.
The visitors got off to a strong start, taking the first five shots on goal and didn't allow a Panther attempt to reach goalie Vendela Jonssson until more than 10 minutes had expired. Middlebury, however, ended the opening period with a 1-0 lead on a power-play goal by Eva Hendrikson. Jenna Marotta served a pass to Hendrikson at the top of the right circle and her shot found the lower-left corner of the net with 3:46 on the clock.
In the middle period, both teams had a number of good scoring chances. Middlebury goalie Lin Han forced Ashlie Jones's shot wide on a breakaway, while moments later Michaela McNamara's bid at an open net during a delayed penalty misfired. With just over five minutes left in the stanza, Panther forward Madie Leidt fired a shot off the post and 30 seconds later teammate Sidney Portner rang a shot off the pipe from the left circle. The hosts doubled their lead with 1:31 left in the second period, as Jenna Letterie chipped in a centering pass from Leidt.
The Panthers had two chances midway through the third period, as Portner had back-to-back shots from the top of the crease that Jonsson denied. The Gulls countered minutes later on shot from the left wing by Jade Meier that Han snared with her trapper.
Middlebury sealed the victory on an empty-net goal by Letterie with 14 seconds remaining, after Han made a nice kick save on a shot by Lauren Ferraiuolo to preserve the shutout.
Han recorded 19 saves for her second shutout of the season, while Jonsson posted 25 for the Gulls. The hosts held a 28-19 edge in shots and each team had two power-play opportunities, with the Panthers scoring once with the advantage.
Leidt and Katherine Jackson each chipped in with a pair of assists for Middlebury.