MIDDLEBURY, Vermont – Middlebury extended its scoreless streak without allowing a goal as the Panthers topped Lasell 2-0 in an NCAA first-round game on Dragone Field. The Panthers advance to Sunday's regional final at 1:00 p.m., against the winner of the Roger Williams/College of N.J. game played later today. Middlebury improves to 12-3-2 with the victory, while the Lasers finish at 16-5-1.
Lasell had a great chance in the 12th minute with a feed from Meredith Hessler to Jessica Taylor. Middlebury keeper Jocelyn Remmert came out to challenge Taylor, with her shot at on open goal sailing just wide right. Middlebury answered with a look in the 17th minute, with Amy Schlueter crossing to Rachel Madding as her shot went wide.
Middlebury took a 1-0 lead at 29:40, with Julia Favorito scoring her second goal of the season. Lasell keeper Elizabeth Stickley broke up a crossing pass, with her defense attempting to clear the ball. Favorito intercepted a clearing pass and launched a shot into the goal from the top, 20 yards out.
Lasell nearly tied the game with seconds remaining in the first half, but Remmert denied Jamie Harris on a breakaway. The first half ended with the Lasers holding an 8-4 shots advantage, trailing 1-0.
Middlebury came on strong in the second half, taking a 2-0 lead at the 59:12 mark on a penalty kick. Scarlett Kirk centered a pass from the left wing to Rachel Madding, who was tripped in the penalty area, with the free kick being awarded to the Panthers. Kirk blasted a shot into the bottom right corner of the net for her team-leading 14th of the season.
The Panthers threatened again less than a minute later on a corner kick, with Kirk's header being knocked down by Stickley, before Maddy Boston just missed wide on the rebound.
Middlebury kept coming with pressure, but could not add to their lead as they emerged with the 2-0 victory. The Panthers outshot their opponents 8-2 in the second half, 12-10 in the game. Remmert made four saves in the first half, while Elizabeth Foody played the second half without a save. Stickley finished the contest with five stops for Lasell.
The Lasers end their season at 16-5-1 and Middlebury advances to the NCAA Regional Final tomorrow at 1:00 p.m.
--story courtesy of Middlebury Athletics