October 12, 2009

The Middlebury College women's soccer team suffered its first loss of the season as the 15th ranked Panthers fell at #19 Amherst by a score of 6-1 on Hitchcock Field in Amherst, Mass. The Lord Jeffs improve to 6-2 (4-1 NESCAC) with the conference win, while Middlebury drops to 7-1 (5-1) with its first loss of the season.

While the loss was just the first of the season for the Panthers, it was also a stark contrast to the rest of Middlebury's results after opening the season with a school-record 7-0 mark, and allowing just two goals in seven games. Middlebury had shutout its last four opponents, and snapped a defensive scoreless streak of 492:34 with Amherst's first goal in the 31st minute.

That first goal came off the boot of Livia Rizzo on an unassisted score. After a long free kick ended in a bouncing ball in a crowd, Rizzo scored on a long strike from outside the 18-yard box. Amherst took a 2-0 lead just 78 seconds later, when Jackie Hirsch found Emily Little with a cross for a slotted shot past Panther junior goalie Lauryn Torch (Bronxville, N.Y.).

Amherst defender Jill Kochanek scored the first of her two goals on the day in the 48th minute off a Maureen Griffen corner kick. Amherst's Hannah Cooper finished off an assist from Little at the 52:25 mark, before Kochanek scored her second goal less than two minutes later off a feed from Meg Murphy.

The final Lord Jeff goal may have been the best of the day, as Kyla Woodhouse scored on a Griffen corner in the 65th minute. Woodhouse trapped the ball at the far post, cut back inside, and slammed a hard shot off the post with her left foot to put Amherst up 6-0.

Middlebury grabbed one goal back in the 73rd minute as senior Anne Ford (Dexter, Mich.) found classmate Lindsay Walker (Ridgewood, N.J.) on a corner kick for a well-placed shot to the bottom left corner.

Amherst goalies Allie Horwitz and Claire Bennett combined to make 10 saves, while Torch finished the game with seven stops for Middlebury.
. Women's soccer record: 7-1
. Up next: 10/14 @ Keene State - 6:30, 10/17 vs. Conn. College - 11:00