September 24, 2012

The ninth-ranked Panther women’s soccer team earned a 1-0 overtime road win at Plattsburgh on Tuesday night. Junior Scarlett Kirk (San Francisco, Calif.) scored the game’s only goal 99:51 into the contest to improve the Panthers to 4-0, while the Cardinals fell to 4-4 with the loss.

Middlebury controlled much of the game, holding a 21-7 shots advantage. The Panthers had numerous great chances to score, but saw Monica D’Ippolito make 11 saves in goal in a stellar performance.

Kirk’s game-winner came as time was winding down in the first overtime, after she took a feed from junior Julia Favorito (Winchester, Mass.) at the 18. Kirk made a quick move inside the box and blasted a shot into the back of the net from the right side 16 yards out.

After an even first half, the Panthers ratcheted up the offensive intensity through the remainder of the game, outshooting the Cardinals 12-3 in the second frame and 5-1 in the deciding overtime segment.

Junior keeper Elizabeth Foody (Ottawa, Ont.) made five saves in net for the Panthers as she and her teammates have not allowed a goal in four games this season.

Middlebury earned a 1-0 victory over Bowdoin on Dragone Field on Saturday. Middlebury held a 6-1 shots advantage in the first half, with neither team able to find the back of the net. Bowdoin threatened late in the first half, but a header from Amanda Kinneston was stopped by Foody.

In the second half, sophomore Moria Sloan (Bethesda, Md.) found Kirk on a crossing pass, with her shot denied by a diving save from Bowdoin keeper Bridget McCarthy.

The game’s only goal came at the 51:41 mark, the first of her career for senior Lucy Wagner (Austin, Texas). The defender launched a shot from near the end line in the right corner, with the ball sailing high over the head of McCarthy and into the back side of the net.

Each team had a few chances in the remainder of the second half, but the Panther defense remained unscored upon this season, securing the 1-0 victory. Foody finished with five saves overall, while McCarthy made four stops for the Polar Bears.

In a battle of two teams ranked in the top 10 nationally, 110 minutes wasn’t enough as Middlebury (5-0-1, 3-0-1) and sixth-ranked Amherst (4-0-1, 2-0-1) battled to a scoreless tie on Dragone Field.

            Middlebury had a great chance in the 10th minute when Kirk’s shot hit the crossbar and the Panthers were unable to capitalize on the rebound. Amherst had a nice opportunity of its own in the 37th minute, when Jessy Hale’s shot on a free kick was denied by a sliding save from Foody.

The second half saw Kirk hit the crossbar again, this time from close range after a feed from senior Rachel Madding (Hillsborough, Calif.) in the 54th minute. Unfortunately for Kirk, the third time wouldn’t be the charm, as she again struck the crossbar with a shot in the 63rd minute of play.

The teams remained scoreless throughout the remainder of regulation, forcing two 10-minute overtime periods. Amherst had a great look in the first overtime as Maggie Belnap’s shot after a free kick was denied by a leaping one-armed save by Foody. The Jeffs against threatened in the second OT, but Foody denied a header from Emily Little on a corner kick.

Middlebury finished with a 17-13 shots advantage, as Foody made nine stops and Holly Burwick earned seven.

• Women’s soccer record: 5-0-1

• Up next: 9/29 @ Wesleyan