April 1, 2013

Fourth-ranked Middlebury College broke a nine-all tie with a three-goal run midway through the second half to help propel the Panthers to a 14-11 victory over No. 5 Gettysburg in women’s lacrosse action at Clark Field on Tuesday.

Senior Ellen Halle (Upperco, Md.) led Middlebury (5-0) with five goals and one assist. Senior Margaret Souther (Scarsdale, N.Y.) posted two goals and two assists, while junior Alyssa Palomba (Shrewsbury, Mass.) posted nine saves, four ground balls, and three caused turnovers.

Loren Pruitt turned in four goals and dished out an assist for Gettysburg (7-1), which suffered its first loss of the season. Kelsey Markiewicz added three goals, while Lindsey Robinson posted one goal and three assists.

Trailing by three late in the first half, Gettysburg made a run with four of the next five goals. Back-to-back goals by sophomore Bridget Kenny and Markiewicz set the score at 8-7 heading into the break.

Senior Michaela Colbert (Topsfield, Mass.) put the visitors in front by two with a goal to start the final stanza, but the Bullets posted the next two tallies to tie the game. Robinson had a helping hand in both with assists to Pruitt and Markiewicz to set the score at 9-9 with 22:02 to play.

Gettysburg was unable to get off a shot to regain the lead as the hosts turned the ball over on each of their next three possessions. Middlebury used the miscues to its advantage with three consecutive goals, beginning with a free-position tally by senior Alice Pfeifer (Chevy Chase, Md.) at 20:38.

After a goal by first-year player Laurel Pascal (Greenwich, Conn.) at 17:14, Souther tossed in the eventual game-winning goal at 14:05 to cap the run. Gettysburg picked up a pair of goals by Pruitt, but each tally was answered in kind by Halle to keep the three-goal margin.

Gettysburg came out firing in the early going with four of the first five goals. Robinson’s only goal would give the hosts a 4-1 lead at 17:22.

The Panthers ran off seven of the next eight goals to jump in front 8-5 with 7:09 left in the opening frame. Halle started the run 15 seconds after Robinson’s goal and accounted for two more goals and an assist during the stretch, 

Middlebury held the advantage in shots (29-25), ground balls (27-20), and draw controls (14-13). Gettysburg committed a season-high 21 turnovers in the loss.

Middlebury won its second game in as many days,  as the fourth-ranked Panthers earned a 16-5 win at Stevens. Souther scored three goals to lead the Panthers, bringing her career total to 100.

Middlebury allowed just 11 shots in the game, scoring eight straight goals through the middle of the contest. Senior Emma Kramer (Riverside, Conn.) scored two goals early to put her team up 4-1 at the 23:14 mark. Stevens scored two of the next four before junior Liza Herzog (Baltimore, Md.) answered with two straight to put the Panthers up 8-3. Rookie Chrissy Ritter (Middlebury, Vt.) netted the final tally of the half to give Middlebury a 9-3 lead at the intermission.

The Panthers opened the second half with five straight goals to put the game out of reach at 14-3 with 18:25 remaining. Five different players scored during the run before Joey Galligan ended the streak with a Stevens goal at the 15:51 mark. The teams exchanged the final three goals for a 16-5 Panther win.

Herzog aided Souther’s effort with three goals of her own, with two coming from Kramer and C. Ritter. Herzog added four draw controls, sophomore Catherine Fowler (Grosse Pointe, Mich.) earned three, while Colbert picked up four ground balls. Palomba earned five saves with one goal allowed in 49:50, while rookie Katie Mandigo (Cornwall, Vt.) made one save and allowed a goal in 10:10 of play during her collegiate debut.

Halle scored five goals and added three assists to lift Middlebury to a 15-10 win over Bowdoin in a battle of top-ten squads at Ryan Field.

Halle sparked the Panther offense with her game-high eight points and scored twice on free-position shots in the win. Kramer scored three goals while Souther and Colbert had two apiece for Middlebury. Bowdoin was led by three goals from both Mackenzie Schleicher and Jordan Smith. Carolyn Gorajek had two goals and two assists for the Polar Bears, who also received 13 saves from Tara Connolly.

The Panthers jumped ahead early, as five different players scored in the opening 10:35 as the visitors stormed to a 6-2 advantage. Kramer opened the scoring and capped the run for Middlebury. The game settled into a back-and-forth affair after that, with the teams trading goals over the final 10:33 of the period. Gorajek's first goal of the afternoon for Bowdoin made it a 9-5 Panther lead at halftime.

After Halle opened the second frame with a goal at 25:36, Bowdoin responded with a 3-1 surge over the next three minutes, trimming the Panther lead to 11-8 with 22:06 to go on Gorajek's second tally of the day. Bowdoin had a sustained possession immediately following, and had several chances to cut into the lead further, but the Middlebury defense locked down the Polar Bears to maintain the three-goal advantage.

Kramer and Halle answered with goals for the Panthers at 14:19 and 11:13, respectively, to push the advantage back to five goals and help seal the win.

Palomba made four saves in goal for Middlebury, who got six draw controls from Herzog. Souther had three ground balls and two caused turnovers for the Panthers while junior Hannah Deoul (Stevenson, Md.) added two caused turnovers and two ground balls defensively.

• Women’s lacrosse record: 7-0

• Up next: 4/3 @ Hamilton, 4/6 vs. Amherst – 1:30, 4/7 vs.  Tufts – 1:00