Women's Lacrosse Headed To NCAA Regional At Trinity

May 12, 2011

The Middlebury College women's lacrosse team is in the midst of its 17th NCAA Tournament appearance in the last 18 years. The Panthers will take part in an NCAA Regional at Trinity on Saturday, where they will play the host school at 11:30 a.m. The winner advances to the regional final (quarterfinals) on Sunday at 1:00 p.m.

Middlebury advanced to the regionals after a 14-7 first-round win at home over Ithaca on Wednesday. Stephanie Gill scored five goals in the win, while Sally Ryan added a pair in the victory. The Panthers broke open a 7-5 halftime lead by outscoring its opponent 7-2 in the second half.

The Panthers are 38-11 in NCAA play since they first qualified for the tourney in ’94. Their .776 NCAA winning percentage is higher than all but one team (TCNJ) in the history of Division III lacrosse.

Middlebury has won NCAA titles in ’97, ’99, ‘01, ’02 and ’04, advancing to the final four every year from ’94-’07 (14 years). Head coach Missy Foote is in her 31st season at the helm of the program, sporting a career record of 361-95-1. Her .791 winning percentage is second all-time among her peers.

Middlebury’s season was in jeopardy after being eliminated in the quarterfinals of the NESCAC Tournament. The Panthers boasted a solid resume, including nine games against teams ranked in the top 17 this season, earning an NCAA at-large bid. Middlebury opened the season 6-0 with wins over #9 Stevens and #11 Catholic. The Panthers then dropped four of five games, falling against teams who were ranked 8, 3, 17 and 3 nationally at the time. Middlebury got back on track with three wins to end the regular season, including a 10-9 victory at #13 Tufts.

Middlebury’s offense is ranked fourth in the NESCAC this season with 12.7 goals/game, while the defense is sixth with a 9.56 average. Senior Sally Ryan leads the team and NESCAC in goals this season with 57 (3.6 gpg). Her team-high 71 points place her third in the league (4.44 ppg), while she also owns 14 assists. She paces the team in ground balls with 37, draw controls (37), while leading the NESCAC with 2.1 caused turnovers and 7.2 shots/game.

Sophomore Ellen Halle (25-16-41), sophomore Margaret Souther (21-8-29), junior Elizabeth Garry (22-3-25) and senior Chase Delano (15-10-25) round out the team’s leading scorers. In goal, junior Lily Nguyen is 9-4 with a 9.27 GAA and a .513 SV%.

Trinity was the only team to draw a bye in the tourney, owning a 17-0 record. The two teams met back on April 16th, with the Bantams holding on for an 11-10 win in Middlebury. The Panthers lead the all-time series 19-9 with 19 consecutive wins prior to losses in ’10 and ’11.

2011 NCAA Division III Women’s Lacrosse Tournament
Wednesday, May 11th
Middlebury 14, Ithaca 7
Stevens 13, Bridgewater 5
Bowdoin 16, Babson 5

Saturday, May 14thNCAA Regional - Trinity College
Middlebury (11-5) @ Trinity (17-0) – 11:30
Stevens (16-3) vs. Bowdoin (15-3) – 2:30

Sunday, May 15th – NCAA Regional - Trinity College
Regional Final – 1:00 p.m.