Women's Soccer Wins At Amherst, Headed To NESCAC Semi's

October 28, 2007

Middlebury has advanced to the NESCAC semifinals with a 1-0 win at Amherst. The Panthers visit Williams on Saturday at 11:00 a.m., while Bowdoin plays Tufts at 1:30. The winners meet for the NESCAC Championship at 12:00 on Sunday. The Jeffs end their season at 5-6-4, while Middlebury improves to 9-4-2 on the year.

Amherst came out strong and earned the first corner kick of the game after 12 minutes of action, but a header by junior Stephanie Yesnik that appeared to be traveling to the back of the net was blocked and cleared away by a Middlebury defender.

With 16 minutes and 30 seconds on the clock, Middlebury's Anne Ford received a cross from the corner and sent a one-timer toward the goal, but Amherst keeper Lili Ferguson played the cross perfectly. Middlebury had another close-range shot just three minutes later, but Ferguson was once again in the right place at the right time.

The Jeffs came back with a pair of corner kicks within one minute of each other, but Middlebury goalie Lauryn Torch came up big when she smothered a loose ball to end the flurry of Amherst offense.

The Middlebury offense began a stretch of dominance with 37 minutes remaining in the second half, when an Amherst defender cleared a ball right to Katie Ruymann, who settled herself and ripped a close-range shot, but Ferguson was able to knock the ball out of bounds.

Just three minutes later, Caitlin Parker took the ball along the right wing and then headed toward the goal, setting up a right-footed shot from 20 yards out. Parker placed a beautiful shot just inside the far post to give Middlebury a 1-0 lead with 33:19 remaining in regulation.

The Panthers were relentless for a majority of the second half, as they hit the crossbar twice in a span of two minutes and 10 seconds, while Lindsay Walker put serious pressure on the Amherst defense with a pair of hard shots that forced Ferguson to once again come through for her team.

Ferguson made eight saves in a solid effort for the Jeffs, while Torch stopped a pair of shots to earn the shutout.