MIDDLEBURY, Vt. — For the sixth consecutive year, Middlebury will host the ECAC Division III women’s tournament; the Panthers earned that right with an 8-1 win over Sacred Heart in the ECAC quarterfinals Saturday.
With the win, Middlebury improves its unbeaten streak to 111 ECAC games and ups its winning streak to 75 straight at home.
Middlebury opened the scoring 5:13 into the game as Michelle Labbe’s wrister deflected into the net off a Sacred Heart defender for her 100th career goal.
The Panthers took a 2-0 lead when Nina Kieves backhanded in a rebound from the slot after a shot from Abigail Lamb. Just 1:01 later Erin Neil converted a breakaway after a lead pass from Catherine Elkins. Erin Neil added another goal late in the first frame, tipping home a slapshot by Elkins at 18:49.
Sacred Heart got on the board just nine seconds into the second period when Angela Yuhas scored following a faceoff, but Labbe, Amber Neil and Gabrielle Fonseca added second-period goals to make it a 7-1 game after two periods.
In the third session, Jean Butler added a goal to end the scoring.
Megan Hutchinson made two saves in goal for Middlebury, while Kim Derleth and Taryn Catania combined to make 23 saves for Sacred Heart.
Tourney games will take place at the Kenyon Arena March 3 and 4. Pairings, game times, and ticket information will be available Monday afternoon.