Nov. 14, 2009

Courtesy of Trinity (Conn.)

Collegeville, Penn. - The Trinity College Bantams hung on to beat the Middlebury College Panthers 2-1in the second round of the NCAA Div. III Championship Tournament this afternoon, hosted by Ursinus College at Eleanor Frost Shell Alumnae Field.  The Bantams advance to the NCAA Quarterfinal game, which will be played tomorrow, Sunday, Nov. 14, against Ursinus College (18-2), on their home turf.  The Bantams improve to 16-2 with the win, while the Panthers end their season at 12-5.

Trinity took a 1-0 lead 2:58 into the game after junior Robyn Williams (Bulawayo, Zimbabwe) scored on a corner.  Sixteen minutes later, Williams took a hard shot on goal that sophomore Payson Sword (Princeton, N.J.) managed to misdirect the eventual game-winner into the net for the Bantams second goal.

Middlebury kept within striking distance after Trinity senior co-captain Carrie Wolcott (Hamilton, Mass.) ripped a shot that clanked off the left post with 10 minutes left in the first half, keeping the Bantam lead at 2-0.  Middlebury had opportunities at the end of the half on back-to back penalty corners as Middlebury senior co-captain Mullery Doar (Winnetka, Ill.) and junior Chase Delano (Greenwich, Conn.) made a bid at putting the Panthers on the scoreboard, but sophomore goalkeeper Gina Dinallo (West Hartford, Conn.) and the Trinity defense managed to keep Middlebury out of the net and preserve the 2-0 lead heading into the half.   

Middlebury came out strong in the second half, controlling the majority of the opening fifteen minutes, cutting the lead to 2-1 on a goal from Delano, who deflected a shot by Doar past Dinallo, ten minutes into the final frame.  Senior co-captain Meghan Ryan (Newburyport, Mass.) made a clutch defensive play on a breakaway by first-year Lauren Greer (N. Hampton, N.H.) moments later to preserve the lead for the Bantams.  Dinallo continued her dominance in net, making key stops to keep a surging Middlebury offense from tying the game.  The Bantams defense managed to kill the remainder of the clock, withstanding a strong Middlebury attack in the final two minutes, which including a penalty corner shot with no time on the clock that sailed wide of the net, to send Bantams into the Quarterfinal game.     

Dinallo finished the game with seven saves.  Middlebury goalkeepers, first-year Madeline Brooks (Clayton, Mo.) and sophomore Becca Shaw (S. Burlington, Vt.), shared minutes in net for the Panthers.  Brooks, the starter, allowed two goals and is credited with the loss, while Shaw made two saves and did not allow a goal.  

The Bantams were awarded an at-large bid and a first round bye to the NCAA Tournament after a 15-2 record and a NESCAC Championship finals appearance during the season.  Middlebury also earned an at-large bid after an 11-4 season, and earned a meeting with Trinity in the second round with a 5-1 win over Umass-Dartmouth on Friday.

Trinity advances to the NCAA Quarterfinal game against, tomorrow at 1 p.m. at Ursinus.  The teams are competing for a chance to play in the Semifinal game next weekend in South Hadley, Mass. Tomorrow's game will be updated live via Twitter (http://twitter.com/BantamSports), which can also be found through the Trinity athletics web page.