|Middlebury won its season opener against Stevens Institute 7-5 at Kohn Field. The game which featured the #5 ranked Panthers against the #8 Ducks was also the coaching debut for Middlebury’s Dave Campbell. The Panthers return to action and begin NESCAC play as they host Campbell’s former team Conn. College on Saturday afternoon.|
Nick Bastis netted his second goal of the game for the Panthers to break a 2-2 tie late in the first quarter. Middlebury tacked on two more goals, including an impressive 25-yard shot by defenseman James Guay with only 34 seconds remaining in the third quarter, to build a 5-2 advantage.
Trailing by three goals to begin the fourth quarter, Stevens Institute would rally to tie the game at 5-5. At the 10:41 mark Matt Althauser scored his first of his back-to-back goals off a nice feed from Stephen Pascone. Althauser tallied his second rolling to his left as his score cut the Panther lead to 5-4 with 7:58 remaining in the game. Exactly one minute later Matt Keating netted the equalizer as he scored from 10 yards out.
With less than six minutes to go, Middlebury’s Tom Petty collected a ground ball and raced in for a shot that got past the Ducks’ goalie giving the Panthers a 6-5 advantage with 5:45 remaining. Over the next several minutes, Middlebury controlled the ball. When the Ducks decided to use their goalie to pressure the Panthers, Peter Mellen scored an empty net goal with 42 seconds remaining for the final score 7-5.
Bastis led Middlebury with two goals as six other Panthers scored one each, while the Ducks’ Althauser collected two scores.