MIDDLEBURY, VT. - Second ranked Middlebury College (6-0-2) defeated the SUNY Potsdam women's hockey team (4-7) 5-1 on Tuesday evening. Freshman forward Kaylee Merrill (Wasilla, Alaska/Anchorage North Stars) scored for the Bears and senior captain Alexa Pfeiffer (Sylvania, N.Y./Little Caesar's) made 41 saves.
The Panthers pressed Potsdam from the get go, outshooting the Bears 17-3 in the opening stanza. Pfeiffer was sharp in her first action of the semester, but Middlebury struck twice in the last 2:56. Ashley McDonald made it 1-0 with a shorthanded goal at 17:04. 1:55 later, Delanie Goniwiecha doubled the lead with an even-strength marker. The Panthers led 2-0 at the first intermission.
Merrill cut the lead in half 2:44 into the second period with an assist from senior forward Miranda Kolb (Watertown, N.Y./SUNY Cortland). However, Goniwiecha regained the two-goal lead for Middlebury at 10:06 with her second tally of the contest. Potsdam created more offensive chances in the second period, but trailed 3-1 after 40 minutes.
The Panthers took advantage of their second power play just 2:03 into the final period. Madie Leidt scored on the man advantage to make it 4-1. Jenna Letterie added another power-play goal at 5:32. Despite some opportunities over the remainder of the game, the Bears couldn't crack Middlebury's defense again.
Anna Goldstein earned the victory for the Panthers with 10 saves and a goal allowed in the first 45:32. Caroline Silk stopped all five shots she faced in the last 14:28.
Potsdam was 0-for-4 on the power play and Middlebury finished 2-for-3.
The Bears are back home on Friday at 3 p.m. with a contest against the University of New England.