MIDDLEBURY, Vt. -- The Bates field hockey team saw their four-game winning streak come to an end Saturday afternoon in a 3-0 road loss to No. 5 nationally ranked and defending national champion Middlebury.
The Panthers (11-3, 6-3 NESCAC) and Bobcats (8-6, 3-6 NESCAC) battled in rainy conditions at Kohn Field.
Bates had the first scoring opportunity of the game. In the fourth minute of action, sophomore Taylor Lough (Little Compton, R.I.) fired a nice shot on goal that forced Middlebury keeper Emily Miller to make a really good kick save, keeping the contest scoreless.
Then in the seventh minute, the Panthers struck to take the early lead. Emma Johns carried the ball up the field and delivered a perfect feed to a wide open Grace Jennings. Jennings was able to beat the keeper for her fourth goal of the year, putting Middlebury up 1-0.
In the 12th minute, Jennings showed off her passing ability. She delivered an excellent cross from the left side of the cage to Lauren Schweppe. Schweppe was able to dive and knock it in to extend the Panthers' lead to 2-0.
The Bobcats' next good scoring opportunity came near the end of the first half. It appeared that sophomore Adah Lindquist (Wayne, Pas.) had scored a goal while diving to the ground but an offside call got the score waved off.
Down 2-0 at halftime, the Bobcats came out firing in the second half, taking the first three shots. But each time, Miller was up to the task in the cage. She finished with five saves to earn the shutout.
In the 48th minute, the Panthers earned a penalty corner. Johns delivered a pass to Jennings. She teed it up and Schweppe blasted it home for her second goal of the game and her 10th of the season.
Despite the 3-0 final score, each team only recorded eight shots on the afternoon. Bates out-shot the Panthers 6-3 in the second half. Lough and sophomore Jessie Moriarty (Springfield, Mass.) each recorded three shots on goal.
The Bobcats conclude their regular season on Wednesday when they welcome Colby to town for a 7:00 p.m. game on Campus Avenue Field.