NESCAC Quarterfinal: No. 5 Colby 48, No. 4 Middlebury 39

NESCAC Quarterfinal: No. 5 Colby 48, No. 4 Middlebury 39

Courtesy of Middlebury Sports Information

MIDDLEBURY, Vt. – Fifth-seeded Colby knocked off fourth-seeded Middlebury 48-39 in a NESCAC Quarterfinal game on Saturday afternoon in Pepin Gym. The Mules (13-11) advance to next weekend's semifinals where they will visit Amherst to take on the host school. Tufts and Bowdoin will meet in the other semifinal game. The Panthers see their record fall to 17-8 with the loss.

Colby led 3-0 before a quick 6-0 spurt gave Middlebury a 6-3 advantage on a three from Sarah Kaufman at the 7:14 mark of the first quarter. With the Panthers up 12-10 with 1:11 remaining, a jumper from Colby's Haley Driscoll tied the game at 12-12 after the first quarter.

A pair of second-quarter free throws with 5:57 left by Colby's Sarah Hancock gave her team an 18-16 lead, before Alex Huffman answered on the other end to knot the contest at 18-18. The Mules went on top during their next trip down the floor when Katie McCrum drained a three to make it a 21-18 game with 5:08 remaining in the second quarter. Both teams went cold for the remainder of the period, leaving the Mules with the 21-18 advantage at the half.

Colby held a slim lead for much of the third quarter, with Middlebury going on top 28-27 on a bucket from Maya Davis at the 3:06 mark. MK Caverly scored late for the Mules to put them up 29-28 with one quarter remaining.

The game was tied for the seventh time in the fourth quarter when Catherine Harrison scored inside to make it a 32-32 game with 7:20 on the clock. Colby followed with a 7-0 run to go up 39-33 on a nice inside move from Emily Davis. A Middlebury free throw ended the run before Caverly drove to her right and converted a three-point play to make it a 42-34 game with 1:24 remaining. Davis answered for the Panthers on the other end, breaking a streak of 10-straight misses from the field for the home team. Middlebury was forced to foul down the stretch, but 4-for-4 free-throw shooting from Caverly put her team up 46-36 with 47 seconds remaining, as the Mules picked up the win.

Middlebury was led in scoring by Harrison, who finished with her seventh double-double of the year with 13 points and 12 rebounds. Kaufman added 10 points, while Colleen Caveney and Davis each chipped in with six. Harrison blocked three shots, while Kaufman picked up three steals.

Caverly led all scorers with 18 points to go along with nine rebounds, while Driscoll scored a dozen for the Mules. Ainsley Burns added seven points, while McCrum finished with three assists.

Middlebury defeated Colby in the regular season, outscoring the Mules 17-2 in overtime for a 64-49 win on February 3.