DANBURY, CT - The Western Connecticut State University women's soccer team will face Middlebury College in the first round of the 2017 NCAA Division III Championships at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology on Saturday, November 11 at 1:30 pm.
The Engineers (18-1-1) and Castleton State University (11-7-2) will battle in the opening game of the first round at 11 am. Winners from Saturday will meet in the second round on Sunday at 1 pm.
The Panthers (11-3-2) will face the Western Connecticut (17-1-2) for the first time in school history. Under second-year head coach Alex Harrison, Western picked up its 10th Little East Conference title to earn its 13th NCAA Tournament bid.
Senior forward Autumn Sorice (Bethel, CT) has enjoyed another outstanding campaign in 2017 and leads the team with 16 goals and nine assists for 41 points. Sorice was named Most Outstanding Player of the LEC Tournament this past Saturday after scoring both goals, including the game-winner in the 108th minute in WestConn's 2-1 victory over cross-state rival Eastern Connecticut State University.
Senior midfielder Andrea Devoe (Farmington, CT) and Aileen Maloney (Trumbull, CT) each have seven goals for the three-time defending LEC champions. Devoe is second behind Sorice with seven assists and 21 total points.
The Western defense has registered nine shut outs on the season. Behind senior keeper Jillian Fernandez (Columbia, CT) is a veteran group of backs headed by Lucy Daniels (Bethel, CT), Jasmine Grey (Naugatuck, CT) and Samantha Carbonell (Berlin, CT). Newcomer Morgan Hartmayer (Ridgefield, CT) rounds out a solid back third for the Colonials.
Fernandez is 14-0-1 in goal for WestConn and has six shut outs. In nearly 1,400 minutes, she has allowed just nine goals for a stingy 0.59 goals-against average. She has made 56 saves for a .862 save percentage.
WestConn's lone loss this season was a 1-0 decision at Farmingdale State on October 18. The Colonials opened the season with 11 straight wins and allowed just one goal over their first eight victories.