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WATERVILLE, Maine — Despite 56 saves from Colby College goaltender Brianne Wheeler (Brussels, Ontario), Middlebury College made the 59th shot count in overtime as Maggie Melberg (Woody Creek, Colo.) scored 1:57 into the extra period as the Panthers took a 3-2 season-opening win over the Mules on Friday night at Alfond Rink.

Wheeler made 38 saves in the first two periods and then stopped 16 shots in the final period. 

Wheeler had stopped the original shot from the Panthers, but Melberg was on the right side of the goal and hit another shot that Wheeler got a glove on. The puck hit off her and trickled over the goal line.

Colby (0-1 overall, 0-1 NESCAC) scored first in the opening period when Meredith Reynolds (Marion, Mass.) converted off a pass from defender Kathy Shei (Iverness, Ill.) at 11:15. However, the Panthers tied it up just over a minute later when Heather Marrison (Brewster, N.Y.) scored at 12:25 off an assist from Hannah Bielawski (Evanston, Ill.).

The Panthers (1-0, 1-0 NESCAC) were on the power play to start the second period and quickly scored 32 seconds in off a score from Sara Ugalde (Burlington, Conn.) from Jennifer Krakower (Montreal, Quebec).

Annie Papadellis (Hopkinton, Mass.) tallied 4:28 into the third period for Colby to knot the game at 2-2. First-year Jackie Tavella (East Longmeadow, Mass.) had her first career assist.

Middlebury 3, Colby 2

Middlebury 1#1#0#1—3

Colby         1#0#1#0—2

1st periodC: Meredith Reynolds (Kathy Shei), 11:15M: Heather Marrison (Hannah Bielawski), 12:252nd periodM: Sara Ugalde (Jennifer Krakower), :32, PP3rd periodC: Annie Papadellis (Jackie Tavella), 4:28OvertimeM: Maggie Melberg (Heather Marrison), 1:57 Shots: Middlebury 59, Colby 17. Goalies: Laura Pinsent (Middlebury, 61:57, 2 GA, 15 saves); Brianne Wheeler (Colby, 61:57, 3 GA, 56 saves).