Babson Surges Past MIT in NEWMAC Semifinals

BABSON PARK, Mass.-Junior Alex Bunick (Millis, Mass.) and first-year Matthew Logan (Downingtown, Pa.) each scored twice while junior Christian Cattaruzza (Guilford, Conn.) caused a career-high seven turnovers as second-seeded Babson defeated third-seeded MIT, 10-6, in a NEWMAC semifinal at rainy and cold MacDowell Field on Wednesday night.

With its ninth win in the last 10 games, Babson (11-6) advances to the conference title game for the third time in the last four seasons. MIT sees its season come to an end at 9-8.

Senior Alex Packer (Hudson, Ohio) had a goal and two assists while sophomore Scott Doten (Western Springs, Ill.) scored once and added an assist for the Beavers. Cattaruzza also led all players with seven groundballs on the night.

Sophomore Graham Francis (Palos Verdes Estates, Calif.) scored twice and first-year Harris Stolzenberg (Weston, Fla.) contributed a goal and two assists for the Engineers. Senior Britt Cry (Cincinnati, Ohio) won 10 of 17 face-offs and collected a team-high six groundballs.

Babson was on the attack early, peppering MIT sophomore goalie Eric Bartell (San Diego, Calif.) with 12 first-quarter shots. The Beavers got on the board first when sophomore Spencer Low (Natick, Mass.) scored off the rebound of a shot by Packer with 11:19 left in the first period for a 1-0 edge. Sophomore Brendan Coan (Towson, Md.) then extended the Green and White's lead to 2-0 with 2:55 left in the first when he converted his interception of a Bartell pass.

Babson continued to control possession for most of the second period but Bartell kept the Engineers within striking distance. He made back-to-back stops on Packer and sophomore John Harrison (Pembroke, Mass.)which helped the Engineers cut the deficit in half on a transition tally by sophomore Luke Verdi (Middletown, Md.) with 7:26 left in the second quarter. Babson responded to the goal just three minutes later as Doten converted a feed from Packer to regain a two-goal edge at the 4:25 mark.

The Beavers maintained a 3-1 edge at the break as Verdi hit the post with 55 seconds left in the quarter before Daroff stymied a Stolzenberg attempt on an extra-man opportunity just 16 seconds from halftime. The Green and White held a 13-3 advantage in shots during the period and forced MIT into 15 first-half turnovers.

The Engineers had their best offensive flurry of the night in the opening moments of the second half as Francis scored at the 11:36 mark, and Stolzenberg struck for his 39th goal of the year on a two-man advantage to tie the game at 3-3 with 10:34 left in the third quarter. The Beavers responded though, as Logan notched his first marker of the game with 7:36 to go in the period and Packer followed with his 13th tally of the year, converting a feed from Harrison, just 32 seconds later to make it 5-3.

MIT first-year Henry Merrow (Hopkinton, N.H.) cut the deficit to one just 1:36 into the fourth, but Babson followed with four goals in a 2:49 span to put the game away. Bunick got his first of the night following an Engineers turnover with 12:54 left and sophomore John Obadia (Port Washington, N.Y.) made it 7-4 with a man-up goal just 42 seconds later.

Logan struck for his second tally of the night, again after a turnover, with 10:46 remaining and Bunick converted a feed from Doten for his team-leading fifth man-up goal of the year less than a minute later to give the Green and White its biggest lead of the night at 9-4 with 10:05 to go.

Verdi and first-year Michael Traub (Aliso Viejo, Calif.) scored back-to-back goals to get MIT back within 9-6 at the 3:07 mark, but Babson sophomore Alex Youngwall (Huntington, N.Y.) capped the scoring with his 11th tally of the year with 47 seconds remaining for the final margin.

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