CAMBRIDGE, Mass. - The No. 12 ranked MIT men's basketball squad used a terrific shooting performance, knocking down 59.5% of its shots from the field, to overcome visiting Babson College, 67-49, in New England Women's and Men's Conference (NEWMAC) action on Wednesday night. The Engineers made 7-of-10 shots in the second half, including all four from beyond the arc, to improve to 19-2, including 7-1 in NEWMAC play. With the loss, Babson falls to 9-11 on the campaign and 2-6 in the conference.
Noel Hollingsworth led the way for the Cardinal and Gray with 21 points and eight rebounds. Billy Johnson scored nine, as the fifth-year senior moved past the 1,000-point mark for his career with a three-pointer early in the second half. Mitchell Kates added 11 points and six assists for Tech.
After a pair of free-throws by Matt Zoia brought Babson to within three (9-6) five and a half minutes into the game, MIT would respond with a 20-5 run over the next 9:36 to increase the lead to 18. Seven different Engineers would score during the game-changing stretch. Trailing by 16, Babson had a possession at the end of the half with a chance to cut into the MIT advantage. However, Dana Mauro missed a tough jumper and then fouled Billy Johnson on the ensuing rebound, who then sank two at the other end to put Tech up, 39-21, at the break.
The Engineers picked up where they left off early in the second, scoring 11 of the first 13 points in the period, capped by the trifecta that pushed Johnson over the 1,000-point plateau at the 15:02 mark. Babson would not get closer than 20 points the rest of the way until David Stotelmyre's jumper with 25 seconds to go that would provide the final margin.
Tech's shooting performance allowed it to overcome a season-high 26 turnovers, including 19 in the second half. The Engineers also enjoyed a 36-22 advantage on the glass.
Zoia was the high scorer for the Beavers with nine. Tom Lavin added eight points on 3-of-5 shooting.
MIT is off until next Wednesday, February 10, when it continues its three-game homestand against Clark Universtiy. That game is part of a men's and women's double-header, with the women hosting Wheaton at 6:00 p.m. and the men's game following at 8:00 p.m. Babson will travel to Springfield on Saturday, February 6 for a 7:00 p.m. contest.