Jan. 26, 2008
WORCESTER, Mass. - Junior Jimmy Bartolotta scored a game-high 33 points en route to his fourth 30-point game of the season and MIT pulled away late from NEWMAC rival Clark University, 87-80, on Saturday at the Kneller Athletic Center. Hamidou Soumare added 26 points and a season-high five assists as the Engineers won their third straight.
Trailing 22-21 with 10:26 left in the first half, MIT (12-6, 3-2) powered ahead of the Cougars with a 16-4 run over the next six minutes. Soumare scored seven points during the stretch while Bartolotta, Will Mroz and Billy Johnson connected on shots from behind the arc on three straight possessions.
Clark (9-8, 4-2) refused to let the Engineers pull away, and despite falling behind by 11, rallied to within two mostly behind the strong offensive play of Peter Normandin. Soumare pushed the advantage to 43-39 with a basket just before the half.
Early in the second half, the Engineers increased their lead back to nine but again Clark responded. Taking advantage of an MIT field-goal drought which lasted over six minutes, the Cougars took a 60-58 lead with 11:12 left in the game after a lay-up by Mark Alexander.
The Cardinal and Gray scored six straight points after losing the lead, getting two lay-ups from Baortolotta and one from Bradley Gampel, including a fast-break hoop that started off a monster block by Soumare.
Once MIT moved back in front, it never relinquished the lead. While Clark kept the pressure on the Engineers heading down the stretch, MIT finished 25-of-35 at the free-throw line to seal Tech's first road win in conference play.
Three players scored in double-figures for Clark. Normandin led the Cougars with 26 points on 6-of-11 shooting and a perfect 12-for-12 effort at the charity stripe. Sophomore Mark Alexander added 13 points and senior Pat Landers finished with 12 points and seven boards.
Bartolotta and Soumare provided most of the firepower for the MIT attack, combining for 59 points while no other player reached double figures. Mroz finished 3-of-4 from the floor including 2-of-2 from three-point range to finish with eight points, and Johnson and Daniel McCue each chipped in seven.