CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – A 9-3 run that spanned the second and third quarters helped power MIT to a 10-7 victory over Clark University in a Pilgrim Lacrosse League game on Saturday. With the win, the Engineers (8-6, 4-3 Pilgrim) secured a spot in the conference championship tournament for the second year in a row and will continue their season on Wednesday, May 5 at a location to be determined following the conclusion of regular season play. The Cougars closed their campaign with an overall mark of 6-8 and a 2-5 Pilgrim ledger.
Carl Tilbury paced MIT with a game-high four goals while Dan Piemont registered a hat-trick. John Kucharczyk posted one goal and two assists as Corey Garvey and Tom Hay scored once. Garvey added four groundballs to his outing while Alex Andrzejewski contributed four groundballs and an assist. Gabe Blanchet and Nick Sisler both earned an assist as Christopher Rullan tallied 15 saves and three groundballs.
Chris Johnson led the Cougars with three goals followed by a pair from Chris Adams. Phil Winslow notched two assists while Garrett McAdam and Shawn Roche both chipped in a goal. Kyle Klapp totaled three groundballs and one assist as Roche scooped up four groundballs. Matt Fields won 10 of his 16 faceoff attempts and gathered a game-high six groundballs while Andrew DeVito had eight saves and one assist.
An unassisted goal by Kucharczyk put the Engineers on the board three minutes into the contest. Clark won the ensuing faceoff and quickly tallied the equalizer on a strike by Adams that was set up by Klapp. The visitors captured a 2-1 lead with 4:22 on the clock when Winslow found Johnson for a man-up goal.
MIT recorded four goals during the first seven minutes of the second quarter to go ahead for good. Garvey started the scoring run when he redirected a pass from Blanchet just 36 seconds into the period. Hay's solo effort was followed by back-to-back goals from Tilbury the latter assisted by Sisler. Johnson ended the visitor's scoring drought with an unassisted goal at the 4:49 mark. The Engineers countered with a strike by Piemont that put them up 6-3 heading into the intermission.
The Cardinal and Gray carried the momentum into the third quarter as its advantage eventually grew to six (10-4). The opening stages were a defensive battle before MIT mounted a 4-1 spurt that began with 9:44 on the clock. Kucharczyk earned assists on goals by Tilbury and Piemont that were 38 seconds apart as Piemont's came during an extra-man opportunity. Roche connected on a pass from Winslow to bring the Cougars within four (8-4) at 8:33, but Tilbury continued the Engineers' scoring flurry 2:23 later. Piemont gave MIT its largest lead of the day when he converted a feed from Andrzejewski. With less than a minute remaining, DeVito wove through MIT's defense on a clearing attempt and found Adams to make the score, 10-5.
Early in the final period, DeVito turned away a shot by Blanchet and in the pursuit for the loose ball DeVito left the net. Piemont came up with the groundball and momentarily had a shot at the open net, but DeVito quickly scrambled back in to make an acrobatic save. The Cougars immediately sprinted up field with Johnson recording the quick transition goal at 13:00. Clark continued to attack, as it outshot MIT, 15-5, during the quarter, including a six-shot barrage during the next two minutes. The Engineers made several charges at the net, but their attempts were turned away. McAdam narrowed the Cougars' deficit to three (10-7) with 5:29 left to play. Clark maintained the pressure down the stretch, but it would get no closer.