- Records: No. 9 MIT (15-2, 5-1 NEWMAC); Babson (9-8, 4-2 NEWMAC)
- Score: No. 9 MIT 80, Babson 78 (OT)
- Location: Babson Park, Mass. (Staake Gymnasium)
- The Lead: In a thriller at Staake Gymnasium, the No. 9 ranked MIT men's basketball team rallied from a 10-point second half deficit to defeat Babson College by an 80-78 final in New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) action on Saturday afternoon. This is the second straight win for the Engineers over the Beavers, including last year's NEWMAC Championship Game.
HOW IT HAPPENED:
- In the opening half, Babson staked to a 17-9 lead with 13:24 on the clock after a pair of free throws by Shyheim Ulrickson before the Engineers ended the Beavers run on a dunk from junior Bradley Jomard (Paris, France) moments later. A three from freshman Hamilton Forsythe (Weston, Conn.) eventually pulled the visitors within one at 19-18 before Babson asserted control and took a 41-36 advantage into the halftime break. Brandon Johnson scored on a layup off a turnover late in the period for Babson, followed by a Jomard layup at the buzzer for the five-point halftime margin.
- In the second, the Beavers pushed the pace from the start and with 13:21 remaining, Johnson dropped in a three for Babson that put the hosts up double digits for the first time at 54-44. The Beavers continued to lead at 57-49 after three by Nick Comenale at the 11:32 mark before a quick 7-0 burst that was capped by a Forsythe three pulled the Engineers within a point at 57-56 with just under 10 minutes left.
- MIT took its first lead of the second half with 6:27 left on a runner from Jomard to go out in front 63-62 and the teams traded the lead. After the Beavers briefly took a 67-65 on a corner three that forced an MIT timeout, the Engineers regained the edge on a corner three of their own from junior Cameron Korb (Los Gatos, Calif.) with 3:52 on the clock for the 68-67 advantage.
- Babson led by four with 2:39 left after a pair of Bradley Jacks free throws made it a 72-68 before a putback by sophomore Nacho Nwana (White Plains, N.Y.) and a Jomard layup tied the game at 72-72. The Engineers tried for the win at the buzzer in regulation, but that shot was just off as the teams headed to the extra period.
- Babson's Johnson scored on an early dunk in overtime to put the Beavers back in front before Korb drilled a triple put MIT ahead and the engineers eventually extended the edge to 80-75 with 2:03 left following a three by Dakota Pierce (Thousand Oaks, Calif.).
- For Babson, Johnson scored on a scoop shot with 1:32 left, followed by one free throw at 1:06 to cut the MIT edge to just 80-78. After an MIT shot clock violation and a missed free throw late, Babson called timeout with 4.7 seconds left and had one more shot to win. A three-pointer from Jacks at the buzzer was wide though as the Engineers picked up the two-point win to maintain a hold on first place in the NEWMAC standings.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS:
- Forsythe led all scorers with 25 points for MIT before fouling out with 6:04 left in the game as he added five rebounds and was 7-for-12 from three. Jomard finished with a 22-point, 11-assist double-double that included eight rebounds, while junior AJ Jurko (Weston, Fla.) had 10 points and four rebounds.
- For Babson, Johnson led four Beaver starters in double figures with 20 points on 7-for-11 shooting. Comenale posted 16 points, with 14 points from Ulrickson and 13 from Jacks.
- MIT forced 14 Babson turnovers, while the Engineers held a 34-27 rebounding advantage and knocked down 12-of-27 three-point attempts.
- The No. 9 ranking the highest for the Engineers since week 1 of the 2012-2013 season, when MIT was ranked No. 1 in the nation.
- MIT returns to action on Wednesday, January 24th as the Engineers host Clark University for a 7 p.m. start at Rockwell Cage.