Comeback Bid Falls Short as Babson Holds off MIT, 12-11, in NEWMAC Men’s Lacrosse Semifinal

Senior Jonah Hessels
Senior Jonah Hessels

BABSON PARK, Mass. – Despite conceding eight unanswered goals, MIT battled back to come within one on two occasions late in regulation but it could not overcome the deficit as Babson College held on for a 12-11 win in the semifinals of the NEWMAC Men's Lacrosse Tournament on Wednesday night. For the second year in a row the No. 3 seeded Engineers ended the season with a 12-5 ledger, tying the Institute record for wins in a season.

Junior Harris Stolzenberg (Weston, Fla.) totaled two goals and two assists, eclipsing the MIT mark of 188 career points set by Matt Van Horne '02. Senior Jonah Hessels (Laytonsville, Md.) racked up four goals while sophomore Graham Davis (Crofton, Md.) posted one goal and two assists. Sophomore David Klee (East Greenbush, N.Y.) tallied seven groundballs and four caused turnovers while classmate Christian Jamison (Huntington, N.Y.) gathered six groundballs, followed by five from senior Luke Verdi (Middletown, Md.). Senior goalie Eric Bartell (San Diego, Calif.) came up with 10 saves and five groundballs as freshman Mitchell Galer (Westlake Village, Calif.) won 12 of his 25 faceoff attempts.

MIT opened the scoring after 46 seconds expired when Stolzenberg connected on a pass from junior Michael Traub (Aliso Viejo, Calif.). Just over three minutes later No. 2 Babson kicked off its 8-0 run that ended at the 12:53 mark of the second quarter. Senior Paul Orrson (Baltimore, Md.) ended the Engineers' scoring drought in the next 1:21 while a Stolzenberg man-up strike with 1:55 to go made the score, 8-3, at halftime.

The Beavers put together a 3-1 spurt, reestablishing their seven-goal margin midway through the third quarter. MIT responded with a pair of goals by Hessels that sandwiched a blast from Verdi, narrowing the gap to 11-7 at the end of the frame.

Hessels completed the hat trick at the 10:30 mark of the final frame while Davis was a factor in the Engineers' next two goals that brought them within 11-10 with 5:49 remaining. Davis first found sophomore Mitch Turley (Westfield, Ind.) and then recorded an unassisted marker. The hosts created some breathing room with 2:31 on the clock but Hessels connected on a pass from Davis with 1:03 left to play. Babson won the ensuing faceoff and retained possession down the stretch to secure the victory.