Cambridge, Mass. - February 27, 2010 - The Springfield College men's basketball team's season came to a close on Saturday afternoon as it dropped a 73-50 decision to rival WPI in the semifinals of the New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) Tournament at MIT.
The Pride, which was seeded second in to the tournament, ends it season with a final record of 14-13.
Classmates Kyle Nadeau and Jeffrey Robinson combined for 42 points to propel No. 3 seed WPI to the victory over No. 2 seed Springfield.
With the win, the Engineers advance to their fifth NEWMAC Championship game in their last six years, and will play No. 5 seeded Clark University, a surprise 71-59 winner over top-seeded host MIT in the day's first semifinal.
SC and WPI were evenly matched for the start of the first half in which the score was tied five times, including a 12-12 deadlock at the midpoint. From there, the Engineers began to pull away and secured a 31-20 lead at the intermission.
Leading by eight points, early in the second half, WPI embarked upon a 12-2 run to take a 50-32 advantage midway through the stanza. The Pride was able to whittle the lead back to 10 at 52-42, only to see WPI score seven straight to secure the win.
Nadeau established new career highs with 22 points and six three-pointers to lead all scorers. Robinson filled the stat-sheets with 20 points, a career-best nine rebounds, three assists and two steals.
WPI got an unexpected boost from its bench, as six different reserves scored, including five points and three rebounds from Joseph Wesoloski.
The Crimson and Gray out-rebounded the Pride by a 43-30 margin, and in the process, enjoyed a 30-22 advantage in points in the paint.
Matt Cavalieri (West Warwick, R.I.) paced Springfield with 19 points, canning 13 of 15 free throws from the line. The junior also led the Pride with nine boards and three blocks. Ryan Colburn (West Warwick, R.I.) chipped in with three blocks and senior Pat Crean (Sleepy Hollow, N.Y.) tossed in six points.
Springfield, which made just five first-half field goals and was held to 29.2% shooting performance from the floor, saw its season come to an end with a record of 14-13.
WPI improved to 20-6 on the campaign.
WPI and Clark, cross-town Worcester rivals, have captured five of the last 11 NEWMAC men's basketball titles, but have never met each other in a championship match.