Springfield, Mass. -- January 19, 2011 -- Despite a late second-half rally, the Springfield College men's basketball team could not top visiting MIT, as the Engineers held on for a 60-50 win in New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) action on Wednesday evening.
The win brings the Engineers record to 12-5, 2-2 in league action, while the Pride lost its second-league game in a row to drop to 9-7, 2-2.
Darvis Rankins led the Pride with 12 points, while Ryan Coburn added 10 points, eight rebounds, and six blocks. Billy Harkins also posted 10 points, and Matt Cavalieri was limited to just eight points, 10 below his season average, while contributing a game-high nine rebounds.
For the Engineers, Jamie Karraker netted a game-high 17 points as he connected on 6-of-9 shots, including a 5-of-7 performance from downtown. Tim Donegan came off the bench to provide some great minutes for the Engineers, contributing 12 points, six points, and three blocks. Billy Bender chipped in with nine points, six boards, and three helpers as well off the bench.
MIT benefited from strong shooting from behind the arc as it connected on 8-of-16 attempts. For the game, the visitors shot 43.4% (23-53) from the floor. The Pride shot 38.3% for the game (18-47), while both teams had 33 rebounds and 11 turnovers.
A Rankins jumper at the 12:58 mark gave the Pride its largest lead of the first half, as it opened up a five-point cushion at 14-9. However, the lead was short lived as the Engineers posted a 10-4 spurt, capped off by a Karraker trifecta, over the next 3:14 as the visitors snagged a 19-18. Springfield would regain the lead one more time in the half after a Harkins triple at the 5:53 mark, which gave the hosts a 24-23 lead. MIT would use a Eric Zuk lay up as the buzzer sounded to go into the half with a 29-26 lead. The Engineers shared the ball extremely well in the frame, totaling nine assists on their 13 field goals made.
Springfield regained the lead at 33-32 after Rankins got free for a fast-break lay in 2:35 into the second half. From there, the Engineers heated up from behind the arc as they poured on a 13-1 to take a commanding 45-34 lead. MIT used used a pair of triples from Karraker and one from Bender to go along with inside buckets from Mitchell Kates and Donegan to open up the 11-point lead.
The Pride battled back and got within four at 54-50 after a Coburn lay up with 2:04 remaining in regulation. After getting a stop on the ensuing possession, Cavalieri got loose in transition, only to have Will Tashman hustle back on defense make a key block, keeping it a four-point ball game. The deep ball came through for the visitors one last time as Daniel McCue drilled a three with 46 ticks left to put the game away. Kates and Karraker each made a pair from the charity stripe in the final 28 seconds to complete the 10-point victory.
The Pride will hit the road on Saturday afternoon for a critical conference matchup against rival WPI. Tip off is slated for 2:00 pm.
(Photo by Cindi Williamson of Fat Dog Fotos)