CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – MIT used an 8-2 run to close out the first half, breaking open a close game to help the Engineers to a 67-48 victory over Gordon College in men's basketball action tonight in Rockwell Cage. Junior Paul Dawson (Stone Mountain, Ga.) set new personal highs with 17 points and eight assists to lead MIT. Junior Hans Miersma (Whitinsville, Mass.) led the Fighting Scots with 18 points and 13 rebounds.
MIT (2-0) took an early 6-2 advantage three minutes in a on put-back by junior Andrew Acker (Merion Station, Pa.). Gordon (0-3) then held the Engineers scoreless for four minutes and took its first lead of the game when junior James Ek (Saco, Maine) drilled a three pointer at the 14:42 mark to make it 7-6. A layup by Miersma gave the Fighting Scots a three-point lead, but MIT came back with a 7-0 run over the next four minutes, highlighted by a trey from sophomore Russell Johnson (New York, N.Y.) that put the Engineers back in front.
The contest remained close over the next several minutes, but Gordon would never retake the lead. MIT pushed its advantage up to six twice, but each time Gordon came back to shave the lead in half. Miersma cut the Engineers advantage to 23-20 with 2:53 left in the half, but sophomore Justin Pedley (Kennewick, Wash.) answered with a jump shot and MIT finished the half outscoring Gordon 8-2, with Dawson's lay in with two seconds left giving the Engineers a 31-22 lead at the break.
Junior Taylor Bajema (Whitinsville, Mass.) put back a missed shot 30 seconds into the second half to bring Gordon back to within eight, but MIT answered with a run that put the game away early for the Engineers. Dawson drained a three-point shot that started a stretch that saw MIT hit seven of their next nine field goal attempts while holding Gordon to just four shots. The result was a 17-5 run that saw the Engineers expanded their lead to 20 points at 49-29 on a three pointer from junior Dennis Levene (Weston, Conn.) five minutes into the half.
MIT pushed its lead all the way to 25 on a trey from Pedley at the 12:58 mark and the Engineers held their lead over 20 points for the next six minutes. A lay up by Bajema brought the MIT lead back under 20 points at 60-42, but with just 6:46 left the Fighting Scots could not mount a charge as they could get no closer than 16 points the rest of the way.
Acker recorded a double-double for MIT with 12 points and 11 rebounds, with junior Matt Redfield (Los Altos, Calif.) also reaching double figures in the scoring column for the Engineers with 14 points. Bajema also reached double figures for Gordon, finishing with 11 points. MIT shot 47 percent from the floor while holding Gordon to 38 percent shooting. The Engineers also out rebounded the Fighting Scots, 36-31.
MIT will return to action quickly, hosting Bridgewater State on Thursday night at 7 p.m. Gordon will make its home debut for the 2013-14 season in its next outing, hosting Worcester State on Friday night at 7 p.m.