March 20, 2014

Engineers Defeat Gordon, 12-9

WENHAM, Mass. – The MIT men's lacrosse team outscored Gordon College, 9-5, during the second and third quarters en route to a 12-9 victory on Thursday night. Freshman Harris Stolzenberg (Weston, Fla.) produced a game-high five points on four goals and one assist to go along with three groundballs for the Engineers (3-2).

The Fighting Scots opened the scoring after 1:13 elapsed but MIT sophomore Chris McPherson (Gaithersburg, Md.) replied with a man-down score at the 10:57 mark. A defensive battle ensued as the score remained unchanged for the rest of the first quarter.

Stolzenberg ended the stalemate courtesy of a man-up marker to give MIT a 2-1 lead after 53 seconds expired in the second stanza. Gordon quickly evened the frame; however, the Engineers produced back-to-back goals to go up 4-2 with 11:14 on the clock. Stolzenberg was a factor in both tallies as he converted a feed from junior John Kramer (Glastonbury, Conn.) before setting up freshman Michael Traub (Aliso Viejo, Calif.). In a span of 2:17, Gordon generated a pair of goals to tie the game for the second time. MIT responded with three straight goals to enter the intermission with a 7-4 advantage. Junior Chris Cook (Tully, N.Y.) started the run at the 7:33 mark while sophomore Luke Verdi (Middletown, Md.) increased the cushion with 2:12 remaining. A man-up score by Stolzenberg that was initiated by sophomore Jonah Hessels (Laytonsville, Md.) capped off the rally.

Gordon ended its scoring drought with a pair of strikes during the first 4:27 of the third quarter to close the gap to 7-6. The Cardinal and Gray countered with another three-goal spurt to gain some breathing room midway through the period. Cook once again sparked the scoring spree with an unassisted marker at the 8:52 mark which was followed by senior Britt Cyr (Cincinnati, Ohio) finding McPherson exactly 45 seconds later. Traub then gave MIT a 10-6 lead after redirecting a pass from Verdi with 7:06 on the clock.

The game became a back-and-forth affair until the Fighting Scots found the back of the net at 13:46 of the final frame. A defensive battle resumed before both squads scored twice during the last 5:23 of regulation. A solo effort by sophomore Paul Orrson (Baltimore, Md.) reestablished the Engineers' four-goal cushion but Gordon continued to attack, eventually coming within three (11-8) with just under four minutes to go. A turnover by the hosts off the ensuing faceoff allowed MIT to manage the clock before Stolzenberg registered his third extra-man goal of the day with 34.9 remaining. The Fighting Scots then wrapped up the scoring six seconds after winning the faceoff.

Cyr paced the Engineers with four groundballs as senior Tim Wilczynski (Old Lyme, Conn.) gathered three of his own. Freshman Cody Jacobucci (Woodstown, N.J.) went 6-of-10 in faceoffs while Kramer recorded three caused turnovers and two groundballs. Verdi chipped in three groundballs as sophomore goalie Eric Bartell (San Diego, Calif.) racked up 17 saves and three groundballs.

Next up for MIT will be the program's first meeting with Amherst College since 1990, which will occur on Saturday, March 22 in Clearwater, Fla.