March 17, 2009
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – A pair of goals 43 seconds apart with less than five minutes remaining in regulation helped the MIT men’s lacrosse team secure a 9-7 win over Wentworth Institute of Technology on Tuesday. Ryan Ballentine registered a game-high six points on two goals and four assists for the Engineers (1-3). Chris Wesche paced the Leopards (0-1) with a hat-trick as teammate Chris Guilherme tallied two goals and an assist.
Ballentine opened the scoring with an unassisted strike after 2:05 expired in the contest. Over six minutes later, Matt Cox connected on a pass from Joe Harding to put Wentworth on the board. MIT went ahead at the 4:04 mark on a goal by John Kucharczyk that was set up by Ballentine.
Both sides traded goals throughout the second stanza as a solo effort by Guilherme tied the game at four at the break. Wesche found the back of the net twice during the frame while Ballentine notched a goal and an assist.
Wentworth established its first lead of the day when Bill Berringer converted a feed from Guilherme early in the third quarter. The Engineers quickly evened the contest courtesy of a goal by Kucharczyk and then Ernie Park gave the Engineers a 6-5 edge at the 1:01 mark. The Leopards ended their scoring drought with nine seconds on the clock as Guilherme recorded the equalizer.
MIT inched ahead after 2:27 elapsed in the final frame when Park connected on a feed from Neil Zimmerman. Following six minutes of scoreless play, Wesche’s unassisted goal tied the game at seven. With 4:44 left to play, Ballentine set up Corey Garvey for the game-winning goal as Park followed with an insurance tally 43 seconds later.
Park posted the first hat-trick of his career as Zimmerman tallied one goal and two assists. Kucharczyk bolstered MIT’s attack with two goals while Eric Zuk anchored the defense with four groundballs. Ballentine, Garvey, and Patrick Shannon each tacked on three groundballs as Garth Grove collected 10 saves.
In addition to his three-point performance, Guilherme totaled a game-high five groundballs for the Leopards. Jeff Ryan and Bill Ainslie each contributed four groundballs while Sean Tobin amassed 11 saves.
Both squads continue action on Thursday, March 19. MIT wraps up its five-game home-stand against Curry College while Wentworth will travel to Clark University.