Engineers Defeat Clark, 13-10; Capture No. 3 Seed for NEWMAC Tournament

An action photo of Gavin Vandenberg facing to the right
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- Score: MIT 13, Clark University 10

- Records: MIT (10-7, 5-2 NEWMAC); Clark (10-7, 5-2 NEWMAC)

- Location: Worcester, Mass. (Granger Field)

- The Lead: A strong first half during which MIT outscored Clark University, 8-3, helped propel it to a 13-10 victory in NEWMAC men's lacrosse action on Saturday night. Sophomore Gavin Vandenberg (Elmhurst, Ill.) racked up three goals, two assists, and four groundballs for the Engineers.


- MIT opened the game with four unanswered goals, including two by Vandenberg. Clark, however, scored twice during the last 46 seconds of the quarter to cut its deficit in half.

- The Cougars carried the momentum into the second stanza as they found the back of the net after 28 seconds elapsed. The Engineers responded with another four-goal run, establishing an 8-3 advantage at halftime. Sophomore Mark Heatzig (Boca Raton, Fla.) kicked off the burst with back-to-back goals while Vandenberg was a factor in MIT's next goals. He scored on a pass from first-year James Santoro (Tewksbury, N.J.) and then set up sophomore Oliver Heins (Fair Haven, N.J.) with 3:51 remaining before the intermission.

- Clark rattled off three consecutive goals following the break, narrowing the gap to 8-6 at the 9:28 mark. Junior Aidan Westley (Palos Verdes, Calif.) scored 1:31 later on a pass from first-year Jack Montinaro (Riverside, Conn.), but the Cougars once again came within two with 3:48 on the clock. Santoro gave the Engineers some breathing room courtesy of a solo strike with 11 seconds left in the frame.

- Westley connected on a pass from Vandenberg almost four minutes into the fourth quarter and then Westley found senior Jake Stein (Vienna, Va.) at the 8:36 mark, increasing the visitors' lead to 12-7. Clark ended its scoring drought three minutes later and tacked on another goal with 4:49 remaining. Heins provided MIT's final goal of the night with 3:06 left to play while the Cougars capped the scoring exactly 58 seconds later.


- Santoro finished with one goal and three assists while Westley posted two goals and two assists. Heatzig registered a hat trick as junior Joe Vasile (Webster, N.Y.) produced four groundballs and two caused turnovers. Junior Jameson Kief (Plantsville, Conn.) generated two caused turnovers while sophomore Luke Gianni (Henderson, Nev.) notched five groundballs and went 10-of-27 on the faceoff "x". In net, first-year Lukas Drexler-Bruce (Denver, Colo.) collected 10 saves.

- MIT led the way in shots (48-39) while Clark ended the night with advantages in groundballs (36-31) and faceoff wins (17-10).

- The Engineers were 15-of-18 during their clearing attempts and were unable to convert their only extra-man opportunity.

- The Cougars were 12-of-20 during their clearing attempts and went 1-of-3 with an extra man.


- As the No. 3 seed in the NEWMAC Tournament, MIT receives a bye during the quarterfinals and will travel to No. 2 Springfield College for a semifinal game on Thursday, May 2.


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