BABSON PARK, Mass.—Junior Joey Flannery (Acton, Mass.) scored 21 points, but Babson College was unable to complete a second-half rally, falling to visiting MIT, 71-66, in New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) men's basketball action on Wednesday night at Staake Gymnasium.
Babson, which saw its 17-game conference winning streak come to an end, is now 10-5 overall and 4-1 in league play, while MIT moves to 12-3 overall and 4-1 in the NEWMAC.
Flannery added six rebounds, three assists and two steals for the Beavers, while junior Isaiah Nelsen (North Andover, Mass.) added 13 points and four boards. Classmate Sam Bohmiller (Franklin, Mass.) chipped in with eight points and fellow junior Matthew Droney (Canton, Mass.) matched his career high with seven assists.
First-year Bradley Jomard (Paris, France) scored 21 points, while senior Ryan Frankel (New York, N.Y.) finished with 19 points and a game-high nine assists to lead the Engineers. First-year Tim Roberts (Martha's Vineyard, Mass.) added a double-double with 11 points and 10 rebounds to go along with four steals in the win.
The Green and White trailed by as many as seven in the opening minutes but ripped off a 9-0 run to take a 15-13 lead on a layup by Flannery with 8:22 left in the opening stanza. MIT responded with 11 straight points though, the final nine coming on a trio of three-pointers as it built a 24-15 advantage at the 5:22 mark. The Beavers twice closed within three, the last time coming at 26-23, but the Engineers outscored the hosts 8-0 over the final 1:51 on took a 34-23 lead into the locker room on a triple at the buzzer by senior Justin Pedley (Kennewick, Wash.).
MIT scored on three of its first four possessions to open the second half and opened its biggest lead of the game at 44-28 on back-to-back treys by Jomard and Pedley with 14:45 to go in the game. Babson finally cut its deficit to single digits on a three-pointer by Flannery, and got as close as 54-47 on a layup by Nelsen with 6:46 to go. Frankel responded with a triple two possessions later to spark a 12-4 burst that gave the Engineers a 66-51 advantage with 2:27 left.
The Beavers still trailed 67-53 with 1:39 left before mounting a furious comeback to make it a one-possession game. Flannery and junior Charlie Rice (Barnstable, Mass.) each knocked down a trey around a jumper by first-year Tyler Colon (Palos Verdes Peninsula, Calif.), and Flannery connected on a pair of free throws to make it 67-63 with 50 seconds left. Babson forced its third turnover in less than a minute and closed within 67-64 on a foul shot from Colon, but Frankel followed with a pair at the line to push the MIT lead back to five with 25 seconds remaining.
Both teams return to action on Saturday as MIT faces Emerson at 2 p.m., while Babson hosts Coast Guard at 3 p.m.
• Babson, which is 49-20 all-time against MIT, had won five straight in the series prior to Wednesday's loss.
• The Beavers attempted a season-low 52 field goals, and shot 44.2 percent overall and just 38.9 percent from beyond the arc (7-of-18).
• The Green and White is just 5-5 this season when shooting under 50 percent.
• Flannery, who finished 5-of-12 from the floor on the night, is now tied with John Wickey '15 for ninth place in school history with 519 made field goals.