Field hockey narrowly loses NEWMAC championship final

The MIT field hockey team ended it’s exciting run at the New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) championship this Sunday with a 1-0 loss against Babson College. MIT defeated Springfield College last Tuesday with a score of 4-2 to advance to a semifinal game against Smith College on Saturday.

On Saturday, the Engineers got off to an early start against Smith when Emily Penn ’18 successfully converted a penalty stroke just five minutes into the first half. This was Penn’s 20th goal this season, making her the league’s leading scorer. MIT quickly increased the lead six minutes later with a goal by Morgan O’Brien ’17, assisted by Bailey Tregoning ’19.

Early in the second half Smith managed to score, cutting MIT’s lead in half, but their attempt to complete a comeback was quickly nipped in the bud by MIT players Rayna Higuchi ’20 and Bailey Tregoning. Higuchi managed to score off a pass from Tregoning, becoming the third MIT player to score and earning Tregoning another assist.

Smith scored again late in the second half but a strong defensive performance by MIT meant that they were unable to find a final equalizer and MIT won the contest 3-2, earning them a spot in the final championship game the following day. MIT ended up with more shots and shots on goal than Smith. MIT goalie Kate Brewer ’20 tallied 4 saves.

The NEWMAC championship finals took place the next day, Sunday November 6 at Babson College. MIT faced off against top-ranked Babson College in an exciting game. Near the end of the first half Babson took the lead via a penalty corner. Trailing 1-0 after that score, MIT came out strong after halftime and made an offensive run, earning several penalty corners that they were unable to convert. The Engineers stayed in the game and had a last minute push near the end of the second half but were not able to score an equalizer before time ran out.

Even with an outstanding effort by the Engineers, Babson had the advantage for most of the game and beat out MIT in time of posession, shots on goal, and penalty corners. Babson’s defense, led by goalie Deirdre Barry, was rock solid throughout the competition, shutting down MIT’s offense, allowing only 6 shots and 5 penalty corners.

While Babson had the ball for much more of the game, MIT’s defense in front of their own goal handled the pressure well. Goalie Kate Brewer had a good game, making an outstanding save on a penalty corner late in the second half to keep MIT in the game. Katie Notarangelo ’18 and Jane Coffrin ’17, along with Brewer, helped keep the MIT defense strong over the course of the competition, weathering 16 penalty corner attempts and 21 shots from Babson offense, with Brewer finishing with 6 saves.

The MIT Engineers ended their regular season 11-4, and took second place at the NEWMAC championships.