Sports cricket

MIT Cricket beats UMass Lowell by six wickets in thrilling last ball encounter

MIT inches past UMass Lowell to achieve their second away win in as many away games

In a Sept. 30 game that had its fair share of twists and turns, MIT emerged victorious thanks to an excellent all-round bowling performance and a half-century by Vaikkunth Mugunthan G.

MIT won the toss and chose to bowl first. UMass Lowell’s openers started off cautiously against Vishrant Tripathi G’s off spin and Nanda Ponnambalam G’s quick seamers; however, they settled themselves in a couple of overs. They had just brought up their half-century opening partnership when it was broken by a toe-crushing yorker from Usman Ayyaz ’17.

Scoring then stalled for a couple of overs, and that brought another wicket to Murthy Arelekatti G, who trapped the batsman plumb in front. Venkat Reddy and Hash Patel, UMass Lowell’s middle order batsmen, then piled up runs and were threatening to post a big score when Ayyaz held on to a fabulous catch at long on to dismiss Reddy.

Wickets then fell at regular intervals thanks to a catch off his own bowling by Akshat Agarwal G, catches by stand-in wicketkeeper Keshav Gupta ’21 and Usman Naseer G, and a couple of runouts. A score that could have easily been in excess of 170 was restricted to 154.

In their attempt to scale down the target, MIT faced an early setback owing to some miscommunication between openers Mugunthan and veteran Koustuban Ravi G that led to both the batsmen ending up at the same end and the vet being run out. Agarwal then joined forces with Mugunthan and put up a 110-run partnership, which included quite a few lovely drives, lofts over the infield, and exquisite cuts.

The target was within sight for MIT when Agarwal decided to retire. Mugunthan reached a well deserved half-century before also being run out. This left MIT with 25 runs to get from three overs, which was achieved with a couple of hits to the fence and plenty of quick singles and doubles between the wickets by Gupta, Ayyaz, and Naseer.

MIT hopes to continue their winning ways as they head to the American College Cricket North-East Regional Championship in Queens, New York next weekend!