Cambridge, MA --- MIT senior Austin Freel (San Diego, CA) headed home the game winning goal just 4:08 into the overtime session as the Engineers topped WPI, 2-1, in New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) action on Saturday afternoon at Steinbrenner Stadium on senior night and both teams regular season finales.
Engineer's junior Kareem Itani (Dallas, TX) set up the game winner when he sent a long cross from the far side of the field aimed to the inner portion of the six yard box. Freel's head connected with the ball first as it sailed into the upper left corner of the net sending MIT home happy with the 2-1 win.
Tonight's contest was a battle of the midfield as neither team was able to find the back of the net until the 84th minute. Joe Schuman (West Hartford, CT) and fired his first shot towards WPI sophomore goalkeeper Jordan Finzel (Northport, NY), but it was deflected by visitors back line. He then gathered his own rebound and beat Finzel in the lower corner after a scramble for the ball in front of the net, putting the home standing Engineers on the board first, 1-0, late in the game.
The Cardinal and Gray thought the game was over, but WPI was awarded a corner kick with just nine seconds to play in regulation. Sophomore Ryan Stokes (Rochester, NY) lined up on the near side and sent the ball towards Jake Amereno (Commack, NY).
Amereno couldn't find the ball as it was picked up by sophomore Andy Rottier (Plainville, CT), who then sent a quick pass to freshman Spencer Ralphs (Simsbury, CT). After a quick scramble inside the box, Ralphs shot the ball under Amereno tying the game at 1-1 with one tick left on the clock, which sent the game to overtime.
Freel headed the game winner home at the 94:08 mark off a long cross from Itani, which kept MIT's unbeaten streak at 13 games and a clean 7-0 record in NEWMAC play. The last time MIT went undefeated in conference action was 2013 when the Engineers went 6-0-1 and made an appearance in the NCAA Tournament.
MIT (14-1-1, 7-0-0 NEWMAC) will be the No. 1 seed in the upcoming NEWMAC men's soccer and will received home field advantage and a first round bye. The Cardinal and Gray will await the winner of the No.4/5 matchup between WPI (11-6-2, 3-3-1 NEWMAC) and Springfield, which is slated for Wednesday, November 3 at a time to be determined later.
Release Courtesy MIT Sports Information