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Football Drops One In Turnabout Game


Arifur Rahman--The Tech
Wide receiver Trent Redman '97 runs for MIT's first touchdown at the football team's game against Western New England College on Saturda. MIT lost the game 25-22.

By Erik S. Balsley
Associate Sports Editor

Despite a strong first half for the football team, the Engineers lost Saturday's game against WesternNew England College 2522.

The Engineers were ahead 227 at the half, but a strong fourth quarter for WNEC pushed them ahead to win the game by three points.

The first touchdown of the game was scored with 10:45 left in the first quarter by WNEC. After the successful extra point, the game was 70.

The Engineers promptly responded by scoring a touchdown off a pass from quarterback Scott Blackburn '99 to wide receiver Trent Redman '97 with 8:12 left in the quarter. The attempt for the extra point failed, and the score was 67.

Down by one, the Engineers continued to play aggressively with a strong offensive line. With 1:18 remaining in the quarter, Redman once again caught a pass from Blackburn to run 57 yards and, after avoiding a few close tackles, went on to score a touchdown. The extra point attempt failed, and the score at quarter's end was 127.

The quarter ended on a note of what was to come as defensive back Dan Castro '98 intercepted a pass from the WNECquarterback soon before the quarter ended. The Engineers would intercept the ball from WNEC three times during the second quarter.

The team had a strong second quarter and dominated play over WNEC. MIT missed a field goal attempt with about 13 minutes left in the half, but the Engineers soon found themselves in possession of the ball again at the WNECnine- yard line with a first down.

MIT managed to drive to WNEC's three-yard line. On the fourth down, Blackburn handed the ball to running back Troy Gayeski '98, who rushed through the WNEC defensive line to score another touchdown for MIT.

This time the extra point attempt was successful as Ahren Lembke-Windler '00, kicked the ball through the posts to bring the score to 197.

Game shifts in second half

After the half time, the winds of change quite literally began to rise during the scoreless third quarter. As the game progressed, the slight breeze that prevailed at its start had become overwhelming.

Although MIT managed to drive themselves to the WNECfour-yard line during the quarter and were playing with the wind, they were unable to score. With the fourth quarter - and switched sides - MIT now found itself playing into the wind.

WNEC appeared to pull itself together during this quarter and play effectively with the wind and as a team. At the same time, the seams of the MIToffensive and defensive lines began to fray and show.

With 10:14 left in the quarter, the WNEC team scored a 34 yard field goal to bring the score to 2210. Despite a penalty against WNEC for an illegal offense, which MIT declined, they were able to come back.

With 6:51 left in the quarter, WNEC was on MIT's five-yard line and rushed through MIT's defensive line to score the touchdown. With a successful extra point attempt, the score was now 2217.

WNEC then received yet another penalty in the quarter for a personal foul. This time MIT accepted the 15-yard penalty, and WNECfound itself on its own 41-yard line with a first down. However, they were soon on the MIT28-yard line with 1:51 left in the game.

Finally, with 38 seconds left in the game, WNEC found itself on MIT's three-yard line. With a hand off from their quarterback, WNEC rushed again through the MIT defensive line to score the touchdown, bringing the score to 2322.

WNEC went for the two point conversion, trying to eliminate what could have been a loss were the Engineers to have scored a field goal when they regained the ball.

Unfortunately for the Engineers, WNEC succeeded in its attempt. The score stood at 2522 with only 38 seconds left in the half, and the MIT fans were biting their fingernails at the prospect of losing what had earlier seemed to be an already won game.

When the Engineers regained the ball, they made a valiant attempt to even the score. They were unsuccessful, however, and lost by three points.

When the final tallies were calculated, MIT rushed a total of 111 yards, as opposed to 126 for WNEC. However, MIT had some fine performances during the game: Redman scored two touchdowns, and Gayeski rushed 131 of MIT's 145 yards gained during the game.

The team's next game will be this Saturday against Stonehill College at noon in Steibrenner Stadium.