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Men's Basketball Falls 78-62 To Babson in Tough Home Loss

Jiri Schindler--The Tech
The MIT defense attempts to block the shot of a Babson College guard in lat Tuesday's men's basketball game in Rockwell Cage. MIT lost 78-62.

By Martin Duke
sports columnist

The men's basketball team began its conference schedule with a tough 7862 home loss to the Babson Beavers last Tuesday night. The loss drops the Engineers to 03 overall.

The game was closer than the score indicated, with a Babson run in garbage time accounting for the margin in the final scores. The game was a sloppy, defensive struggle in which both teams - and Babson especially - shot quite poorly from the floor. Babson point guard Michael Kingsley, for instance, made only two of his more than a dozen attempts from the floor.

Fouls plague Engineers

The main story of the game was MIT's foul trouble. Forward Melvin Pullen '98 committed four fouls in the first half and consequently sat out for most of the second, but he still managed a team-leading 14 points.

In total, three Engineers fouled out: John Fluker '97, Godfrey Inniss '98, and John Schaeffer '00, who accounted for 19 of MIT's 62 points.

Two other Engineers in addition to Pullen finished the game with four fouls, and it was in this context of serious foul trouble for the Engineers that Babson stopped MIT's last drive and managed to extend its lead to an eventual 16 points.

Coupled with the tremendous number of fouls was Babson's efficient free throw shooting. They unofficially converted 31 of 42 tries.

Most of Babson's good tries were in the first half when the team started to build its lead. By comparison, the Engineers had only 14 attempts of which nine were good.

MIT jumped out to an early 60 lead, as both teams had a lot of trouble shooting the ball early. Babson erased that lead and came up with a 10-point advantage of their own primarily by shooting the ball well from the free throw line.

The Engineers brought the game to within two in the closing minutes of the second half before a few costly turnovers and a cascade of fouling out turned the tide in favor of Babson for good.

Behind Pullen, the other big scorers for the Engineers were Kareem Benjamin '97, who had 11 points, and Trent Redman '97, who had nine points.