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November 5, 2017

No. 13 MIT Blanks Springfield, 2-0, To Claim NEWMAC Championship

THE BASICS: 

Score: No. 13 MIT 2, Springfield College 0

Records: No. 13 MIT (18-1-1), Springfield College (14-6-1)

Location: Cambridge, Mass. (Roberts Field at Steinbrenner Stadium)

The Lead: The MIT women's soccer team, ranked No. 13 in the latest United Soccer Coaches Division III poll and second in the latest NCAA Division III New England regional rankings, used goals by sophomore Emily Berzolla (Riverside, Conn.) and Montana Reilly (Los Angeles, Calif.) to win the New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) Championship for the first time since 2011.

For her defensive efforts, MIT junior Shannon Miller (Pittsford, N.Y.) was named as the Tournament's Most Outstanding Player.

HOW IT HAPPENED:

- MIT got on the board 32:37 into the opening half when Berzolla was taken down in the box after driving down the field through the Springfield defenders. The sophomore lined up at the dot and buried the shot into the corner of the net past Pride keeper Ciara Boucher to take the 1-0 lead.

- Reilly registered an insurance goal for the Engineers in the 63rd minute which secured the NEWMAC title for MIT. Senior captain Olivia Struckman (Scottsdale, Ariz.) set up the play when she drove down the left side of the field and crossed the ball to junior Amy Apostol (Los Gatos, Calif.). Apostol played the ball one touch to Reilly, who kicked the ball into the back of the net for the 2-0 advantage. 

- Springfield put together a run of four shots - three of which of were saved by MIT keeper Lily Mueller (Lakeville, Minn.) - over a span of 3:26 with about 15 minutes to play in attempt to get back into the game. However, the MIT defense including Tournament Most Outstanding Player Shannon Miller held the Pride without a goal to claim the NEWMAC title.

INSIDE THE NUMBERS:

- MIT out shot Springfield by a 19-16 margin and took three corner kicks compared to the Pride's two.

- Mueller improved to 17-1-1 with six saves in net for the Engineers, while Boucher stopped the ball nine times for the Pride.

- Berzolla's penalty kick was the first one take by MIT this fall. After securing the goal, the sophomore is now 3-for-3 all-time in penalty kick opportunities.

- In the two meetings with Springfield this fall, MIT outscored the Pride by a 6-0 margin after defeating Springfield 4-0 back on Saturday, October 21 at home. 

UP NEXT:

- The Engineers earn the league's automatic bid to the NCAA Division III National Championship Tournament as the field will be announced tomorrow afternoon at 1:00 p.m. The selection show can be viewed at www.ncaa.com 

STAY CONNECTED:

- For the latest on MIT Athletics, follow the Engineers via social media on TwitterFacebookInstagram and YouTube.

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