NORTON, Mass. - Freshman Travis Blair (Hastings, N.Y./Hastings) scored a pair of goals in Wheaton College's 5-0 shutout of MIT on Senior Day Saturday afternoon in New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) men's soccer action at a wet and rainy Keefe Field.
The win secures the No. 3 seed in this week's NEWMAC Tournament and sets up a rematch with No. 2 seed Springfield, who defeated the Lyons (9-7-2, 4-2-0 NEWMAC) in overtime on Homecoming weekend, 3-2. The loss drops MIT to 8-7-0 (2-4-0 NEWMAC) and gives the Engineers the No. 5 seed in the tourney. They will travel to Worcester for a 6 p.m. match with No. 4 WPI on Wednesday.
Playing their final home game on the field they called home for the last four years, junior David Turina (North Yarmouth, Maine/Northfield Mount Hermon School) picked up two assists while classmate Rory McGonigle (Los Angeles, Calif./Loyola) tallied a goal and also assisted on classmate Conor Finn's (Kennebunk, Maine/Kennebunk) second goal of the season.
Blair staked the Lyons to a 1-0 lead 26:12 into the match with his eighth goal of the season. Junior Will Nesbitt (Holliston, Mass./Holliston) sent a pass to Blair in the box, and he deposited his shot into the lower right corner. The half closed with the home team holding an 8-5 edge in shots.
Five minutes into the second half, the Lyons took advantage of their second corner kick opportunity of the afternoon and made the score 2-0. Turina lofted the ball into the box that Blair headed past senior goalkeeper Dylan Rankin (Providence, R.I./Moses Brown School) at 50:46.
Fifteen minutes later, junior Federico Kelly (Hingham, Mass./Hingham) scored off a free kick from midfield by Turina to push the lead to 3-0. McGonigle's second goal of the season came off a blast from 25 yards out that struck an MIT player and found its way inside the left post at 75:43. Finn capped the scoring when he took a breakaway feed from McGonigle and scored into the right side of the net at 76:54.
The Lyons finished the match with a 17-9 advantage in shots and a slight 3-2 edge in corner kicks. Wheaton freshman goalkeeper Devin Delfino (Bourne, Mass./Bourne) made one saves in 79:45 of action before being replaced by classmate Jeff Paer (Fair Lawn, N.J./Fair Lawn). Rankin made one save and was removed with 20 minutes left in the match in favor of freshman Samuel Cannon (Scarsdale, N.Y./Scarsdale). He finished with one save.