Despite strong efforts, Judges records their first loss against MIT

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. (courtesy MIT sports information) The Judges scored early in the ninth minute, with a goal by sophomore Lee Russo assisted by junior Theo Terris. But a surprise header by MIT in the 79th minute earned MIT the win, besting Brandeis just 2-1. 

MIT withstood Brandeis University's unrelenting attack during the final three minutes of regulation and emerged with a 2-1 victory in a non-conference men's soccer game on Wednesday. The Engineers improved to 7-2 on the year following their sixth straight win. The Judges suffered their first loss of the season as their ledger dipped to 6-1.

MIT put the pressure on early as it received three corner kicks during the opening three minutes of play. However, it was Brandeis that found the back of the net first in the 10th minute. From midfield, Theo Terris sent a throughball which was gathered by Lee Russo on the far side of the box. He drew MIT netminder Dylan Rankin off his line and quickly tapped the ball with his right foot just inside the near post.

The Judges nearly regained the lead in the 68th minute. Russo's free kick from 40 yards out initially ricocheted out of the box but the ball quickly made its way back in. Rankin stopped the first point blank shot and then turned away a strike on the ensuing rebound with his outstretched arm as he fell to the ground. The third try sailed over the net, ending the visitors' best scoring opportunity of the half.

Brandeis goalie Taylor Bracken made a risky save during a one-on-one situation to momentarily preserve the tie in the 76th minute. MIT's Anthony Saad had the ball on the outskirts of the box and just as he unleashed his shot, Bracken slid in front of its path and absorbed the strike with his abdomen.

The Engineers captured the lead with 10:18 remaining in regulation. Deep in the Judges' territory, Ben Lewis headed in Chase Anderson's throw-in for his second game-winning goal of the season.

In net, Bracken finished with two saves, while Rankin ended the game with four.

Both squads return to action on Saturday, Sept. 25. MIT will host WPI in a New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) contest while Brandeis will visit Babson College.