Beavers Deal Defending Division III National Champions First Loss Since 2017
BABSON PARK, Mass.—Babson College scored a pair of first-half goals and senior goalkeeper Steven Heintzelman (Middleton, Mass.) finished with a season-high nine saves as the Beavers stunned top-ranked Tufts University, 2-0, in non-conference men's soccer action on Tuesday afternoon at Hartwell-Rogers Field.
With the win, Babson improves to 6-4-2 on the year, while Tufts, which is the defending Division III national champions, slips to 8-1-1 and sees its 30-game unbeaten streak come to an end.
Senior Alex Crompton (Killington, Vt.) and sophomore Eamon Keenan (East Greenwich, R.I.) each had a goal for the Beavers. Senior Youcef Ziad (Holbrook, Mass.), sophomore Liam Hanlon (Boxborough, Mass.) and first-year Ryan Grund (Princeton Junction, N.J.) all chipped in with an assist in the victory.
Junior goalkeeper Will Harned (Darien, Conn.) recorded one save in a losing effort for the Jumbos.
After surviving and early flurry from Tufts, the Green and White took a 1-0 lead in the 11th minute. Ziad took a pass from Grund and hit a long service into the box toward Crompton, who beat his mark and flicked a header just past Harned for his second goal of the season.
The Beavers doubled their advantage in the 27th minute on Keenan's second marker of the year. Hanlon's shot from the left side of the box was blocked by a Jumbos' defender, but Keenan blasted the rebound inside the left post from 12 yards.
Heintzelman made his best save of the game diving to his left to deny Tufts senior Gavin Tasker (Concord, Mass.) in the 24th minute, and the Babson defense was superb managing the lead over the final 45 minutes. Heintzelman was at the near post to snare junior Calvin Aroh's (Glastonbury, Conn.) flick following a corner in the 64th minute, and later pushed away junior Mati Cano's (Washington, D.C.) header in the 87th minute.
Sophomore Mitchell Collins (Burlington, Mass.) also blocked sophomore Ian Daly's (Albany, Calif.) in the 85th minute with Heintzelman scrambling to recover following Tufts initial service into the box.
The Jumbos outshot the Beavers 26-12, which included a 16-4 bulge in the second half, and attempted 11 of their 13 corner kicks in the second half after conceding seven to the Green and White over the opening 45 minutes.
Both teams return to action on Saturday as Babson travels to Emerson at 1 p.m., while Tufts visits nationally-ranked Amherst at 2:30 p.m.
• The Beavers are now 9-9-0 all-time against Tufts, although the victory was their first in the series since 1997.
• Tuesday's win marked Babson's first victory over a ranked opponent since topping then-No. 4 Brandeis by the same 2-0 score line back on September 8, 2018.
• The Beavers are just the fourth team to score at least two goals against Tufts going back to the start of the 2016 season, a stretch that spans 74 matches.
• Babson has scored first in eight of 12 contests this season.