By Matt Noonan
WORCESTER, MA — WPI’s Zach Karalis scored the game-winning bucket on a reverse layup with two seconds remaining, which lifted the Engineers past the Beavers in the semifinals and secured the hosts a spot in Sunday’s conference championship.
Marco Coppola registered a team-high 19 points in the win, while Sam Longwell and Ryan Kolb each netted 16 points. Karalis finished with 10 points and four rebounds.
John Wickey put Babson up by eight with 5:49 remaining, but WPI answered with six points from Coppola and two free throws by Kolb, which tied the game at 59.
David Mack pushed the Beavers ahead by two, but Kolb evened the score with two more free throws before Karalis netted a go-ahead triple with 58 seconds remaining.
Babson’s Matt Palazini answered on the ensuing possession 26 seconds later, but that didn’t stop Karalis, who followed an Aaron Davis three-point attempt on the ensuing possession with a rebound and layup before time expired, which secured the win.
Wickey led all scorers with 20 points, while Palazini added 12 points.
Babson led by one at the break, but only tallied 23 points during the second session, three less than WPI.