Worcester, MA --- Amaia Gritsko (Milford, CT) brought the late heroics on Saturday afternoon against Babson, but the Engineers rally all the way back in time, falling in a 55-53 heartbreaker at Harrington Auditorium.
WPI scored the final eight points, including an old-fashioned 3-point play by Gritsko with 39 seconds left to draw the game within a single basket, but Dani Davis (East Granby, CT) couldn't convert a last-gasp 3-pointer.
Gritsko led all players in points (19) and rebounds (10) for her second double-double. She shot 8-of-9 from the field with 11 points in the second half.
Kelly Morgan (Brookline, NH) also loomed large down the final stretch. Morgan (11 points) sank all three WPI 3-pointers, but none bigger than her trey with 1:53 left. Morgan hit a jumper the next trip down ahead of Gritsko's late and-1 play.
Davis was also a top contributor for WPI, finishing with 13 points and nine rebounds, along with four blocks.
WPI (8-11, 6-8 NEWMAC) held its final lead, 40-39, after Gritsko free throws with 9:42 to play, but Babson reeled off a 12-0 run led by six points from Giovanna Pickering (Hull, MA). The rally opened up the Beavers' largest lead, 51-40, with 6:31 left. Pickering was big all game for Babson (9-10, 9-6) with 18 points
The Engineers jumped in front off of the game's opening possession and led through halftime, with a Morgan 3 sending the home side to its biggest lead of the afternoon, 22-13, over with 5:36 to go in the first half.
Davis had WPI's final four points of the first half to make it 28-21 at the break.
Babson's Linnett Graber (Roseland, NJ) scored seven of her 11 points in the first half, including five of her seven free throw makes. Graber also had seven rebounds. Briana Hunt (Newton, MA) was the Beavers' third-leading scorer with eight points, doing all of her damage in the second half, including two 3-pointers.
Siena Mamayek (Melrose, MA) pulled in seven rebounds and Jessica Larsen (San Diego, CA) added six boards in just 15 minutes, helping WPI gain a 46 to 32 rebounding advantage, including a 22 to 12 edge on the offensive boards.
WPI picks back up with a 7:30 p.m. home game against Smith on Wednesday, the middle fixture of a three-game homestand. Meanwhile, Babson is back in action 8 p.m. Wednesday, hosting NEWMAC newcomer Emerson.
Release by Carl Setterlund - WPI Athletics Intern - Emerson '14