Women's Basketball Continues Best Start in Three Decades by Defeating Simmons

Maura Buckley

Worcester, MA --- Led by Dani Davis' (East Granby, CT) 13 points, the WPI women's basketball team used a balanced offensive attack to sink visiting Simmons, 82-40, in a non-conference matchup on Saturday afternoon in Harrington Auditorium. 

With the victory, the Engineers improve to 9-2 for the third time in program history and the first time since the 1984-85 campaign, a span of 30 years. 

WPI, who saw 11 different scorers in the first half, used an 11-2 spurt, featuring five points by Davis to open the game. Rachel Pineda (Shrewsbury, MA) led the way with eight points including a pair of layups in a fast paced spurt late in the frame that saw the hosts score six fast break points in 17 seconds. Jennifer Janiak (Chelmsford, MA) tallied 12 of the Sharks (1-7) 19 points, including 10 by way of two 3-pointers and two jumpers in the 2:57 following the hosts opening outburst. 

After the break, Simmons was able to cut its deficit to 26 twice behind a triple by Gracie Rolfe (Newton, MA) 1:44 into the stanza and another Janiak jumper with 15:47 to play. The Engineers went on to increase their buffer to as much as 46 en route to the victory as 14 different players dented the scoring column, including career-highs by Brittney Lambert (Hudson, NH), Madison Beck (Manilius, NY) and Sarah Rogers (Colchester, CT) and six off the bench by Maura Buckley (Melrose, MA). 

Davis added a pair of assists and steals in addition to a block on the afternoon while Pineda tallied 10 points and chipped in with a game-best four steals to go with a pair of helpers.  Ama Biney (Worcester, MA) narrowly missed double-digits in scoring with nine points in just 11 minutes of action.  Jessica Larsen (Poway, CA) shared game-high honors with seven rebounds and doled out a pair of helpers and added a block. Amaia Gritsko (Milford, CT) and Lisa Mendez (Yonkers, NY) also pitched in with two assists for the Engineers. 

Janiak finished with a game-high 18 points as Ashley McAdams (Freeport, NY) pulled down seven boards. Nicole Alberghhini (Northboro, MA) contributed both of the Sharks blocks and Rolfe tallied two steals. 

WPI held commanding leads in points in the paint (52-8), points off turnovers (43-3), second chance points (22-5) and bench points (45-4) while scoring all 20 of the game's fast break points. 

The Engineers, which were playing its final non-conference game of the season, turns their attention to Wednesday, when they head to Springfield for a 7pm matchup of two of the three undefeated squads in the NEWMAC.  Simmons continues a busy stretch of five contests in eight days Monday with a noontime tip versus Wheelock. 

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