WORCESTER, Mass. – A 20-11 run during a six-minute span in the second half helped propel WPI to a 68-56 win over the MIT women's basketball team on Saturday afternoon. Junior Tamara Pena (Aliso Viejo, Calif.) tallied 12 points, six rebounds, two assists, one steal, and one block for the Engineers (3-3, 1-1 NEWMAC).
Freshman Sabrina Drammis (Hilton Head Island, S.C.) led MIT with 13 points coming off the bench to go along with four rebounds while classmate Maya Ramachandran (Fremont, Calif.) posted eight points, four boards, and two steals. Freshman Durva Bhandare (North Brunswick, N.J.) and sophomore Michelle Battipaglia (Katonah, N.Y.) both recorded six points as Bhandare dished out three assists.
A Pena three-pointer coupled with Ramachandran's layup gave the Engineers an early 5-1 lead; however, WPI scored six straight points to take the slight edge at the 12:23 mark. After an exchange of baskets, the hosts' margin reached four points on three occasions, the last at 17-13 with 6:15 left in the frame. Ramachandran's layup cut MIT's deficit in half but WPI responded with a 13-4 run to enter halftime with a 30-19 advantage.
The Engineers opened the second stanza by registering seven straight points during the first three minutes to come within four (30-26). WPI responded with a 10-2 run to gain some breathing room, but MIT continued to attack as a 6-2 spurt narrowed the gap to 42-34 with 9:13 on the clock. WPI then mounted its pivotal run which produced a 62-45 lead with 3:43 left to play. The Cardinal and Gray generated some momentum courtesy of baskets by Drammis, Battipaglia, and Bhandare but WPI thwarted the late rally by converting a jumper and then two free throws with 1:11 to go.
Next up for MIT will be a home tilt with NEWMAC foe U.S. Coast Guard Academy on Tuesday, Dec. 4.