Engineers Defeat Wheaton, 62-50

Senior Lauren Sascha Burton
Senior Lauren Sascha Burton

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – A balanced scoring attack coupled with 14 unanswered points in the second half helped power the MIT women's basketball team past Wheaton College, 62-50, in a NEWMAC game on Wednesday night. Senior Lauren Sascha Burton (Seattle, Wash.) racked up eight points, five rebounds, four assists, and two steals for the Engineers (11-12, 7-10 NEWMAC). Sophomore Abbie Brickley (Sandy, Utah) registered 16 points on 8-of-10 shooting from the free throw line and hauled in a game-high 12 rebounds for the Lyons (8-16, 5-12).

With the game tied at five, a three-point play by Burton sparked a string of eight straight points that put MIT up 13-5 at the 12:22 mark. Wheaton stayed within striking distance as it narrowed the gap to three on four occasions, the last on a Brickley layup that made the score 21-18 with six seconds left in the half.

Sophomore Michelle Battipaglia (Katonah, N.Y.) registered five of the first seven points of the second stanza to give the Engineers some breathing room. However, the Lyons continued to attack as they came within one on three occasions as a basket by freshman Rebecca Arnone (Litchfield, N.H.) trimmed the deficit to 28-27 with 15:22 on the clock. A three-pointer by Battipaglia coupled with a steal and three-point play from freshman Sabrina Drammis (Hilton Head Island, S.C.) ignited the Engineers' pivotal run that resulted in 44-29 advantage midway through the frame.

The Cardinal and Gray maintained a comfortable cushion but Wheaton whittled the lead down to nine (54-45) courtesy of two Brickley free throws with 2:37 remaining. A layup by freshman Durva Bhandare (North Brunswick, N.J.) on MIT's next possession thwarted the comeback attempt and was also the final field goal of the game as both squads combined for an 11-of-14 shooting performance from the charity stripe down the stretch.

Drammis finished with 16 points and nine rebounds while Battipaglia tallied 15 points and five rebounds. Bhandare totaled 10 points, three assists, and two steals as sophomore Mari Kordell (Ijamsville, Md.) tacked on nine points and three assists.

Freshman Kiley Shoemaker (Fayetteville, N.Y.) totaled nine rebounds and eight points while sophomore Kenzie Kuhn (Glenwood Springs, Colo.) chipped in eight points, five rebounds, and four assists.

The Engineers recorded an 18-6 advantage in points off turnovers while the Lyons finished with a 49-29 margin on the boards,

Both squads conclude NEWMAC regular season play on Saturday, Feb. 16. MIT will travel to Clark University while Wheaton will host Mount Holyoke College.