WPI Holds Off Basketball In Defensive Slugfest

WPI Holds Off Basketball In Defensive Slugfest

SOUTH HADLEY, Mass. (Jan. 13, 2011) – Led by senior Elle Fontaine, the WPI women's basketball team held on for a 44-35 victory over NEWMAC foe Mount Holyoke College this evening at the Mildred S. Howard Gymnasium. The guard scored 14 of her 16 points over the final 8:05, as the Engineers created separation down the stretch. She also hauled in 10 rebounds to complete her fourth double-double of the season and 14th of her career. It was WPI's fifth win in a row.

Bree Hollinger Mount Holyoke was paced by junior Christine Chancy, who recorded her first double-double of the season and fifth of her career. The guard knocked down a pair of three-pointers en route to a season best 15 points. She also tallied 10 rebounds for the Lyons, who finished with a 44-43 edge on the glass. Sophomore guard Angelica Pascual registered 12 points, five rebounds and three assists, while junior forward Bree Hollinger collected a game high 12 boards.

WPI was limited to just 27.7% (13-47) shooting from the floor but drained 89.5% (17-19) of its free throw attempts. Fontaine was aided by senior guard Melissa Kuhn, who posted seven points and seven rebounds. Forward Siena Mamayek and Cindy Chelius added six points apiece off the bench.

Chelius scored all six of her points to spark a 9-0 WPI run midway through the first half. The Engineers led 17-7 following a free throw by first year guard Amanda Cormier at the 8:36 mark. They enjoyed a nine point advantage late in the half, but Mount Holyoke scored the final four to slice the deficit to 19-14. A baseline jumper by Pascual at the buzzer gave the Lyons momentum heading into the locker room. Chancy led all scorers with nine points  at the break.

Mount Holyoke continued to chip away in the early stages of the second stanza, as Chancy and Pascual knocked down back-to-back jumpers to trim to margin to 19-18. WPI regained control with six straight points over the next four minutes. Mamayek led the charge with four free throws.

The Engineers still led by seven points before Chancy knocked down her second trey of the night to cut the lead to 29-25 at the 8:31 mark. Fontaine responded with back-to-back jumpers to give WPI a 33-25 lead.

Refusing to go away, Mount Holyoke ran off seven straight points over the next two minutes. Pascual got the rally started with a three-ball and capped it off with a jumper, which closed the gap to 33-32 with 4:25 remaining in regulation.

From there, it was all Fontaine. The senior scored the next 10 points to put things away. She converted five free throws, a turnaround jumper and a three-pointer during the explosion.

Both squads will resume their NEWMAC schedules on Saturday. Mount Holyoke (2-10, 1-6 NEWMAC) will host MIT at 1:00 p.m., while WPI (10-3, 6-1 NEWMAC) will travel to Wellesley College for a 2:00 p.m. tip-off.