Bears Lose Thriller In NEWMAC Quarterfinals
WORCESTER, Mass.—Senior Theresa Logan's 3-pointer with 1:18 lifted fourth-seeded WPI to a thrilling 44-43 win over fifth-seeded Coast Guard in the quarterfinals of the New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) tournament.
WPI (15-10) will now take on top-seeded and host Babson on Saturday in the semifinals at 1 p.m.
Coast Guard, which doubled its win total from last season, was making its first NEWMAC tournament appearance since the 2009-10 season. The team was 2-34 in NEWMAC play over the past two seasons and just 6-48 in conference play over the past three seasons, but this year the Bears finished 8-10 in league play and were 10-15 overall.
"It was a great game and we played very hard," said Coast Guard head coach Alex Ivansheck. "We had a shot at the end with a chance to win."
"One of our team goals before the season was to make the conference tournament and these players came day in and day out and worked hard all season to achieve that goal. We had our ups and downs, but we pulled out some key wins and these players have laid the foundation for the future and have turned this program around."
Following Logan's trey, the Bears turned the ball over twice, but WPI missed pair of field goals and then the front end of a one-and-one with 19 seconds left. Coast Guard called time out and then in the closing seconds sophomore Dani Knox's jumper was no good to give the Engineers the win.
Freshman Victoria Sutherland led Coast Guard by registering her third double-double of the season as she finished with 13 points and 11 rebounds. Knox finished with ten rebounds.
Logan led WPI with 13 points while sophomore Dani Davis had 11 points and 10 rebounds in the win.
Coast Guard shot 31.4 percent from the floor (16-51) making 4 of 16 from behind the arc while WPI shot 29 percent (18-62) from the field making just two of 17 from behind the arc.
Sophomore Alexi Howland got the Bears off to a quick start in the second half scoring the first five points with a 3-pointer and a deuce as Coast Guard took a 23-16 lead with 18:18 left.
Freshman Victoria Sutherland's first basket of the game gave the Bears their largest lead of the game 26-18 with 17:40 left.
WPI responded with six straight cutting the lead to 26-24 with 15:26 to go in the game.
The Engineers regained the lead 41-38 on a 3-pointer by Davis with 4:15 remaining.
Sutherland scored the next five as the Bears took the lead 43-41 on her trey with 2:21 left.
Both teams got off to a slow start in the game as each team made just one of its first seven shots before a bucket by Davis gave WPI a 6-2 lead with 14:33 left in the first half.
Coast Guard took its first lead of the game as Howland knocked down a 3-pointer and junior Larla Brown made a layup to put the Bears up 7-6 with 11:24 left in the half.
Junior Kaitlin Ward scored five straight with a trifecta and a jumper to give the Bears a 12-8 lead with 6:31 left in the first half.
Freshman Meghan Fornaro's bucket with 19 seconds left in the half gave Coast Guard an 18-16 lead at the break.
Coast Guard shot just 26 percent in the first half (8-31) making just two of ten from 3-point range while WPI shot 25 percent in the opening stanza (7-28) missing all eight from behind the arc.