WORCESTER, Mass. – Senior Dani Davis had 16 of her game-high 21 points in the first half leading WPI to a 59-50 win over Coast Guard in the New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) opener for both teams.
WPI improves to 5-1 overall and 1-0 in the NEWMAC while the Bears drop to 1-3 overall and 0-1 in the conference.
Junior Meghan Fornaro led Coast Guard with 20 points, nine rebounds and four assists in the loss while senior Dani Knox finished with eight points and nine rebounds for the Bears.
WPI shot 36.5 percent (19-52) from the floor and made five of 13 from 3-point range while Coast Guard was 19 of 58 (32.8 percent) from the field and 4 of 23 from behind the arc.
Coast Guard scored the first seven points of the second half to pull to within 29-28 on and old fashion 3-point play by Fornaro with 15:54 left. WPI would answer with six straight pushing the lead to 35-28 with 14:16 left.
The Engineers led 46-36 with 8:35 left before the Bears used a 9-1 spurt, seven of those points from coming from Fornaro, including a trey to cap the running making the score 47-45 with 6:01 left.
WPI would score eight straight, including 6 of 6 from the foul line, to push the lead to 55-45 with 2:05 left.
Senior Alexi Howland would hit a trey before Fornaro's final basket with one minute left made the score 55-50.
The Engineers would go 4 of 6 from the free throw line in the final 39 seconds to ice the game.
WPI built a ten point lead, 17-7, with 13:17 left in the first half as the Engineers made seven of their first 12 field goals.
The Engineers took their largest lead of the half 22-9 on a 3-pointer by Davis with 10:56 left in the opening half.
Coast Guard would use a 12-2 spurt over the next six minutes to pull to within 24-21 on a pair of free throws by junior Torie Sutherland with 4:49 left in the half.
Davis would score the final five points of the half for a 29-21 lead at the break. Davis had 16 first half points shooting 6 of 9 from the floor including 4 of 5 from behind the arc. The Engineers were 12 of 28 from the floor in the first half (42.9 percent) while making 4 of 8 from 3-point range.
The Bears shot 34.6 percent in the first half (9 of 26) while making just one of ten from behind the arc.
"Tonight was a tough game for us. We struggled shooting and we gave up some little things that we should not have that cost us the game," said Coast Guard head coach Alex Ivanscheck. "With a quick turnaround and a conference game on Saturday we have some things to clean up and get ready for Wellesley."
Coast Guard is back in action on Saturday night in a NEWMAC game vs. Wellesley in a game that will be played at Babson at 6 p.m.