WORCESTER, Mass. – A lay-up by Joie Grassi (Plymouth, Mass.) and a 4-2 run over the final three minutes carried women's basketball to a 46-43 win over the host Engineers as the Beacons advanced to the title game of the WPI Holiday Tournament, Sunday evening at the Sports and Recreation Center.
UMass Boston 46, WPI 43
UMass Boston (9-1)
HOW IT HAPPENED
With Sunday's win the Beacons advance to the title game of the WPI Holiday Tournament where they will face either the University of Scranton or Roger Williams University at 3 p.m. in the Sports and Recreation Center.
Grassi's key lay-up put the Beacons up by one (42-41), while four straight made free throws by Jalani Jackson (Brockton, Mass.) capped-off the victory. Jackson's four points over the closing minutes, capped-off a 17-point performance for Jackson, who was the only double-digit scorer for UMB.
For Jackson she finished the night 5-for-8 from the field, 2-for-5 from 3-point range. At the charity stripe, the sophomore guard was 5-for-8. Not only did Grassi score the crucial lay-up for the Beacons as she finished with eight points, the sophomore also grabbed a team-high 10 rebounds, seven on the defensive glass.
From start-to-finish the two teams battled back-and-forth in the opening round of the holiday tournament. WPI held a slim two-point lead (10-8) through the first 10 minutes of the contest despite neither shooting extremely well. In the second frame, the Engineers continued to hold-off the Beacons as they went into the break with a 24-21 advantage. Jackson led all scorers in the second quarter with nine points as she shot 4-for-6 from the field, with one 3-pointer.
The third quarter saw the Beacons outscore the Engineers for the first time in the contest, despite shooting just over 28% from the field. Heading into the fourth quarter, UMB trailed by one (34-33) with 10 crucial minutes remaining in regulation.
The final quarter would cap-off the Beacons comeback as they outscored the Engineers 13-8 to earn the victory.
Spencer Vinson led all scorers with 20 points and 14 rebounds for the game's only double-double. Eight of her 14 boards came on the offensive glass, which was also a game-high.
BY THE NUMBERS
- On the day both teams shot 31% from the field, while UMB finished shooting 66% from the line
- WPI held a 44-37 advantage on the glass
- Sunday's meeting marked just the second meeting between UMB and WPI
- The Beacons now lead the series 2-0
- Sunday's meeting marked the first meeting between the two teams since 2002, when UMB earned a 66-62 win in overtime
The Beacons will play tomorrow at 3 pm in the WPI Holiday Tournament championship game. The Beacons will face either the University of Scranton or Roger Williams University.