WORCESTER -- WPI shot a blistering 60% in the first quarter en route to scoring 29 points in the opening 10 minutes on its way to a 84-52 victory over visiting Nichols in a non-conference women's basketball contest played Tuesday evening.
With the win, the Engineers improve to 6-0 on the season, its best start under the tutelage of 22-year year coach Cherise Galasso. Nichols slips to 4-3 with the loss.
Despite scoring four points in the opening 20 seconds, the Engineers found themselves down 7-6 2:08 into the contest but quickly adjusted to a Nichols press, outscoring the visitors 23-7 the rest of the quarter, and never saw its advantage shrink to single digits the rest of the way. The 29-point opening quarter was WPI's largest scoring quarter of the season.
The Crimson and Gray turned to it post players and they delivered in a big way. Senior Lisa Cristiano (Valhalla, NY) paced all players with 16 points on 6-of-8 shooting from the floor and nailing all four of her free throw attempts while rookie Adrianna Niles (Tewksbury, MA) set a new career-high with 14 points, draining all seven of her field goal tries and Emily Raynowska (Brentwood, NH) added eight points.
As a team WPI enjoyed a 50-20 edge on the glass with Alex Scariati (Scotch Plains, NJ) gobbling-up a game-best nine rebounds and Kara ONeil (Holden, MA) setting a new personal high with eight. Jordan Wynn (Groton, MA) chipped in with seven rebounds to go along with a new career-best in assists with nine while Cristiano and McKenna Finken (Simsbury, CT) both hauled in six boards.
Scariati doled out six assists as the hosts were credited with an eye-popping 27 assists on 32 made baskets. Melanie Presseau (Manchester, NH) contributed 13 points, including a trio of 3-pointers and led all players with four on the night.
Abrianna Vazquez (Dedham, MA) notched 12 points for the Bison while Summer Klein (Stamford, CT) reached double figures as well with 11. Jillian Spillane (Paxton, MA) stuffed the stat sheets with six points, five rebounds, two assists, a pair of steals and a block.
The Crimson and Gray now are off for a week, closing out a three-game homestand on Tuesday, November 30th at 7pm against Fitchburg State. Nichols opens CCC play the following day with a 5:30pm appointment at Salve Regina.