WORCESTER -- Fifteen different players recorded points, including nine between six and 12 points, the team shot 50.8 percent from the field and the WPI women's basketball team picked up its fifth-straight opening night victory with an 84-37 triumph of Anna Maria in the opening game of the Worcester City Tournament to kick off the 2022-23 season.
All five WPI (1-0) starters recorded at least one basket as the team combined for nine 3-pointers on the night as Alex Scariati (Scotch Plains, NJ) finished with a near triple double with six points, nine rebounds and six assists on the night. Her only two buckets (both from behind the arc) were the first two of the night for the Engineers, while all six of her assists came in the second half, including five in a decisive third quarter.
Victoria Mirecki (Washingtonville, NY) paced the Engineers with 12 points off the bench while Alice Kelly (Wethersfield, CT) added WPI's other double-digit effort of the night with 10 points. Mirecki added two rebounds and two steals on the night while Kelly pulled down four boards and added two blocks.
Anna Maria's leading scorer was Tamyiah Bankhead (Warrior, AL) who finished with eight points off the bench while Julitza Delgado (Southbridge, MA) and Arianna Saladini (Fitchburg, MA) chipped in seven points apiece.
The two teams kept it close in the first quarter as the Amcats netted the first basket of the night on a Gina Parmenter (Oxford, MA) jumper, before Scariati nailed back-to-back treys. Trading buckets for the rest of the first quarter resulted in a 17-12 advantage in favor of the Engineers.
WPI raced out on a 12-2 run in the first five minutes of the second quarter to make it a 29-14 advantage after a Kelly 3-pointer. Anna Maria added one more basket from Marinique Reddin (Tampa, FL) at the 3:23 mark, but WPI would finish the second quarter outscoring the Amcats 17-4 and head into halftime with a 34-16 lead.
Lisa Cristiano's (Valhalla, NY) strong play kicked off the third quarter as she began a WPI 10-0 run off with a layup, followed by a Presseau trey, another Cristiano lay-in and a McKenna Finken (Simsbury, CT) 3-pointer to cap the run and make it a 44-16 game. Once Emily Raynowska (Brentwood, NH) checked in, she added to the mix with back-to-back layups to make it a 50-19 advantage in a decisive third quarter that put the game away for the Engineers.
WPI outscored Anna Maria 28-10 in the third quarter and 22-11 in the fourth en route to the victory.
WPI will look to keep the momentum going and aim for its eighth straight title against Worcester State or Clark in the Championship game of the Worcester City Tournament on Saturday, Nov. 12 at 7pm. Anna Maria returns to action in the consolation round of the tournament Saturday afternoon at 5pm.