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Women's Basketball Handles MIT, 76-39

Abby Connors Box Score

Cambridge, Mass. – February 4, 2009 - A 17-4 run by Springfield College during the final eight minutes of the first half helped power it to a 76-39 victory over MIT in a New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) women’s basketball game on Wednesday night. Hannah Sparkman led the way for the Engineers (4-14, 0-8 NEWMAC), with 19 points on 8-of-15 shooting to go along with five steals and four rebounds. Corey Finch and Cherelle Allen both posted 12 points for the Pride (12-8, 7-1 NEWMAC).

The early stages of the contest were a defensive battle as a basket by Sally Simpson trimmed MIT’s deficit to three (11-8) at the 11:15 mark. Finch quickly answered with a bucket of her own, which was followed by two minutes of scoreless play. Springfield’s Kelly Murphy ended the drought with a three-pointer, but a jumper by Sparkman brought the Engineers within six (16-10) with 8:40 on the clock. Less than a minute later, a free throw by Murphy began the Pride’s pivotal run and resulted in a 33-14 advantage at the intermission.

Both sides traded baskets for a majority of the second half until Springfield mounted an 18-5 run during the last 5:24 of the game. The Pride registered a 53.4% (31-58) shooting performance for the game while tallying 24 assists.

Simpson bolstered the Engineers’ offense with eight points as Jamie Simmons registered a team-high five rebounds and four assists. Kristen Whaley and Allison Simi grabbed four boards apiece.

In addition to their team-high scoring efforts, Finch collected a game-high eight rebounds while Allen snagged five steals. Rachelle Walker notched 11 points, including eight during the Pride’s first-half run, and five caroms. Murphy dished out five assists as Abby Connors added four of her own. 12 members of the Pride played as least double digit minutes in the game while 13 of the 14 players for Springfield scored. For the game, Springfield's bench scored as many points (39) as MIT did all game.

Both squads will continue NEWMAC action at home on Saturday, Feb. 7. MIT will host Clark University while Springfield will take on Babson College.

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Naomi Graves Entering her 23rd season as head coach in 2013-14, Naomi Graves has directed her squads to an impressive 323-261 record (.553 winning percentage). Since joining the Division III ranks in 1995, Graves has led the Pride to 12 post-season bids in the past 18 years, including five berths in the NCAA Division III Tournament. Read more.

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