Women's Basketball

2017 NCAA Tournament Sweet 16 | 10 NCAA Tournaments | 10 Conference Titles

NEWMAC Tournament Semifinal Preview: Women's Basketball vs. MIT

NEWMAC Tournament Semifinal Preview: Women's Basketball vs. MIT

NEWMAC Tournament Semifinal
Women's Basketball vs. MIT
Thursday, February 21 | 7 p.m.
Staake Gymnasium | Babson Park, Mass.

THE SERIES
• Babson and MIT will meet for the 66th time overall and third time this season on Thursday night. The Beavers are 54-11 all-time against the Engineers in a series that dates back to the 1976-77 campaign, and swept both regular season meetings by a total of seven points.

POSTSEASON HISTORY
• Babson and MIT will meet for the first time since 2001 and sixth time overall in the conference playoffs. The Beavers are 5-0 all-time against the Engineers, although four of the five meetings came over two decades ago when both programs were members of the NEW 8.

LAST MEETING
• Junior Katherine Tamulionis scored a game-high 17 points and the Beavers built a 17-point third-quarter lead before holding on for a 55-53 win over MIT on January 23 in Babson Park.
• Senior Payton Ouimette added 14 points and nine rebounds for Babson, while first-year Christina Antonakakis scored 12 of her team-high 15 points in the fourth quarter for the Engineers.

LAST MIT WIN
• The Engineers rallied from a 14-point halftime deficit and went 9-of-11 from the free throw line in the second overtime period on their way to defeating the Beavers, 78-74, on January 25, 2017, in Babson Park.
• Giovanna Pickering '17 finished with a then-career-high 31 points to go along with seven rebounds, three assists and two steals for Babson, while senior Taylor V'Dovec scored 29 points on 12-of-19 shooting to lead MIT.

SCOUTING THE ENGINEERS
• Fourth-seeded MIT (19-7) opened its NEWMAC title defense with a 76-58 win over fifth-seeded Emerson in Tuesday's quarterfinals.
• V'Dovec led four plyers in double figures with 19 points on 8-of-13 shooting and senior Kara Holinski and sophomore Kylie Gallagher both added 15 points for the Engineers, who outscored the Lions 27-11 in the fourth quarter.
• Holinski (11.3 pts, 3.8 reb, 2.8 ast) is shooting 41.7 percent from beyond the arc, Antonakakis (9.7 pts, 2.4 ast) is averaging 15.3 points over the last three games, and V'Dovec (9.5 pts, 5.0 reb) is shooting 47.2 percent on the year.
• MIT led the league in scoring defense (52.1 points) and ranked second in field goal percentage (43.8) over 16 regular season games.

SCOUTING THE BEAVERS
• Top-seeded Babson (21-4), which is making its 11th straight NEWMAC semifinal appearance, wrapped up the regular season with a 67-44 win at WPI on Saturday.
• Tamulionis scored a game-high 10 points as seven different players scored at least six points for the Beavers, who held the Engineers to just 34.2 percent shooting over the first three quarters.
• Ouimette (14.7 pts, 11.4 reb, 2.4 ast) ranks XX in Division III with 15 double-doubles, junior Emily Bonifacic (11.2 pts, 7.0 reb) is shooting 52.4 percent, and Tamulionis (10.6 pts, 2.2 ast) averaged 12.3 points over the final three games of the regular season.
• The Green and White averaged a league-high 71.9 points during the regular season, and ranks 19th in Division III in rebounding margin (10.6).

DOWN TO THE WIRE
• Each of the last five games between Babson and MIT have been decided by five points or less.
• The Beavers own four wins by a total of 14 points during this stretch, while the Engineers' lone victory over the last five meetings came in OT after erasing a 14-point deficit.

NUMBERS TO KNOW
• The Green and White has gone 16-0 this season when holding its opponents below 60 points.
• The Beavers have outscored the opposition at the free throw in all 25 games this winter and has made 91 more foul shots (342) than their foes have attempted (251).
• Ouimette averaged 18.0 points on 55.2 percent shooting to go along with 10.0 rebounds, while Tamulionis put up 16.0 points and was 11-of-14 at the free throw line in two regular season matchups against MIT.

REGIONAL IMPACT
• Despite losing to just No. 6/5 Tufts over the final three weeks of the regular season, Babson has dropped from fifth to seventh in the NCAA Northeast Region rankings. The Beavers find themselves two spots behind Smith, which hosts Springfield in the other NEWMAC semifinal on Thursday, while MIT is 10th in the final public rankings before NCAA Tournament selections are made on Monday.

STUFFING THE STAT SHEET
• Entering Thursday's contest, Ouimette is the only player in the conference to rank in the top 10 in scoring (third), rebounding (second) and assists (10th).

INSIDE THE NUMBERS
• The Beavers are 8-2 in NEWMAC semifinal contests since 2009 and are seeking their ninth appearance in the conference final in 11 years on Thursday.

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