North Adams, MA- Courtney Pingelski scored the go ahead basket with 9 seconds remaining and Emily Moulton had 15 points, 12 rebounds, and 5 blocked shots to lead the MCLA women's basketball team past visiting Simmons College 54-50 this evening. With the win, the Trailblazers even their record at 4-4 while Simmons drops to 1-5 on the season.
After trailing at halftime, Simmons stormed back to take a 38-34 lead heading into the fourth quarter. They would maintain their lead until the 2:11 mark when Karina Mattera converted two free throws to give the hosts a 46-45 lead. Simmons' Molly Phillips drove for two on the next possession to give the lead back to the Sharks with just 1:51 left to play. Mattera once again was fouled and knocked both down again to put MCLA in front 48-47 with 1:33 left.
MCLA got a defensive stop and Moulton was fouled. She calmly drained two free throws to put MCLA up three with under a minute to play. Simmons would not go quietly however as Molly Phillips converted an old fashioned three point play with just 11 seconds left to even the score at 50-50.
After a Trailblazer timeout advanced the ball to midcourt, MCLA's Mckenzie Robinson took the inbounds pass and found a streaking Pingelski. The junior converted an eight foot jumper in traffic putting the home team up 52-50 and forcing a Simmons timeout. MCLA would force a turnover on their possession and Simmons was forced to foul. Pingelski was sent to the line and she knocked down both freebies to secure the win for MCLA.
In the opening quarter, Simmons led 12-9 but when L'Rae Brundige hit a jumper at the buzzer it was just 12-11. MCLA continued the run scoring the first seven points of the second period to take their largest lead of the half at 18-12. Brundige keyed the spurt with a top of the key three pointer.
The Sharks would come back though and get within one at 18-17 and then again at 20-19 with 4:19 left. Neither side could score over the next four minutes until Brundige converted a short corner jumper with 12 seconds left to make 22-19 at the half. MCLA turned it over 13 times in the half, but shot a respectable 44% while Simmons converted just 24% of their attempts.
Moulton was 6-13 from the floor for her 15 point effort. Brundige ended with 12 points for MCLA on 4-7 shooting. The Trailblazers shot 42% and overcame 20 turnovers in the win.
Simmons was led by Phillips' game high 23 point night. She was 8-16 from the floor. Presley Silva added 10 points and 8 rebounds before fouling out. Simmons outrebounded MCLA 43-36, including a 21-3 edge off the offensive glass.
MCLA is off until late December when they head to the Springfield College tournament.