BOSTON, Mass.—UMass Boston women's basketball held off a late run by the host Lions to win the 2018 Emerson College Tip-Off Tournament on Sunday afternoon.
UMass Boston 66, Emerson College 61
(UMass Boston 4-0)
(Emerson College 2-2)
HOW IT HAPPENED
Tournament MVP Jalani Jackson scored nine of her 20 points in the fourth quarter, including four free throws in the final 19 seconds, to lead the Beacons. Jackson recorded a new career-high in points after shooting 6-7 from the field and 4-4 from distance. She also added four assists and two steals in 29 minutes of action.
Despite dealing with early foul trouble, Grassi finished with 15 points and eight rebounds for UMass Boston. Meg Dixon (Hanover, Mass.) tacked on eight points, eight rebounds and three assists in the victory.
Sam Boyle and Charlie Boyle led the way for the host Lions. S. Boyle finished with a team-best 15 points and 11 rebounds, while her sister Charlie had a double-double of 14 points and 10 boards.
Ashley Toner added on 14 points off the bench for Emerson.
UMass Boston led for over 36 minutes in the contest, but couldn never quite put the hosts away.
After starting the game down 1-0 due to a procedural violation, the Beacons quickly struck for eight-straight points to open the contest. Grassi and Dixon knocked down back-to-back threes and Maya Thompson (Billerica, Mass.) added a jumper to make it 8-1 just 1:37 into the game.
Emerson would answer with a 10-0 run to take their largest lead of the game (11-8). The Beacons countered with a 7-0 run of their own to go into the second quarter leading 15-11.
UMass Boston opened up their first double-digit lead of the game midway through the second stanza. Jackson knocked down back-to-back threes and then Dixon added one of her own to give UMass Boston a 24-14 cushion with 5:47 left in the second.
Emerson clawed their way back to within four, but a Williams jumper gave the Beacons a 27-21 halftime advantage.
UMass Boston pushed their lead out to 10 early in the third (35-25), only to see the Lions respond with an 8-0 run from the Boyle sisters.
The Lions would cut it two again late in the quarter, only to have UMass Boston score the final four points of the third for a 46-40 advantage.
Tahjai Mazyck (Hamden, Conn.), who scored the final basket of the third, added two more baskets to start the fourth, to give UMass Boston another double-digit lead (50-40).
Emerson responded with one final run, as the Lions scored nine-straight points to cut the Beacons lead to 55-53 with 3:39 to play.
Grassi hit a layup on the next possession and Jackson followed with a 3-pointer to extend the lead to 60-55 with 2:54 left.
After a Toner three-point play cut the Beacons lead to 60-59, Grassi hit a layup at 1:12 to extend the lead back to three.
C. Boyle answered back with a layup of her own, but Jackson went 4-of-4 from the line in the final 19 seconds and the Lions missed a pair of threes to tie the game.
BY THE NUMBERS
- Jackson has set a new career-high for points in two of her past three games. She recorded 18 points on Wednesday against Salem State, and tied her freshman high with 16 on Saturday against Keuka College. She is averaging a team-high 16.25 points per game.
- The Beacons had not won a regular-season tournament since November 2015. UMass Boston defeated host Maine Maritime Academy in the Pepsi Mariner Challenge Title Game that season.
- UMass Boston shot a season-high 69.2 percent (9-13) from behind the 3-point line and 73.3 percent (11-15) from the charity stripe.
- With the win, UMass Boston improved to 9-4 all-time against Emerson College. The win snapped a four-game losing streak against the Lions (06-09).
UMass Boston will have a week off, before they open Little East Conference play on Wednesday November 28 at 5:30 p.m. at Keene State College.