BIDDEFORD, Maine – Junior Sami Ashton (Clinton, Conn.) scored a game-high 18 points to propel the Connecticut College women's basketball team to a 55-44 victory over WPI in the championship game of the Hampton Inn Tip-Off Tournament at the University of New England's Harold Alfond Forum on Sunday afternoon.
Ashton picked up tournament MVP honors after averaging 16.5 points, 5.5 rebounds, 3.0 steals and 2.5 assists per game over the weekend. Senior Margaret Corcoran (Milton, Mass.) also made the all-tournament team.
Connecticut College (2-0) led from wire-to-wire in the contest and burst out to a 15-7 advantage when senior Kylie Caouette (Ashburnham, Mass.) stole the ball away from Caitlin Boermeester and finished on the other end. The lead extended to twin figures when Ashton drilled a jumper to make it 26-16 at the 3:50 mark of the second quarter, and the junior ballooned the margin to 15 points on two occasions by sinking a free throw and nailing a jump shot to give her team a 34-19 advantage entering recess.
The Camels only managed to score seven points in the third frame, but the second-quarter deficit would prove to be too much for the Engineers to overcome. Spencer Vinson slashed the margin down to five points at 41-36 by converting a layup with 9:03 remaining, but the Camels responded by getting a pair of layups from Ashton to force the Engineers to take a timeout. Walsh drilled a trey after receiving a pass from senior Julia Wanfried (Westfield, N.J.) to create a 48-38 score with 3:09 left to give the team all the insurance it needed to claim the tournament title.
In addition to lighting up for 18 points, Ashton, the tournament MVP, filled the box score by also providing four rebounds, four steals and two assists while not committing a turnover. Corcoran scored 12 points and blocked three shots, and junior Dana Muckstadt (Dover, Mass.) had another double-digit rebounding effort by pulling down 10.
WPI (3-1), which entered the game undefeated, was paced by Bailey Savage and Maddie Blake. Savage scored 10 points, and Blake grabbednine rebounds. McKenna Finken finished the game with nine points, five boards, and three assists.
Connecticut College will next face Johnson & Wales in its home opener on Tuesday afternoon at 5 p.m.