BROOKLYN – Pratt Institute women's basketball cruised in its season opener, winning 72-53 over visiting Vaughn College in non-league play at the Pratt ARC Saturday afternoon.
Reigning Hudson Valley Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Rookie of the Year Amissa Epperson picked up where she left off as a freshman, logging a double-double in the first eight minutes of the contest and finishing with a team-best of 22 points, and a game- and career-high of 23 rebounds – all but one rebound of which came before the fourth quarter. The center also swatted five shots as Pratt won its season opener for a second straight year.
In her first career game as a Cannoneer, Emily Guerra finished two assists shy of a triple-double with 18 points, 17 rebounds, and eight assists. Senior Anna Bryce earned a double-double of her own with 17 points and 12 rebounds.
A Cannoneers 10-0 run, with eight points belonging to Epperson, opened up a 10-2 lead in the first quarter, after which Pratt led 17-5. An AimeeLyn Miller three-pointer at the 5:45 mark of the second tied the team's largest lead of the game at 24-10, and the Cannoneers went into halftime with a comfortable 34-21 advantage.
Through halftime, Epperson led all players with 16 points and 16 rebounds.
A Maia Rivers three-pointer cut the margin to under 10 points for the first time since the first quarter, at 42-33 with 1:44 left in the third. Pratt responded with a 10-0 run, six of which was scored by Guerra, in putting the game out of reach for good, up 52-33 at the 9:20 mark of the fourth. Fewer than three minutes later, a third straight Anna Bryce layup capped another 10-0 run at 62-36, and the Cannoneers held on the a 72-53 win.
Led by Epperson's monster effort, Pratt won the battle of the boards 76-45.
Stingy defense from Sade Jackson's club held the Warriors to 26 percent shooting on the night in the coach's debut on the sidelines. Rivers led all scorers, pouring in 27 points for Vaughn.
At 1-0, the Cannoneers return to play Thursday night at the ARC against Yeshiva University.