Women outlast RPI, 80-73 in OT, to advance to Invitational finals

Tathiana Pierre getting ready to shoot a free throw during a game with two teammates watching on.
Tathiana Pierre '22 (photo by Sportspix.com)

WALTHAM, Mass. – The Brandeis University women's basketball team needed overtime tonight, but the Judges outscored visiting RPI, 15-8, in the extra session to earn a 80-73 victory in the opening round of the Judges Invitational presented by the Park Lodge Hotel Group.


  • Brandeis, 1-1.
  • RPI, 0-2.


  • The Judges led, 14-13, after a close first period, and they looked to take control of the game with a 25-13 advantage in the second that made it 39-26 at the half. Senior Emma Reavis (Miami, Okla./Deerfield Acad.) led all scorers with 11 points at the break.
  • RPI climbed back into the game in the third by outscoring Brandeis, 23-16, as the Engineers connected on 4-of-9 from 3-point range. The visitors' Ahnalese Pearson scored 11 points after hitting three of those trifectas as her team trailed, 55-49.
  • The Engineers closed within one point early in the fourth on a steal by Pearson that led to a lay-up and a 3-pointer by Ashlyn O'Neal that made it 55-54, Judges, with 8:30 remaining in regulation.
  • Brandeis kept RPI at bay, but they took their first lead since early in the game when Nicole Dapra dialed long distance to make it 60-58 with 7:32 left in the period.
  • Another Pearson trifecta gave the Engineers a five-point lead, but Brandeis battled back.
  • Judge senior Francesca Marchese (Staten Island, N.Y./Staten Island) hit back-to-back 3-pointers, putting Brandeis back on top, 65-63, with 4:45 left in the fourth.
  • Both teams went ice cold from there, with only an O'Neal lay-up with 37 seconds to go tying the game for RPI at 65-all. She had a chance to put the visitors on top from the free throw line, but missed her chance at an and-one, and both teams came up empty in their final possessions of regulation.
  • In OT, Brandeis did most of their damage from the line. Reavis opened the scoring with a drive to the hoop for two, but O'Neal answered by converting a three-point play.
  • Judge rookie Katherine Vaughan (Bedford, Mass. / Bedford) scored on a feed from Reavis, but RPI's Danielle Strauf connected on a jumper with 3:36 to go that made it 70-69 in favor of the Engineers.
  • That would be RPI's last lead, as Brandeis hit their next nine free throws while holding the Engineers off the board for more than three minutes. Senior Tathiana Pierre (Jericho, N.Y. / Sacred Heart Academy) hit what proved to be the go-ahead freebies with 2:51 on the clock to make it 71-70, and the Judges never trailed again.


  • Brandeis put four players in double figures in scoring, paced by Reavis's career-high 19 in just 27 minutes. She hit 7-of-13 from the field and 5-of-8 from the floor. She also had seven rebounds and three assists.
  • Pierre scored 14 points, also a career-high, as she hit 4-of-9 from the field and 6-of-9 from the line. She also had a career-best seven rebounds and tied a career-high with three assists.
  • Vaughan came off the bench contributed 10 points and grabbed a game-high 11 rebounds for her first collegiate double-double in just 10 minutes of action.
  • First-year Molly James (Pittsburgh, Pa./Upper St. Clair) added 10 points in her collegiate debut, playing 16 minutes off the bench.
  • RPI had three players reach double figures in scoring: Pearson with 17 points, O'Neil with 15 and Lolo Reynolds with 13.
  • DaPra led the Engineers with 10 rebounds and a game-high seven assists.
  • Brandeis got a key contribution from their bench, which outscored RPI's, 34-21, with Vaughan and James nearly outscoring the Engineer reserves on their own.
  • The Judges also outrebounded the visitors, 55-44, and shot 41% (26-64) compared to 34% (29-86).
  • RPI had assists on 18 of their 29 baskets. The Engineers did damage from long distance, hitting 10 3-pointers to four for Brandeis.


  • Marchese's two 3-pointers give her 92 for her career. She needs eight more to become Brandeis's ninth player with 100 for her career.
  • Brandeis had lost its only previous meeting with RPI in 2003.


  • In the second game of the Brandeis Judges Invitational, Maine Maritime defeated Connecticut College, 56-50.
  • MMA outscored Conn., 15-9, from the free-throw line, offsetting the Camels' 9-3 advantage in 3-pointers.
  • Lauren Plissey led the Mariners with 13 points, while Erianna Moore had 11 points, 10 rebounds and six assists.
  • CC was paced by Hallie O'Toole's 17 points and 14 points and 11 boards from Rebecca Oberman-Levi.


  • Brandeis will meet Maine Maritime at 2 p.m. in the championship game, while RPI and Conn. College will face off at 12 noon.