Amherst Falls at Colby, 81-76, for First NESCAC Loss
Sophomore Conor Meehan had a career-high 24 points in the Jeffs' loss to Colby.
WATERVILLE, ME – Artie Cutrone scored a collegiate-high 32 points, including a 19-for-24 effort from the foul line, as the Colby College men’s basketball team held on for an 81-76 upset win over 16th-ranked Amherst College in NESCAC play Saturday. The Mules move to 13-5 overall and 4-1 in NESCAC play, while Amherst falls to 16-3 and 4-1 in the conference.
Cutrone, who previously had a game-high in scoring of 26 against Elms College last year, scored 16 points in each half. However, he did nearly all of his damage in the second half from the foul line. Cutrone broke a 53-year-old school record for attempted free throws in a half when he went 14-for-18 in the final 20 minutes.
Cutrone was 5-for-7 from the field and 5-for-6 from the foul line in the opening half to help the Mules to a 39-28 lead at the break. After Amherst scored the first five points of the game, Colby went on a 10-0 run to take the lead for good in the half. Colby led 32-17 when Cutrone hit a pair of free throws with 5:54 to play, but the Lord Jeffs managed to get the lead down to 11 at half.
Amherst chipped away at the lead quickly in the second half and finally tied the game at 47-47 on a free throw by first-year David Waller (Tampa, FL) with 10:07 to play. Sophomore Conor Meehan (Meriden, CT) added a basket with 9:41 to play to give the Lord Jeffs their first lead at 49-47 since the 5-0 run to start the game.
Colby, though, went on a 6-0 run—all of the points on free throws—to take the lead for good at 55-49 with 7:40 to play. Free throw shooting played a big part in the game and over the final seven minutes. The Mules were 35-for-41 from the line and Amherst was 20-for-34, but at one point was 15-for-28.
Colby opened up a 68-58 lead on a pair of free throws from Cutrone with 2:28 to play. The Lord Jeffs got as close as six points twice in the final 36 seconds, but Cutrone and Adam Choice combined to go 5-for-6 from the line in the final 24 seconds.
Meehan paced Amherst with a career-high 24 points, including 21 in the second half, and added three assists. Senior co-captain Brian Baskauskas (Palo Alto, CA) had 15 points and nine rebounds, while Waller had 12 points and senior teammate Mike Holsey (Potomac, MD) had 10 points and seven boards.
The Lord Jeffs continue their seven-game road trip Tuesday, Feb. 3, when they take on Rhode Island College at 7 p.m.