Workman Powers Jeffs Past Newbury, 89-74

Contact: Ben Badua


AMHERST, Mass. - Willy Workman ’13 led the way with 19 points and 10 rebounds as the fifth-ranked Amherst men’s basketball team opened its 2012-13 season with an 89-74 victory over Newbury College in the 12th annual Ken Wright ’52 Memorial Invitational.

Finishing 5-for-7 from the field and 8-for-10 from the line, Workman added five assists and three steals in a solid all-around effort, while Aaron Toomey ’14 chipped in with 16 points and three assists. Peter Kaasila ’13 and Ben Pollack ’16 rounded out the list of Jeffs in double figures, scoring 11 and 10 points, respectively, while combining for nine rebounds, five blocks and 9-for-12 shooting from the field.

Steve Rosemond ’14 paced the Nighthawks with 22 points on 7-for-16 shooting, while Tim Young ’13 and Eric Watson ’14 each had 14 points and six boards. Kwame Thompson ’14 added 11 points, four rebounds, two assists and two steals.

Jumping out to a fast start, Amherst netted 15 of the game’s first 19 points, with Workman and Kaasila accounting for nine points in the paint during the stretch. Down 12 with under 15 minutes to go in the first, Rosemond tried to spark a Newbury rally, netting five straight to pull the visitors within seven.

Amherst responded by outscoring the Nighthawks 9-4 over the next several minutes, rebuilding a 12-point margin on a Workman layup halfway through the period. With Amherst extending the lead to 13 on a pair of Toomey free throws with under three to go before the intermission, Newbury closed out strong, mounting a 9-2 run to trim the deficit to 48-42.

Stemming the Nighthawk tide to start the second, Amherst rattled off a 26-8 run over the first 9:07 of the frame. After Kaasila and Thompson traded baskets to open then scoring, Toomey buried a pair of triples on consecutive Amherst possessions before a Peterson Bernard ’13 free throw trimmed the Jeff cushion to 56-48.

The home team reeled off 13 unanswered, capped off by a pair of David Kalema ’14 free throws, before Young momentarily ended the Newbury drought with a bucket at 11:40. Following a pair of Allen Williamson ’13 free throws, Pollack bookended the decisive run by knocking down a pair of his own from the charity stripe to make it 74-50.

The Nighthawks pared the lead down to 18 with just over eight to go in regulation, but Amherst continued to pull away, piecing together a 12-4 run over the next five minutes to go up 26 on a Connor Gach ’14 three.

Finishing with a 44-40 rebounding edge, the Lord Jeffs were stellar at the line, hitting 23 of their 25 (92.0 percent) attempts. Tightening up in the second half, the Amherst defense held Newbury to just 35.5 percent (11-for-31) from the field after surrendering a 47.4 percent (18-for-38) clip over the first 20 minutes.

With the win Amherst advances to face Curry College on tomorrow’s championship game slated for 3 p.m. The Nighthawks will look to break into the win column when they take on Colby-Sawyer in a consolation game scheduled for 1 p.m.
The Colonels edged out the Chargers 97-96 in tonight’s late game, despite a game-high 42 points from Colby-Sawyer first-year Koang Thok. Three Curry players finished with at least 20 points, led by senior guard Sedale Jones’ 25. Lambros Papalambros ’14 and A.J. Stephens ’14 had 21 and 20 points, respectively, while combining for 10 rebounds and six assists.

Thok shot 16-for-23 from the floor and 6-for-8 from the line, adding four rebounds and two steals to his tally. Mike Dias ’16 chipped in with 19 points and 10 boards, while Paul Holland ’14 finished with 12 points.