Lord Jeffs Breeze Past No. 17 Emmanuel, 85-38

Shannon Finucane had 13 points and five assists in the win.

AMHERST, MA – The 2nd-ranked Amherst College women’s basketball team kicked off a rare mid-week doubleheader this evening playing the first of two games against Emmanuel College prior to the men’s game in the nightcap. Amherst held Emmanuel to just 10 percent shooting in the first half, and led by 40 at the break en route to an 83-38 win.

This evening’s women’s game was a rematch from last year’s NCAA Division III Tournament Second Round game between Amherst and Emmanuel. In that game, the Lord Jeffs earned a spot in the “Sweet Sixteen” for the second straight season with a 76-37 win.

Both Amherst and Emmanuel entered tonight’s game undefeated at 6-0, but the Lord Jeffs jumped all over the 17th-ranked Saints at the start of the game. Amherst shot 7-for-11 from the field during the first 7:38 to open up a 19-4 lead, while Emmanuel started 0-for-12 during the same stretch of time.

At the 9:37 mark of the first half, Amherst forced Emmanuel to call its second timeout after opening up a 27-4 lead. At that point, the Saints were still without a field goal (0-for-18). Emmanuel finally got a shot to fall with 7:15 to play in the frame, as Pamela Mobley made a jumper from the right elbow. On Emmanuel’s next possession, Iman Davis finished off a three-point play the old fashioned way for the Saints.

Despite firing on all cylinders offensively, Amherst continued to play great defense, and with just 55 seconds to play in the half, the Lord Jeffs forced a shot clock violation with a 51-13 lead. At the half, Amherst held a commanding 53-13 lead, with six different players having scored eight or more points. Lem Atanga McCormick (Chicago, IL) led all players with 10 points, while Kim Fiorentino (Holmdel, NJ), Caroline Stedman (Walpole, MA) and Shannon Finucane (Cortland, NY) had nine points apiece. Jaci Daigneault (Guilford, CT) and Sarah Leyman (Cincinnati, OH) were close behind with eight points each, while Davis paced the Saints with eight points.

Amherst’s lead grew as large as 51 points with 11:34 to play in the second half as Atanga McCormick made a pair of free throws. Over the final quarter of the game, Amherst maintained a comfortable lead en route to an 85-38 win. Each of Amherst’s 11 players who dressed scored in the win, with Atanga McCormick’s 14 points leading four players in double digits. Finucane, Fiorentino and Stedman scored 13, 12 and 11, respectively, for Amherst.

Meredith Shaw led the Saints with 10 points, eight of which came in the second half as Emmanuel was out-scored only 32-25 in the second stanza.

With the result, Amherst remains unbeaten at 7-0, while the Saints fall to 6-1 on the year. The Lord Jeffs will face Eastern Connecticut State University on Thursday, before traveling to Springfield College one week from today for their final game before winter vacation.