Athletics

Swensen's 26 Points Lead Nationally-Ranked Jeffs to Victory at Wesleyan

Sam Swensen
Sophomore Sam Swensen scored a career-high 26 points to lead Amherst to victory over Wesleyan.

From a Wesleyan Release 

MIDDLETOWN, CT – The Amherst College women’s basketball team, ranked 22nd in Division III, remained undefeated on the season by winning on the road at Little Three rival Wesleyan University, 76-71. Amherst is now 2-0 in Little Three play, having defeated Williams College this past Saturday. Each team in the Little Three still has a NESCAC conference game remaining with its other two rivals.

The Lord Jeffs used a 12-4 run over the final four minutes of the contest to lock up the win. Wesleyan, down by as many as 14 (25-11) in the first half and trailing 64-54 with 8:17 to play, went on a 13-0 run over the next 4:14 to take a 67-64 lead with 4:03 to go.

Senior Lucy Spring had three baskets during the run while junior Ali Fourney chipped in with a three-pointer and senior Nikki Maletta canned a pair of free throws. Amherst regained the lead on two first-year Sarah Leyman (Cincinnati, OH) free throws and a basket by sophomore Sam Swensen (Rockaway Park, NY), who led all scorers in the game with a career-high 26. After a Sprung free throw tied it with 2:36 left, Swensen gave Amherst the lead for good at 2:16 off an assist by junior Stacy Brossy (Honolulu, HI). 

Senior Anne-Claire Roesch (Westport, CT) got a second-chance bucket to make it 72-68 before Maletta answered with a three to cut the margin to 72-71.  An inside drive by senior tri-captain Shaina Pollack (Great Neck, NY) gave the visitors a 74-71 cushion at :55 and after a Wesleyan miss, Pollack pulled the same trick for the last bucket of the game with :23 to go. Wesleyan missed three final attempts.

Four Wesleyan players hit double-digits with Sprung leading the way with 16 while Fourney and junior Meredith Lowe each scored 15 and Maletta ended with 11. Leyman had a double-double for Amherst with 11 points and 10 boards.  Pollack chipped in with 10 points and five assists. She and Roesch combined for 11 assists.

Amherst is nationally ranked for the first time in program history, as the Lord Jeffs were ranked 22nd in the nation by D3hoops.com on Monday. They will return to action Friday, when they kick off their NESCAC slate with a tough game against 14th-ranked Tufts University, who is also undefeated on the season.

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