#1 Lord Jeffs Top Conn. College 61-42 in NESCAC Opener

Sarah Leyman had a team-high seven offensive
rebounds as Amherst did the small things to win.

NEW LONDON, CT – The top-ranked Amherst College women’s basketball team rebounded from its first defeat of the season with a 61-42 win over Connecticut College in both teams’ NESCAC opener. The Lord Jeffs (14-1/1-0 NESCAC) held a 53-40 edge in rebounding over the Camels, and forced 27 turnovers to power the road win.

Amherst senior co-captain Jaci Daigneault (Guilford, CT) led all players with 13 points on 5-of-8 shooting with nine rebounds. Daigneault added two blocks and three steals in her 17 minutes of game play. Six other Amherst players scored five or more points in the win, with senior co-captain Sarah Leyman (Cincinnati, OH) adding six points and nine rebounds, including seven on the offensive end. Jen Shinall was the only Conn College player to reach double digits in scoring, putting in 11 points in the loss.

The Lord Jeffs jumped all over the Camels at the start of the game, running out to a 16-0 lead. Amherst held Conn College off the scoreboard until the 12:23 mark of the first half. The Camels cut the lead down to 13 points as Shinall nailed a three with 6:05 to play, but Amherst finished the half on a 10-4 run to take a 34-15 lead into the break.

Amherst slowly build its advantage to 30 points by the midpoint of the second half, getting a spark of the bench as the lead hit its largest point from sophomore Bridget Crowley (Hampden, MA). With six minutes to play in the game, Amherst’s lead was still at 58-30 before the Camels made a late run to close the gap. The result was never in doubt in the end, with Amherst holding on for the 61-42 win.

Amherst made just seven of the 33 three pointers it attempted, including only 2-of-15 in the second half. Amherst’s defense caused 14 steals, with eight players registering at least one theft in the win. The Jeffs went to work on the offensive glass, pulling down 28 offensive rebounds to the Camels’ 27 defensive boards.

The Lord Jeffs will return to action tomorrow afternoon for another NESCAC and Little Three tilt at Wesleyan University at 4 p.m.