Jeffs to Host Trinity in NESCAC Quarterfinals
Contact: Justin Long
AMHERST, Mass. – After earning the top seed in the NESCAC Women’s Basketball Championship for the third consecutive year, Amherst College will host eighth-seeded Trinity College this Saturday at 2 p.m. in the tournament’s quarterfinal round.
Ticket Information: Doors to LeFrak Gymnasium will open Saturday at 12:30 p.m. Tickets will be $3 for adults and $1 for students and children. Amherst students with a valid ID will be admitted free of charge.
Live Coverage: Saturday’s game will feature a free webcast and live statistics.
Last Meeting: Amherst opened the game on a 16-1 run and never looked back en route to a decisive 66-44 win when these teams met during the regular season on Jan. 28. Trinity didn’t register its first field goal until 11:33 remained in the first half, and the Lord Jeffs soon followed with a 13-0 run to bring the score to 33-7. The Bantams accounted for the game’s next 13 points, but the Jeffs led by at least 20 for the final 11:51. (Box Score)
How They Got Here: Trinity and Bates finished the regular season tied for eighth place in the NESCAC standings, but the Bantams’ 80-71 win over the Bobcats proved to be the key factor in determining the final playoff spot. Trinity won three of its last four regular season games and would be riding a four-game win streak had it not been for a tough 80-76 overtime loss to Williams.
The Lord Jeffs won their first three conference games handily, but their bid for a perfect season was put to the test during a challenging seven-game road trip. After defeating Bowdoin and Colby by a combined five points, Amherst got back into a rhythm and finished unbeaten in NESCAC play for the third time in as many years. The Jeffs have won three of the past four conference titles, with last year’s postseason run also beginning against Trinity in the quarterfinals.
The Difference Maker: The key for the Bantams on Saturday will be whether they can get off to a strong start. Trinity outscored Amherst by a 37-33 margin in the final 24:33 of the regular-season meeting, but the Jeffs had already built an insurmountable lead. The Bantams held Amherst scoreless for five and a half minutes at one point, but they’ll need to play more consistently if they want to pull off the upset.
Key Statistic: Amherst has won 60 consecutive games in LeFrak Gymnasium and is in the midst of a 43-game overall winning streak.
Player to Watch: Shannon Finucane ’12 will begin the postseason with 994 career points, as she is attempting to join classmates Caroline Stedman ’12 and Lem Atanga McCormick ’12 in the 1,000 Point Club. Stedman is averaging 13.5 points in her past six NESCAC Championship games.
2012 NESCAC Women’s Basketball Championship
Quarterfinal Round - Saturday, Feb. 18
No. 8 Trinity (10-12/3-7) @ No. 1 Amherst (24-0/10-0)
No. 7 Connecticut (16-6/5-5) @ No. 2 Tufts (19-5/8-2)
No. 6 Wesleyan (13-8/5-5) @ No. 3 Bowdoin (18-6/7-3)
No. 5 Williams (19-5/6-4) @ No. 4 Colby (18-5/7-3)
Semifinal Round - Saturday, Feb. 25
(Played at Highest Remaining Seed)
Championship Game - Sunday, Feb. 26