Jeffs Trip Up No. 5 Tufts, 54-48
Contact: Ben Badua
AMHERST, Mass. - Megan Robertson ’15 turned in her eighth double-double of the season with 13 points and 10 rebounds as the fourth-ranked Amherst women’s basketball team knocked No. 5 Tufts (22-1, 8-1 NESCAC) from the ranks of the unbeatens with a hard-fought 54-48 win on Senior Day at LeFrak Gymnasium.
Extending their win streak over Tufts to nine dating back to the 2006-07 season, Amherst (22-0, 8-0 NESCAC) earned sole possession of first place atop the league standings, while keeping pace with No. 1 DePauw and No. 8 Montclair State as the nation’s only remaining undefeated teams.
Clinging onto a three-point lead with just over 30 seconds to play, Marcia Voigt ’13 banked in a desperation triple from the top of the key as the shot clock expired to give the Jeffs some much needed breathing room. Plagued with foul trouble in the first half, she scored nine of her 13 points in the second, adding six assists and five rebounds. Making a big contribution off the bench, Savannah Holness ’15 netted all nine of her points in the final 20 minutes, knocking down three of her four field-goal attempts, while grabbing six boards.
Kate Barnosky ’13 led all scorers with 15 points and six rebounds, while Hannah Foley ’15 and Hayley Kanner ’15 each had eight points. Bre Dufault ’13 chipped in with seven points on 3-of-5 shooting.
A tight game throughout, the lead changed hands 11 times, with neither team taking control until the waning moments of regulation. Knotted at 10-10 in the early going, Amherst rattled off a 6-1 run, going up five on a Haley Zwecker ’16 runner.
Tufts came right back with six unanswered, retaking the lead on a Barnosky triple at the 4:26 mark of the first. Knocking down 3-of-4 from the line in the next several minutes, Zwecker put Amherst back on top 22-20, but Kanner connected down low at 1:40 pulling Tufts even at the intermission.
Opening the second half on a 7-2 run, Amherst pushed the lead back up to five on a Jasmine Hardy ’13 trey at 16:53. Battling back, Tufts scored the game’s next seven points, pulling back in front on a Dufault three-pointer. Tied at 39-39 midway through the frame, the Jeffs strung together six-straight points before Barnosky ended the Jumbos’ dryspell with a pair of free throws.
With the Jeff margin swelling to eight thanks to a Cheyenne Pritchard ’16 trey and Holness free throw, Kanner and Barnosky combined for the game’s next five points, making it 49-46 with under three minutes to play. Needing a bucket to stave off a Tufts comeback, Voigt buried a long trey as the shot clock expired, putting Amherst up 52-46 with just 36 seconds left.
Foley connected on a pair from the free throw line with 18 seconds remaining, but it was too little, too late, with Robertson putting the finishing touches on a 54-48 victory with a pair of her own from the charity stripe.
Squaring off with the nation’s stingiest defense, Amherst shot 45.2 percent (19-for-42) from the floor, including a 50.0 percent (11-for-22) showing in the second half. Struggling to gain traction against the Jeffs, Tufts hit just 38.3 percent (18-for-47) from the field and 37.5 percent (3-for-8) from behind the three-point line.
Amherst returns to action on Friday, Feb. 8 against archrival Williams.