Jeffs Set to Host NCAA Tournament Opening Rounds
Contact: Ben Badua
AMHERST, Mass. - Fresh off its fourth consecutive NESCAC title, Amherst College has been selected as a regional host site for the NCAA Division III Women’s Basketball Championship. The Lord Jeffs begin their postseason run against Farmingdale State College on Friday, Mar. 1.
Also heading to LeFrak Gymnasium are Bridgewater State University and the University of New England, with Friday’s winners advancing to face each other in second round action on Saturday.
LIVE COVERAGE: Each of this weekend’s games will feature a free webcast and live stats.
TICKET INFORMATION: Tickets for this weekend's first and second round games will be: $6 for adults, $3 for students and seniors, while children two and under are admitted free of charge. The first 100 Amherst College students with I.D. to arrive at Friday or Saturday’s games will be admitted free, compliments of the Athletic Department. Students must enter through the back quad entrance to LeFrak.
SCOUTING AMHERST (26-1, 9-1 NESCAC)
Capturing its fourth straight conference crown (fifth overall), Amherst earned its sixth consecutive berth into the NCAA Division III Championship. Posting a 21-6 record in five previous trips, the sixth-ranked Jeffs will look to make another deep postseason run after advancing to the national semifinals in each of the past four seasons.
Averaging 17.5 points, 5.5 assists, 4.5 rebounds and 4.0 steals over the weekend, Marcia Voigt ’13 picked up her second NESCAC Player of the Week honor of the season. Becoming just the 14th player in program history to surpass the 1,000-point plateau in a 60-45 league semifinal win over Bowdoin, she scored 19 of her game-high 21 points in the second half of the Jeffs’ 53-38 championship game victory over Williams.
Currently leading the team in scoring (13.2 ppg), Voigt tops the NESCAC in assists, dishing out 4.2 helpers per outing. Helping the Jeffs to a 72-48 triumph over first round opponent Farmingdale State on Jan. 8, the senior point guard finished with 11 points and four rebounds.
Putting together a big game against the Rams earlier this season, Megan Robertson ’15 was a perfect 10-for-10 from the field and 5-for-5 from the free throw line, registering a team-high 25 points, nine rebounds and four blocks. Shooting 67.9 percent from the floor with 16.0 points and 5.3 rebounds in three conference playoff games, Robertson is in the midst of a stellar sophomore campaign, leading the NESCAC in rebounds (8.8), blocks (2.6) and field goal percentage (53.5).
Helping to shore up the Jeffs’ frontline, Bridget Crowley ’13 nearly averaged a double-double during the conference championships with 10.3 rebounds and a shade over nine points per game. Savannah Holness ’15 gives Amherst some added depth at the forward position, averaging 7.5 points and 5.2 rebounds per outing, while Jasmine Hardy ’13 helps spread the floor as the squad’s top scoring threat from the outside. Against Farmingdale State in January, Hardy tallied 14 points, knocking down 4-of-9 three-pointers.
SCOUTING FARMINGDALE STATE
(12-12, 8-6 Skyline)
Notching a hard-fought 40-39 victory over Purchase in the Skyline Conference championship game, Farmingdale State will make just its third appearance in the NCAA Tournament. First-team all-league pick Nicky Young ’14 headlines the Ram attack, ranking third in the conference in scoring (17.5 ppg). Posting 10 points and nine rebounds against Purchase, she scored 14 points in the loss to Amherst during the regular season.
Backcourt mate Nikita Green ’13, who went 6-for-12 from the floor against the Jeffs, netted 15 points against Amherst and sits second on the squad in scoring (11.3 ppg). A second-team all-league selection, she leads the Skyline in assists (4.6), while ranking third in steals (3.1).
Siohban Purvins ’13, who put up 13 points and 13 rebounds in the conference title game, gives the Rams a strong presence on the low block, alongside Lushanta Savadel ’14, who sits among the league leaders in both rebounds (8.6) and blocks (1.3) per game.
Scouting BRIDGEWATER STATE
(23-3, 11-2 MASCAC)
Winners of 11-straight and 17 of their last 18, the Bears have already notched the second-most wins in program history (23), while securing the school’s third consecutive NCAA berth (eighth overall). Defeating Westfield St., 85-72, in the conference championship, BSU captured a third straight MASCAC title and once again heads to the Pioneer Valley after falling to Babson, 68-59, in last year’s LeFrak opener.
Garnering MASCAC tournament MVP honors, Jenna Williamson ’14 is coming off arguably her best performance to date, tallying a career-high 34 points (including 25 in the second half) to help the Bears erase a 14-point deficit in the league championship game. Hitting on 8-of-12 from the floor and 5-of-3 from beyond the arc, Williamson is one of four Bears averaging double figures, pouring in 12.6 points per game.
First-team All-MASCAC honoree Michaela Cosby ’13, who scored 20 points with six assists and five boards against Westfield, leads the squad in scoring (14.9 ppg), while ranking third in the conference in field goal percentage (51.1). Fellow first-team Elisha Homich ’13 averages 13.1 ppg, while sitting second in the league in helpers (5.2). Megan Boutilette ’14, who averages just over 12 points per game, garnered second-team all-conference distinction after leading the MASCAC in field goal percentage (59.0), while ranking third in rebounds (8.2) and blocks (1.4).
scouting univ. of NEW ENGLAND
(24-4, 18-0 CCC)
Starting the year just 5-4, the University of New England has won 19-straight games, with their last loss coming on Jan. 2 to nationally-ranked No. 8 Southern Maine. Piecing together a fifth consecutive 20-win season, the Nor’Easters defeated Salva Regina, 69-63, in the Commonwealth Coast Conference championship game to secure their third NCAA berth in four seasons.
CCC Player of the Year Beth Suggs ’13, who turned in a double-double with 11 points and 14 rebounds against the Seahawks, currently sits among the league leaders in points (14.4) and field goal percentage (45.7). Fellow first-team selection Kelly Coleman ’15 had 15 points and six rebounds in the CCC title game, while sitting second on the team in scoring (12.1 ppg).
First-year Lauren Hayden averaged 8.6 points and 5.4 rebounds en route to all-league honorable mention accolades, while fellow rookie Meghan Gribbin ’16 ranks third in the conference in helpers (3.9). Sadie DiPierro ’16 and Alanna Vose ’16 are capable of giving UNE a boost off the bench, with the duo combining for 26 points in the championship game against Salve Regina.
2012 NCAA Division III Women's Basketball Championship
First Round - Friday, Mar. 1
Bridgewater State (23-3) vs. University of New England (24-4) --- 5 p.m.
Amherst (26-1) vs. Farmingdale State (12-12) --- 7 p.m.
Second Round - Saturday, Mar. 2
Friday's Winners --- 6 p.m.
* * * NCAA TOURNAMENT BRACKET * * *
FSC Team Website * BSU Team Website * UNE Team Website