|Jeffs Pound Russell Sage, 64-38|
Jeffs Close Regular-Season Slate With 64-38 Victory Over Russell Sage
February 13, 2006
AMHERST, MA – The Amherst College women’s basketball team closed out its regular season slate with a 64-38 victory over visiting non-conference foe Russell Sage College on Monday night. The Jeffs forced 18 turnovers as they improved to 10-14, while the Gators fell to 3-20.
The two squads traded buckets in the early going with neither side able to maintain much rhythm or muster much offense as they stood at a 6-6 tie after five minutes of play. A pair of missed free throws by the Gators just inside the 13-minute mark allowed the Jeffs to reel off six straight points and build the first lead of the game, 14-6, with just over 10 minutes before the half. A pair of charity tosses from Russell Sage junior forward Ashley Wetherell (Dalton, MA) slowed the Jeff flurry, and she clipped the Jeff lead back to three, 16-13, on a deep trifecta near the eight-minute point.
The game hit a scoring drought that left the Jeffs with a five-point edge, 20-15, for almost four minutes, which was finally ended with a runner from Gator sophomore Ashli Fragomeni (Wynantskill, NY) at the 2:38-mark. The play, however, would remain slow through the remainder of the half and Amherst carried a narrow 21-17 edge into the locker room.
Russell Sage opened the second-half scoring as Fragomeni netted a trifecta to pull within one, and then first-year Kate Caddell (Amsterdam, NY) knifed through the Amherst defense to give the Gators their first lead of the game, 22-21. Sophomore Stefanie Reiff (Hinsdale, IL) answered quickly for the Jeffs with an old-fashioned three-point play, but Caddell would knot the score on a pair of free throws. The Amherst seniors mustered a small run of offense as Katie Latham (Wakefield, MA) slipped a back-door feed to Ali Flato (Piedmont, CA) and Julie Smith (Villanova, PA) added consecutive buckets, but Fragomeni was not to be outdone, tallying five straight points to keep pace.
Amherst’s full-court press hastened the tempo and the shallow Russell Sage bench struggled to keep up. The Jeffs’ lead grew to nine, 38-29, as senior co-captain Krissy Morin (Litchfield, NH) converted a steal-and-score and then buried a jumper from the corner. Amherst continually forced turnover-after-turnover and the lead continued to grow. Morin canned another shot from the corner to push the Jeff advantage to 15, 45-30, at the midway point, and a slick under-the-basket move from first-year Yasmine Harik (Rye Brook, NY) stretched it to 20, 52-32, with just under eight minutes to play.
The Jeffs went to their bench down the stretch, but still managed to cruise to the 24-point victory. Morin led Amherst with 12 points, while Latham chipped in 10 points. Smith finished with eight points and six rebounds, and Reiff compiled seven points and four steals.
Caddell paced the Gators with a double-double on 11 points and 11 rebounds, while Fragomeni finished with 14 points and Wetherall had 11 points.
Amherst opens postseason play this Saturday at 3 p.m. when they travel to No. 4 seed Williams College for the opening round of the NESCAC Tournament.
NESCAC Postseason Tournament Seedings
Semifinals- Saturday, February 25 at highest remaining seed (2:00 p.m./4:00 p.m.)
Championship- Sunday, February 26 (12:00 p.m.)
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