Taylor, Defense Lead W-Hoops to 50-24 win at Smith|
January 9, 2001
NORTHAMPTON, Mass. - Senior Amherst College Co-captain Charlotte Taylor (Harvard, MA) connected on her first four field-goal attempts, all three-pointers, en route to a career-high 14 points on Tuesday night, as the Amherst women's basketball team used suffocating defense to cruise past the host Smith College Pioneers, picking up their ninth win with a 50-24 victory.
|Charlotte Taylor's career-high|
14 points led the Jeffs
Taylor's sharp-shooting woke the Jeffs up from a slow start, after both teams came out ice-cold from the field. Neither team got on the scoreboard until Taylor's three-pointer at the 15:15-mark, but the Jeffs, held scoreless over the first 4:45, exploded for 21 points over the next 4:48, including three trifectas from the squad's lone senior, and a three-bucket, three free-throw effort from first-year forward Sarah Bergman (Shaftsbury, VT).
From there, Head Coach Billy McBride used his reserves for most of the remaining 10:17 of the half, and the second unit came up with solid defense, holding Smith to only nine points over the final 10 minutes of the period. Taylor's fourth-straight three-pointer, a rainbow at the 6:13-mark, helped the Jeffs to a 28-11 halftime lead.
The Pioneers, playing before an energized home crowd, opened the second half with a mini-run, rolling off three consecutive buckets, including a pretty steal and fast-break layup by senior Co-captain Beth Rist (Easthampton, MA), to cut Amherst's lead to 11, 28-17, at the 17:12-mark. The Jeffs, however, roared right back with nine straight points of their own, including seven straight points from sophomore forward Sarah Walker (W. Hartford, CT), extending the lead back to 20, taking a 37-17 lead at the 13:45-mark.
Rist responded with a nifty driving layup on the Pioneers' ensuing possession, but Smith would manage only one field goal in the final 13:19 of play, with the Amherst defense turning in its best performance of the season. An 11-1 run, capped by an offensive rebound and put-back from sophomore forward Brooke Diamond (Longmeadow, MA) just inside the 4:00-mark, gave the Jeffs their largest lead of the game at 50-22, and Rist added a late jumper to account for the 50-24 final.
For the game, Taylor was the lone player in double-figures with 14, surpassing her previous career-best of 13 points set at New England College last February. The Jeffs outrebounded Smith by a 49-25 margin, led by 12 rebounds from Walker-who scored eight points-and 10 from Bergman, the fifth time this season that both starting forwards finished in double figures on the glass. Diamond finished with a solid four-point, six-rebound performance off the bench, and first-year forward Caitlin Farrell (Lafayette, CA) added six points, five rebounds and one blocked shot in 17 minutes.
For the Pioneers, Rist finished with a team-best nine points, despite shooting 4-15 from the field, while three other Smith players scored four points each. Smith's 24 points matched the second-lowest offensive output by an Amherst opponent in program history, as the Jeffs held an opponent to 50 points or fewer for the seventh time in 11 games.
With the win, the 99th career victory for McBride, the Jeffs improve to 9-2, and are next in action on Thursday, when they host the 9-1 Beavers of Babson College, currently the number-one team in New England according to Tuesday's New England Women's Basketball Association (NEWBA) regional poll.
Smith falls to 1-7, and is next in action on Thursday night, when they meet Amherst's Little III foe Wesleyan University.
Game Box Score