AMHERST, Mass. – With a walk-off three-pointer by senior Johnny McCarthy at the first half buzzer, Amherst College took a double-digit lead against Connecticut College, and they rode that momentum into a 72-57 win on Friday night at LeFrak Gymnasium, their first New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) men's basketball win of the season.
Now victorious in their last two games, Amherst improves to 9-4 and evens their NESCAC mark at 1-1, while the Camels fall to 6-9 overall and 0-3 in the league.
McCarthy joined Joseph Schneider '19 and Michael Riopel '18 in double figures, as the trio led the Mammoths with ten points apiece. Eric Sellew '20 had eight points, a game-high nine rebounds, two blocks and a steal in the win.
The teams were nearly level from the floor (38%) and from the three-point line (30%), but Amherst had a 49-33 edge in rebounding and forced 22 turnovers.
The Mammoths raced out to a 21-9 lead, only to have the Camels run off ten straight points and eventually cut the deficit to just one on a jumber by Ben Bagnoli.
Both of McCarthy's three-pointers came in the final minute of the first half, as Amherst ended the stanza on a 9-2 run.
David Labossiere scored 11 points in the opening half and led all players with 16 points, while grabbing a team-high seven rebounds for Conn. College.
The Mammoths led by double-digits the entire second half, and increased their lead to a game-high 23 points when Garrett Day '21 converted a layup with 8:26 to play to push the score to 65-42.
Junior Phil Leotsakos scored four points in the first few minutes as the Camels took a 7-6 lead, but he was held in check for the rest of the night, and Amherst wouldn't trail again after Grant Robinson '21 gave them the lead with a layup.
Fru Che '21 had eight points for Amherst, all in the first half, while Josh Chery '20 added nine points and two assists off the bench. Robinson paced the Mammoths with four dimes, while Jack Zimmerman did likewise for the Camels.
Amherst will be back on their home court in less than 24 hours with a 3:00 pm game against #14 Wesleyan looming on Saturday afternoon.
Conn. College heads to New York to play at Hamilton tomorrow afternoon at the same time.