NAPLES, Fla. – Juniors Garrett Day and Tim McCarthy came off the bench to lead the Mammoths' attack with 20 and 18 points, respectively, as the No. 20 Amherst College men's basketball team shot 62.5% from the floor in the first half to cruise past Baruch College, 89-63, Sunday afternoon at the D3 Naples Shootout hosted at the Community School of Naples.
With the victory, Amherst picks up its fourth straight win and improves to 7-2 on the season, while Baruch falls to 5-3 overall. The Mammoths are back in action tomorrow, Monday, December 30 when they close out the decade with an 8:30PM non-conference clash against the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater (4-5).
Last seeing competition on Dec. 12 in a 101-51 trouncing of Pine Manor, the Mammoths were ready to get back on the court after the 17-day break. Not showing any rust early, Amherst jumped out to an 8-0 lead in the first four minutes of play before doubling up the Bearcats, 20-10 in the final eight minutes before the break to take a 50-30 lead into halftime.
McCarthy and Eric Sellew '20 netted 15 and 10 points, respectively, in the first 30 minutes to combine for 25 of the Mammoths' 50 first half points. Holding a 26-9 advantage in points off the bench and a 15-4 edge in points off of turnovers, Amherst went a stellar 20-32 from the floor (62.5%) and 8-17 (47.1%) from beyond the arc in a dominant opening half.
One of four Bearcats to tally a point in the first half, Adnan Bajrami accounted for half of Baruch's points, totaling 15 points on 6-of-7 shooting, including a 3-3 mark from three-point range. Bajrami also added two steals and two rebounds before the break.
The second half proved to be more of a battle between the sides, with Amherst outscoring the home team, 39-33 en route to the 26-point victory.
Alongside Day and McCarthy, Fru Che '21 (17 points) and Sellew (10 points) reached double-digits on the scoresheet for the Mammoths, while Michael Schretter '22 picked up a game-high two blocks. An all-around team effort, Grant Robinson '21 led all players with eight assists, while Sellew's seven rebounds also stood as a contest high.
Bajrami finished the day with a team-leading 19 points and three steals for the Bearcats, while Michael Richards dished out four helpers. Emil Purisic (11 points) was the only other Bearcat to eclipse the 10-point mark, while Allen Villar rounded out Baruch's top-three with eight points.
At the final buzzer, Amherst stood at 34-66 shooting (51.5%), with a 13-33 mark (39.4%) from down town and an 8-13 mark (61.5%) from the free throw line. The Mammoths out-rebounded the Bearcats 40-30, including a 20-7 edge in the first half and a 14-8 edge in the offensive end, and owned a dominant 35-10 advantage in points off of turnovers and a 40-22 edge in points in the paint.
Baruch was 25-58 from the floor (43.1%) is the loss and finished 6-19 from beyond the arc (33.3%) and 7-8 from the stripe (87.5%).