Rookie Latham Leads Jeffs Past Mt. Holyoke in Season-Opener, 74-59

November 26, 2002 

AMHERST, MA - First-year forward Katie Latham (Wakefield, MA) came off the bench with a double-double 19-point, 11-rebound performance in her collegiate debut on Tuesday night as the Amherst women's basketball team won its home- and season-opener over non-league foe Mt. Holyoke College, 74-59. 

Junior forward Marissa McGuire (Minneapolis, MN) joined Latham in double figures in points (10) and rebounds (12), while junior sharpshooter Shannon Russell (Shrewsbury, MA) added 16 points and senior tri-captain point guard Sara Bozorg (Amherst, MA) finished with 10 points and a game-high seven assists. 

With its two veteran post players off the floor for much of the evening - senior tri-captain forward Sarah Walker (W. Hartford, CT) left in the first half with a bloody nose, while junior center Caitlin Farrell's (Lafayette, CA) minutes were severely limited by foul trouble - Amherst turned to the precocious Latham, who responded with 11 points and nine boards in the second half alone. 

Amherst led by as many as 19 after the break, but Mt. Holyoke used a 15-2 run cut the lead to just six points, 53-47, with 7:20 remaining. Senior guard Kara Bergeron (Houston, TX) and sophomore Sara Belding (Sebastopol, CA) keyed the Lyon comeback with clutch shooting and crisp passing on the perimeter. 

In desperate need of a bucket, Latham responded with a nifty drop-step move and was hacked in the act by Mt. Holyoke sophomore forward Caroline Brennan (Billerica, MA). The three-point play, and a pair of ensuing three-pointers by Russell and sophomore guard Kate Herlihy (Glens Falls, NY), jumpstarted a 14-3 flurry, all but sealing the game for the Jeffs. 

Mt. Holyoke, which fell to 1-2 with the loss, placed three players in double figures. Belding led the way with 17 points. Sophomore guard Maeve Barao (Norwell, MA) and senior center Jessica Justice (Doylestown, PA) added 13 and 12 points, respectively. 

Amherst returns to action Monday at 7 p.m. at non-conference rival WPI. 

Box Score / Play-by-Play