AMHERST, Mass. – Amherst College began their 2018 NCAA Division 3 women's basketball tournament run with a 61-12 win over Becker College on Friday evening at LeFrak Gymnasium.
The Mammoths held Becker without a field goal in the second half, including an unblemished final quarter of play, improving to 28-0 on the year. Becker's season, which included a New England Collegiate Conference (NECC) championship, comes to an end.
Madeline Eck '20 had five of Amherst's 16 steals, along with ten points and five assists. Emma McCarthy '19 scored 11 points and Maeve McNamara '19 contributed seven points, four steals and three assists.
Amherst opened the game with two back to back Eck layups and would never trail. Following a Becker basket, the Mammoths used a 15-0 run to end the first quarter ahead 19-2, forcing 12 turnovers in the opening ten minutes.
The game saw a combined 50 turnovers between the two teams, with Becker giving the ball up 30 times.
Becker (18-11) managed just 3-29 (10.3%) from the field, with Cassidy Harrison the leading scorer with four points and three steals. Adrianna Dowdy grabbed nine rebounds to lead all players and had four steals of her own.
Amherst would continue the run that started with 8:42 left in the first and increase it to 20-0 to bring the score to 24-4 at the seven minute mark in the second quarter. They would take a 28-9 lead into the half.
The Mammoths picked up where they left off after halftime, opening the third on a 20-0 run. Becker stopped the run and broke the double digit mark on free throws with 3:39 left in the third, and Amherst led 48-11. The Mammoths did not allow a field goal to be made in the second half and allowed a total of three points in the final 20 minutes, all on free throw attempts in the third quarter.
Natalie Nardella '20 had a team-high eight rebounds, while Cam Hendricks '20 and Hannah Fox '20 scored eight points apiece. Kate Sullivan scored six points, grabbed four rebounds and had a block, a steal and an assist off the Amherst bench.
The host Mammoths advance to play Saint Joseph's College (ME) on Saturday at 6:00 pm in the regional final. The Monks (28-1) came from behind to beat UMass Boston in Friday's opening game.