Brooke Diamond Tabbed Inside Lacrosse National Player of the Week

May 2, 2001

AMHERST, Mass. - Sophomore Amherst College women's lacrosse goalkeeper Brooke Diamond (Longmeadow, MA) was named the Inside Lacrosse National Division III Player of the Week on Tuesday, after turning in a career performance to help the Jeffs upend arch-rival Williams College in a thrilling, 8-7 double-overtime game in Williamstown last Saturday. Diamond, who splits time between the pipes with Jeff senior Jess Thaxton (Wayland, MA), is the third different Amherst player to receive the national honor this season, after seniors Sarah Scheessele (Pittsburgh, PA) and Kristin Osborn (Morristown, NJ) earned the distinction in consecutive weeks in March. 

Diamond, who stopped 58.6 percent of the shots she faced en route to a 6.12 goals-against-average as a rookie, has improved in both categories during a stellar sophomore season, boasting a NESCAC-low 5.06 goals-against-average through 14 games, stopping 63.4 percent of the shots she's faced along the way. The starting goalie each of her first two seasons for the Amherst women's soccer team, Diamond has come off the bench in key spots time and again for the 2001 women's lacrosse squad, and she was called on again just 12:18 into Saturday's showdown of top-four teams at Williams, after the fourth-ranked Ephs took an early 3-1 lead on Thaxton and the second-ranked Jeffs. 

The sophomore, also a fixture on Amherst's women's basketball team, allowed only one Williams goal during the final 18 minutes of the opening half, stopping a pair of point-blank free-position attempts to keep the Jeffs in the game. Amherst rallied for two goals late in the first half, including a tally from sophomore Mary Kate Allen (Springfield, MA) with just 11 ticks let on the scoreboard, to cut the Eph lead to 4-3 at the intermission. 

After halftime, Diamond was just as stellar posting four key saves in the early stages of the second half. The Ephs took a 5-3 lead 5:09 into the half, but that would be Williams' only goal in the first 18 minutes after the intermission, as Amherst rallied to tie the game at five. Down the stretch, the two teams traded dramatic goals, with Williams scoring to take a 6-5 lead, Amherst scoring two straight for a 7-6 advantage, and the Ephs tying the game at seven with just over two minutes left in regulation. 

In overtime, Diamond came through again, coming through with her career-high 11th save of the game late in the second half of the first extra period to help send the game to sudden-death. There, the Jeffs needed only 64 seconds to take the win, with Scheessele firing a left-handed shot past Williams goalie Abi Jackson (Jamaica Plain, MA) to give the visitors the dramatic overtime victory. 

For the game, Diamond finished with 11 stops in 52 minutes of action, allowing four of Williams' seven goals. With the win, the Jeffs improved to 12-1 on the season, and locked up the second seed in the inaugural NESCAC women's lacrosse championship, where they defeated seventh-seeded Connecticut College 16-5 in Tuesday's quarterfinals. The Ephs, who took the third seed with their second loss in as many games, destroyed sixth-seeded Bates College by a 21-3 count on Tuesday, setting up a rematch Saturday afternoon at top-ranked Middlebury College. 

Diamond, who did not even pick up NESCAC weekly honors for her performance, joins Osborn and Scheessele as the third different Amherst player to be named national player of the week this season. Scheessele earned the honor after scoring a game-high four goals in the Jeffs' season-opening 12-7 win at Mary Washington College, now the number-six team in the country, while Osborn picked it up one week later after leading Amherst to a 9-7 win at Salisbury State University, now the number-five team in the country, and a dramatic 8-7 victory at the then top-ranked College of New Jersey two days later.