Mass. College Hoops: Amherst Celebrates Second NCAA Title (VIDEO)


Amherst College’s men’s basketball team capped their season with an NCAA championship on Sunday in Atlanta, Georgia, as the Lord Jeffs defeated Mary Hardin Baylor, 87-70.

Below is a video from Amherst’s YouTube channel, which features coach David Hixon congratulating seniors Willy Workman, Allen Williamson and Peter Kaasila, as well as the entire team on a successful campaign. Amherst ended its season with a 30-2 mark and 10-0 in NESCAC play, along with a 24-game winning streak, too.



Mass. College Hoops: D3 Conference Championships Roundup


Four more teams earned themselves spots in the upcoming Division III basketball tournament and below are the highlights from the NEWMAC and NESCAC championships.

Men’s Basketball

WPI 79, Springfield College 72 – Ryan Kolb scored a career-best 29 points, which helped the Engineers defeat the Pride in the New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) championship in Worcester. WPI’s Marc Coppola filled the stat sheet with 14 points, seven assists and five boards, while Zach Karalis netted 12 points off the bench. Springfield’s Robbie Burke connected on 7 of 13 shots from the field to conclude the contest with a team-high 18 points and nine boards.

Amherst College 74, Williams College 73 – Taylor Epley scored a game-high 22 points, but that wasn’t enough to fuel the Ephs as the Lord Jeffs defeated their rival in the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) championship by one tally. Allen Williamson paced Amherst with a team-best 17 points, while Peter Kaasila scored 14 points and pulled down eight boards.

Women’s Basketball

Babson College 66, Wellesley College 55 – Sarah Collins netted a career-best 32 points, which helped the Beavers claim their fifth consecutive NEWMAC championship. Babson led by 10 at the break, but Wellesley’s Malia Maier trimmed the deficit to three with a layup at 11:49. That would be the closest the Blue would get as Kristen Ferola‘s triple at 10:19 sparked the Beavers to go on a 14-7 run to secure the win. Ferola finished with 10 points, while Wellesley’s Leslie Leong concluded with a team-high 13 points off the bench.   

Amherst College 53, Williams College 38 – Marcia Voigt scored 19 of her game-best 21 points during the final session to lift the Lord Jeffs past the Ephs in the NESCAC championship. Voigt also recorded five rebounds, five steals and three assists, while teammate Megan Robertson concluded with 12 points, seven points and two blocks. Ellen Cook led Williams with a team-high nine points.

Mass. College Sports: Tuesday Night Roundup


There were some exciting and interesting outcomes in the college basketball and hockey world on Tuesday, and below are those game summaries.

Women’s Ice Hockey:

Northeastern University 4, Boston College 3 – Katie MacSorley’s eighth strike of the season proved to be the difference, as the Huskies skated past the Eagles and earned their 16th Boston Beanpot championship at historic Matthews Arena.

Harvard 3, Boston University 0 – Samantha Reber finished the Beanpot consolation match with three points (one goal, two assists), as the Crimson defeated the Terriers. The loss marked the first time Boston University had dropped two straight games this season and also the first time they’ve finished fourth in the tournament.

Men’s Basketball:

Holy Cross 66, Navy 57 – The Crusaders tallied 43 of their 66 points in the first half, which helped them go onto to defeat the visitors in Worcester. Justin Burrell led Holy Cross with a team-high 14 points, while Dave Dudzinski added 13 points and pulled down eight boards. The Crusaders are now 11-13 overall, 3-6 in the Patriot League.

St. Michaels 66, Bentley University 62 Jasper Grassa and Tyler McFarland combined for 44 points, but that wasn’t enough to help the Falcons get past the Purple Knights in Waltham.

Amherst College 104, Middlebury 101 (3OT) – Willy Workman scored 30 points; Peter Kaasila netted 29 points, and the Lord Jeffs outlasted the Panthers in triple-overtime to earn their 16th consecutive win.

Williams College 68, Trinity College 47 – Nate Robertson scored a game-high 19 points, which lifted the Ephs to their 23rd victory of the season.

Westfield State 77, Framingham State 59 – Tyrone Figueroa netted a game-high 31 points, but that didn’t help the Rams top the Owls on Senior Night. Lee Vasquez paced the visitors with 28 points and eight steals.

Women’s Basketball:

Bentley University 79, St. Michael’s 49 – Every member of the Falcons squad netted at least two points, as Bentley rolled past St. Michaels and claimed their 22nd win of the season. Kelsey Roberson paced the Falcons with 12 points, while Courtney Finn added 11 points.

Emmanuel College 71, St. Joe’s (CT) 40 – Fiona O’Dwyer filled the stat sheet with 24 points, five rebounds, three assists and one block, which helped the Saints win their 18th game of the season.

Suffolk University 67, Mount Ida College 48 – Jacqueline Vienneau finished the game with 20 points, seven rebounds, five assists, and five steals, as the Rams defeated the Mustangs in Boston.

Bridgewater State 87, Salem State 55 – The Bears picked up their seventh consecutive win by downing the Vikings in Bridgewater. Michaela Cosby filled the stat sheet with 19 points, six rebounds, six steals, three assists and one block, while Elisha Homich recorded 16 points, six assists, three steals and two boards.

East Nazarene 56, Curry College 52 (OT) – Kylie Beltz netted a game-high 19 points, but that wasn’t enough, as the Lions stunned the Colonels in Quincy.

Mass. College Hoops: NESCAC Preview (LINKS)

By Matt Noonan 

Our preseason basketball coverage continues with more links from the New England Small College Athletic Conference.

Three teams from Massachusetts (Amherst, Tufts and Williams) compete in this conference, so those are the links we’ve provided below.

Men’s Basketball

* Amherst College — After securing their fifth consecutive NESCAC crown, the Lord Jeffs season concluded in the third round of the March Madness tournament against Franklin & Marshal. This year, expect great things from  Aaron Toomey and Willy Workman, as well as Peter Kaasila and David Kalema. Amherst has a great deal of depth, which will certainly come in handy against Brandeis and Williams.

* Tufts University — Bob Sheldon knows what it takes to be successful, especially in a very competitive conference. Last season, the Jumbos concluded their campaign with 16-9 record, as well as a quarterfinal loss in the NESCAC tournament to Bates College. So, after this season last year, it’s expected that the men sporting the blue and white will be hungry for more wins this winter.

* Williams College — The Ephs will begin another season tomorrow when they host the Williams Tip-Off Tournament. Their first game is against So. Vermont. Williams will rely heavily on senior co-captains Nate Robertson and James Klemm.

Women’s Basketball

* Amherst CollegeThe 2012-13 season will certainly be an interesting one for the Lord Jeffs. Caroline StedmanLem Atanga McCormick and Kim Fiorentino all graduated, so that means some new players will have to step-up and fill the void immediately.

* Tufts University — Nine Letter-winners will anchor the Jumbos this season following their second straight trip to the March Madness tournament. Expect great things from Kate Barnosky and Bre Dufault this season.

* Williams College — Pat Manning knows that NESCAC is a tough conference year in and year out. So, to counter their competition, the Ephs will rely heavily on their senior class this winter.

Mass College Hoops Recap: Amherst 67, Williams 65 (Men’s)

By Matt Noonan 

WILLIAMSTOWN, MA – In case you haven’t subscribed to this so-called, “Amherst-Williams rivalry,” now’s the time.

In an epic dogfight on Wednesday evening in the northwestern part of the state of Massachusetts, the Lord Jeffs pulled out an epic 67-65 victory when sophomore Aaron Toomey, (16 points, three rebounds, three assists) sank two back-to-back free throws with less than five seconds remaining in regulation, which secured their 16th victory of the season.

“Every time you beat Williams at Williams or beat Williams in general, it’s always a big to do,” said Amherst head coach David Hixon. “

“It was certainly a slugfest, and two proud programs going toe-to-toe,” said Williams’ head coach Mike Maker.

Amherst began the game as they usually do with a few buckets, but Williams answered by finishing the half with 12 shots from the field.

Toomey led Amherst with 11 points in the first half, which included one three-pointer, and four free throws, as the Lord Jeffs entered the locker room with a 39-31 advantage.

“He’s great with the ball in his hands, he gets fouled a lot, he makes free throws, he wins games, so you trust him,” said Hixon, when asked to describe the play of Toomey.

However, once the second half began, Amherst’s offensive spark faded, which allowed Williams to begin an impeccable comeback.

Sophomore Michael Mayer helped the Ephs begin this “journey” with a layup, which was followed by a trifecta from sophomore Hayden Rooke-Ley.

The Ephs continued to chip away at the lead and came within three points when senior Brian Emerson slammed home a monstrous dunk with 5:19 remaining, which electrified the hometown crowd.

Yet, Amherst somehow found a way to rebuild their lead when junior Peter Kaasila, (16 points, six rebounds) added a layup before he sank a few free throws. Toomey added a handful of free throws, too, but Williams once again showed their resiliency when sophomore Taylor Epley connected on one of two foul shots, which tied the game, 65-65 with 14 seconds left.

Toomey then drew a foul during the closing seconds after Epley’s free throw, and made both of his free throws, despite a timeout that occurred between the first and second shot, which helped his team earn their first victory of the season against Williams College.

“[This] is something we haven’t done in close games this year so far, but we came out tonight, and the past week, we’ve had great practices, we’ve really came together as a team, and through that, we came together as a team at this game, and although we were missing shots early in the half,” said Toomey. “It’s all about 20 minutes, 40 minutes the whole game, 20 minutes in the second half, and that’s what it’s all about.”

“Our guys didn’t quit,” said Maker. “We have great kids, and I think they represent the program and institution the way it richly deserves to be presented and they’re not going to quit, down double-digits, and deep into the second half and to make a run like that on that talented of a basketball team [is quite impressive]. We had our opportunities to win, but the ball didn’t bounce our way.”

Amherst will cap off their four-game road trip on Saturday at Trinity, while Williams will head to Middlebury; both games are slated for 4:00pm.