Looking Back at Another Year of Sports Successes: Fall
Issue   |   Fri, 05/24/2013 - 13:49

Field Hockey

The Lady Jeffs’ 11-5 season nearly ended in a NESCAC crown. After an exhilarating, double-overtime win at Trinity in the conference semifinals, the underdog Jeffs traveled to Middlebury for the championship game. They found themselves in another overtime thriller; this time, however, they were on the wrong end of the decision, as the Panthers came away with the win and the league title.

In fact, four of the Jeffs’ five losses on the year came in overtime, ample proof that the team was competitive in every game it played. Had just one more play gone the team’s way, it may well have received a berth in the NCAA tournament.
Of the squad’s four seniors, none proved more valuable than Katie McMahon, who led the squad in total points and was the principal offensive stalwart all season long.

She will be gone in the fall of 2013, but several key players will return, including two-sport athlete and All-American Alex Philie ’14 and goalie Rachel Tannenbaum ’15. The Lady Jeffs will look to avenge their near miss this year with a title.

Football

The football team went 6-2 in their 2012 season with wins against Hamilton, Bowdoin, Colby, Wesleyan, Tufts and Williams.
The homecoming game was especially memorable as it was the final game on Pratt Field, and Amherst topped their archrivals with a thrilling come-from-behind 23-20 win. This game was also the final game for the Class of 2013, which proved to be one of the winningest classes in Amherst football history as the 14 seniors have a record of 28-4 over the past four seasons.

Six of these seniors received All-NESCAC honors. Offensive lineman John Ceccio ’13 earned his third-consecutive first team selection, and defensive players Travis Dickenson ’13 and Michael Aldo ’13 were also chosen for the first team. Defensive lineman, Matthew Sponheimer ’13, inside linebacker Sam Clark ’13 and wide receiver James Durham ’13 all earned second team honors.

Finishing third in the NESCAC, Amherst had an overall successful season and will miss their seniors next season.

Women’s Soccer

The Amherst women’s soccer team had a great fall 2012 season, finishing 13-2-2 overall and 8-1-1 in the NESCAC.

The team’s only losses came from Williams in the regular season and Lasell in the first round of the NCAA championship. The 3-2 loss to the Williams was extremely heartbreaking as the Lady Jeffs had been up 2-0 before the Ephs scored three unanswered goals, two of which came in the final 24:05 of the game.

The 3-1 loss to Lasell cut Amherst’s season short as the team will say goodbye to five remarkable seniors.

Both Kathryn Nathan ’13 and Sandy Shepherd ’13 were picked for the NEWISA Senior Bowl, while Nathan was also selected for the NSCAA/Continental Tire All-America second team and Shepherd earned an All-Region Selection. Nathan was named to the D3soccer.com All-American Team as well.

Despite losing a strong senior class, the team’s first-year class, led by Jessy Hale, Megan Kim and goalkeeper Holly Burwick, hopes to continue the success next season.

Men’s Soccer

The Amherst men’s soccer team had a remarkable fall 2012 season, capturing their second straight NESCAC title before falling to archrival Williams in the NCAA Quarterfinals.

With talented first-year Thomas Bull protecting the net, Amherst had 15 shutout wins, zero losses and three ties.
Their three meetings against Williams proved to be their most competitive contests. The first one ended in a brutal 0-0 tie after double overtime, as Amherst had six shots on goal but could not connect.

The second match-up came in the NESCAC finals where Amherst triumphed with a 2-0 win with the goals from Jae Heo ’14 and James Mooney ’13.

The third game came in the national tournament, NCAA Quarterfinals, where Amherst fell to Williams in a heartbreaking loss that ended with penalty kicks.

This season was historic for the Jeffs as they set single-season program records for both number of wins and goals.

Captain Spencer Noon ’13 received a number of accolades as he was named to the Capital One Men’s Soccer Academic All-America second team as well as the NSCAA/Continental Tire NCAA DIII Men’s All-America first team. Noon is also the first person in the program’s history to surpass the 100-point plateau.

Volleyball

The Amherst volleyball team had a solid fall 2012 season going 14-9 overall and 7-3 in the NESCAC.

The team recorded nine 3-0 shut out wins, with Lizzie Ahern ’16 leading the team in kills. Ahern was ranked third in the NESCAC in kills and was the first Amherst rookie to earn All-NESCAC honors since 2000.

Nicole Carter ’16, another talented freshman, led the team in assists with 699. In one of the team’s most thrilling matches of the season, the two underclassmen and Lauren Antion ’15 helped lead the Firedogs to a victory over NESCAC champion Middlebury on the team’s senior night.

Ahern had a match-high 19 kills and Antion added 17 more as Amherst defeated Middlebury 3-2.

Even though the Lady Jeffs did not qualify for the NCAA tournament and are losing four seniors, the team has a talented group of first-years to help lead next season.

Cross Country

Women

The women’s cross country team had a very successful 2012 season as they qualified for the NCAA National Championship in Terre Haute, Ind.

Senior captain Keri Lambert had a phenomenal season finishing in the top three individuals for every race she ran.
Lambert placed first overall in four meets, including the NESCAC Championship and the NCAA Regional Championship. Her college career culminated in the NCAA National Championship where she finished third overall.

Fellow senior captain, Lauren Almeida, and All-NESCAC Lizzy Briskin ’15 both had solid seasons as well, consistently finishing second and third for the team.

In the Little III Championship, Briskin finished ninth and Almeida was close behind in 10th. The two also had strong showings in the NESCAC Championship with Briskin in 14th overall and Almeida in 16th.

Despite losing Lambert and Almeida next year, Amherst looks to continue its success with a talented first-year class, featuring Anna Berglund, Betsy Black, Keelin Moehl, Caroline Rose, Lexi Sinclair, Sarah Foster and Rachel Duong.

Men

The men’s cross country team had a slow start to their 2012 fall season but finished on a high note, placing first out of 43 in the ECAC DIII Championship and 11th out of 50 in the NCAA Regional Championship.

The sophomore class had a stellar season as KC Fussell, Romey Sklar and Greg Tirissini led the team in many of their races. In the Little III Championship, Turissini place sixth overall with Fussell close behind in eighth, while in the ECACs, Sklar finished fifth overall out of 287 runners.

Seniors captains, Andrew Erksine, Dillon Buckley and Patrick Grimes all had great seasons as well to end their college careers. In the NESCAC Championship, Erksine finished 16th, and Grimes finished 39th to lead Amherst.

Buckley’s most notable race was when he finished third in the ECAC Championship. Jeff Seelaus ’16 and Scott Gemmell-Davis ’16 led the first-year class of runners and look to contribute more next season.

Tennis

Women

The Lady Jeffs topped Williams on Oct. 6, 6-3, behind the strong play of doubles partners Jordan Brewer ’14 and Sue Ghosh ’16 as well as Caroline Richman ’13 and Safaa Aly ’15. In singles action, Brewer and Richman notched key wins, as did juniors Jen Newman and Zoe Pangalos.

Following their defeat of the Ephs, the Lady Jeffs took part in the New England Women’s Intercollegiate Tennis Tournament (NEWITT). Once again, Brewer and Ghosh shone as a doubles tandem and, after dropping just two matches all weekend, eventually took home the championship.

Notably, Brewer, along with classmate Gabby Devlin, also won the doubles championship at the Stony Brook Women’s Tennis Classic earlier in the fall. In singles play, she also reached the semifinals at the ITA Regionals.

Men

The Jeffs’ best showing of the fall came at the ITA Regionals, an event that was disrupted by rain and eventually moved indoors. There, in the singles semifinals, first-year Ben Fife defeated senior teammate Mark Kahan ’13. Fife would play another teammate, Andrew Yaraghi ’16, in the finals, with Yaraghi eventually prevailing.

After a pair of tough road losses to Johns Hopkins and Carnegie Mellon, the squad took on Wesleyan on Oct. 13 and cruised to an 8-1 victory. A pair of first-years, Aaron Revzin and Michael Solimano, won a tight No. 1 doubles match for the Jeffs, which gave the team all the momentum it needed.

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