Women's Basketball Falls in Sweet 16
Issue   |   Tue, 03/25/2014 - 23:08

The Amherst women’s basketball team’s quest for a 2014 NCAA Championship ended on Friday, March 14 in an overtime loss to Ithaca. Although the Jeffs beat Itacha in the regular season, Amherst fell just three points short in a hard fought battle.

Amherst controlled the game early, finding themselves up 25-13 in the middle of the first half. However, Ithaca battled back going on a 12-6 spurt and reduced the deficit to 31-25 with six minutes left in the first.

Starting off the second half with an 8-0 run, the Bombers gained their first lead of the game, 45-44, with 14:28 remaining in regulation. Ithaca continued pressuring the Jeffs, but Amherst was resilient until the end of regulation.

With just four minutes left in the game, Ali Doswell ’17 hit two consecutive three-pointers to give the Jeffs the lead. But an Ithaca jumper with 36 seconds left forced overtime.

The overtime period was very competitive, as Ithaca and Amherst exchanged the lead. A missed opportunity to take the lead forced the Jeffs to foul and lead to an Ithaca victory.

Although they did not pull out the win, many Jeffs still had impressive numbers in the game. Sophomore Marley Giddins was just one point shy of tying a personal record of 22 points, and matched a career-high 12 rebounds. Meredith Doswell ’17 contributed 14 points, while twin sister Ali added 13 points and a career-best of nine assists. Jaimie Renner ’17 was the only remaining Jeff to score in double-digits with 10 points.

As a team, the Jeffs shot 38.9 percent from the field, while the Bombers shot 44.1 percent. Ithaca held the Jeffs to a 51-37 rebounding edge, and outscored them 24-13 in second chance points.

While this is the first time since 2007-08 Amherst has not advanced past the Round of 16, the future remains bright for the young Jeffs.
They do not lose any players to graduation, allowing them to bring back the same chemistry next winter.

The Jeffs will look forward to the return of junior captain, and two-time All-NESCAC honoree, Megan Robertson, who missed the last 15 games of the season due injury.

“Losing in the Sweet 16 was disappointing,” said captain Cheyenne Pritchard ’16. “Losing is hard enough, but losing in overtime is a dagger. Ithaca played really well and made big shots when we didn’t, and you have to give them credit. But when we look back at how much adversity our team faced, and how much we accomplished, it was a pretty amazing season. The best part about it is we are all back next year with the same goal in mind: to win a national championship.”