AMHERST, Mass. – Freshman Austin Hutcherson was a perfect 5-of-5 from three-point range and finished with a game-high 19 points, and seniors JR Bascom and Nathan Krill each recorded double-doubles to help lead the 14th-ranked Wesleyan University men's basketball team to an impressive road win over Little Three archrival Amherst College, 70-66.
Wesleyan has now won four-straight against its rival and five of its last six meetings dating back to the 2014-15 season. With the win, the Cardinals improve to 11-3 overall and 2-2 in the NESCAC while the Mammoths drop to 9-5 and 1-2.
FIRST HALF HIGHLIGHTS:
- A three from Michael Riopel at the 17:59 mark put Amherst ahead 5-0 but the Cardinals responded with an 8-2 run to claim the lead just over a minute later.
- From that point on, the first half went back-and-forth often and featured nine lead changes and three ties.
- Trailing by two (31-29) with 1:36 remaining in the half, a three from Nathan Krill '18 followed by a layup from JR Bascom '18 gave the visitors a 34-31 halftime lead.
- Hutcherson led all scorers with nine at the break while Bascom tallied six points and seven rebounds. Johnny McCarthy led Amherst with seven points in the first half.
SECOND HALF HIGHLIGHTS:
- The second half was a similar story early on as the two rivals continued to go back-and-forth. However, the Cardinals pulled away late.
- Wesleyan, trailing 50-48 at the 10:44 mark, went on an 11-0 run capped off by a pair of free throws by Jordan Sears '18 to give the Cardinals a nine-point advantage (59-50) with 5:27 to play.
- With 1:26 on the clock, Bascom went to the line and hit both shots to give the Cardinals a 67-55 lead—the largest by either team.
- The Cardinals outscored Amherst 19-5 from 10:29-to-1:26.
- Amherst didn't back down easily, however, and got within four following a layup from Josh Chery, but it was too late as only :15 remained on the clock.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS:
- Four players scored in double-figures for Wesleyan. Joining Hutcherson were Krill with 14, and Bascom and David Dixon '20 with 10 each. Bascom and Krill each secured 10 rebounds as well to record double-doubles while Krill dished out a game-high three assists.
- McCarthy finished with a team-high 14 points while Riopel dropped 12. C.J. Bachmann scored eight points off the bench and Chery finished with seven and a team-high seven boards. Joseph Schneider blocked four shots and Grant Robinson dished out three assists.
- The game featured 13 lead changes and six ties.
- Wesleyan outrebounded Amherst 42-38.
- Wesleyan returns to the court Thursday, Jan. 18 to play at non-conference foe Johnson & Wales at 7:30 p.m. The Cardinals' next NESCAC game will be Saturday, Jan. 20 at home against Conn. College (3 p.m.).