Amherst College's Hannah Fox scored 17 points and the two-time defending NCAA Division III women's basketball national champions posted a 77-48 NESCAC win over the Hamilton College Continentals on Wednesday night at Amherst's LeFrak Gymnasium.
Amherst (22-2, 9-1 NESCAC) is ranked No. 4 in both the D3hoops.com and Women's Basketball Coaches Association Division III Top 25 polls. The Mammoths shot over 50 percent from the field, 47 percent from 3-point range and 71 percent from the charity stripe.
Liz Arnold '22 paced the Continentals (10-12, 0-10) with 11 points and added three rebounds -- all on the offensive glass -- and two steals. Arnold also finished 6-for-8 at the free-throw line. Marie Steiner '20 totaled 10 points with two 3-pointers, Kelcie Zarle '22 had nine points and three assists, and Halie Serbent '19 grabbed a team-high six rebounds.
Fox chipped in seven rebounds and four assists for the Mammoths. Madeline Eck scored 12 points and had five rebounds and three steals. Maeve McNamara netted 10 points, Meghan Sullivan scored nine and Jade DuVal tallied eight points and five rebounds.
Carly O'Hern '20 and Serbent scored over half of Hamilton's 14 points in the first quarter as the Continentals and Mammoths finished the first 10 minutes deadlocked at 14-14. Steiner and Serbent gave Hamilton a 4-0 lead before Sullivan put the home team on the scoreboard with a 3-pointer at 6:50, and her steal and layup at 6:34 gave Amherst the lead at 5-4. Hamilton took back the lead three times during the quarter. O'Hern swished a 3-point jumper to make the score 7-5 at 5:51, Serbent made the score 9-8 after she collected an offensive board and banked in a layup at 4:44, and Zarle knocked down a mid-range jumper at 1:49 for a 12-10 edge. O'Hern scored the last basket of the opening stanza with 45 seconds remaining.
McNamara opened the second quarter with back-to-back 3-pointers and kicked off a 16-2 run. Cam Hendricks completed the streak with a 3-pointer at 4:38 that gave the Mammoths a 30-16 cushion. Zarle got Hamilton back within 12 points at 32-20 with 2:23 left and O'Hern's jumper at 1:11 made the score 37-24 going into halftime.
Arnold and Steiner scored all of Hamilton's 10 points in the third quarter but the Mammoths finished with a 58-34 advantage as they outscored the Continentals 40-24 during the final two quarters. Amherst's largest lead was a 33-point margin, which was reached on a layup by Lauren Pelosi with 1:00 remaining. Hamilton scored the final four points with Arnold going 2-for-2 at the free-throw line at 41 seconds and a Kayla Glemaud '21 steal and Maura Smith '22 layup with 15 seconds on the clock.