2011 NESCAC Women's Basketball Championship
Saturday, February 19 Saturday, February 26 Sunday, February 27
at No. 1 AMH 57, No. 8 TRI 32
at No. 1 AMH 71, No. 4 WIL 64
at No. 1 AMH 72, No. 3 BOW 37
at No. 2 COL 67, No. 7 MID 64
No. 3 BOW 79, vs. No. 2 COL 63
at No. 3 BOW 69, No. 6 BAT 51
at No. 4 WIL 69, No. 5 TUF 64 - OT
Championship Seeding
Championship Preview
Championship Records 

Amherst Wins 2011 Women's Basketball Title

Amherst Wins 2011 Women's Basketball Title

Courtesy Amherst Sports Information

Box Score

AMHERST, Mass. – Amherst College used a dominant first-half performance from Caroline Stedman ’12 and an exceptional second-half showing from Jaci Daigneault ’11 to earn a 72-37 win over Bowdoin College in Sunday afternoon’s NESCAC Championship title game at LeFrak Gymnasium.

With their third conference crown in the past four years, the Lord Jeffs improve to 26-1 and earn an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. The Polar Bears, who had been 27-2 in conference championship play and 8-0 in NESCAC title games prior to Sunday, move to 22-5 and will hope to receive an at-large bid to the national tournament.

Amherst and Bowdoin have combined to win all 11 NESCAC titles since the conference's championship format began in 2001, with the Lord Jeffs claiming the 2008, 2010 and 2011 crowns. Amherst increased its overall win streak to 13 games and is now unbeaten in its past 45 home contests.

Amherst used a pair of three-pointers from Shannon Finucane '12 to build an early lead, pushing its advantage to 10 points (16-6) after a 7-0 run. Bowdoin managed only three points during an eight-minute stretch despite working hard on the glass and getting several second and third chances, as the Polar Bears shot only 23.8 percent (5-of-21) from the floor in the first half.

The Lord Jeffs began to take control in the final minutes of the opening period when Stedman knocked down three consecutive three-pointers to push Amherst's lead to 34-15. Bowdoin got the final point of the half on a free throw by Katie Bergeron '11, but Amherst carried a 34-16 advantage into the locker room with Stedman (17) singlehandedly out-scoring the visitors. The Jeffs pulled down nine offensive boards in the half, with the Bears grabbing eight of their own.

The first nine minutes of the second half featured a 13-4 run by Amherst, with Daigneault doing a little bit of everything for the Jeffs to account for 10 of those points. Amherst shut down the visitors and pushed its lead to 29 points on several occasions, finally bringing it to 30 (59-29) when Stedman buried another triple from the corner. The Polar Bears never got to within fewer than 26, as the Jeffs pulled away for the 72-37 win.

Stedman finished with a game-high 23 points and three steals, with Daigneault adding 19 points, seven rebounds and three steals of her own. Kim Fiorentino '12 led all players with a career-high seven assists to go along with her eight points, four boards and two blocks.

Bergeron led Bowdoin with 12 points, 10 of which came in the first half. Nicole Coombes '12 added eight points and pulled down a team-high seven rebounds. The Polar Bears turned the ball over 20 times and shot just 1-of-9 from three-point range, as they were held below 40 points for the first time all year.

Quarterfinals - Saturday, Feb. 19 at Higher Seeds
at No. 1 Amherst 57, No. 8 Trinity 32
at No. 2 Colby 67, No. 7 Middlebury 64
at No. 3 Bowdoin 69, No. 6 Bates 51
at No. 4 Williams 69, No. 5 Tufts 64 - OT

Semifinals - Saturday, February 26 at Amherst
at No. 1 Amherst 71, No. 4 Williams 64
No. 3 Bowdoin 79, vs. No. 2 Colby 63

Championship - Sunday, February 27
at No. 1 Amherst 72, No. 3 Bowdoin 37

Quarterfinals - Saturday, February 19
3:00 p.m. at Higher Seeds
No. 8 at No. 1
No. 7 at No. 2
No. 6 at No. 3
No. 5 at No. 4

Semifinals - Saturday, February 26
at Highest Remaining Seed
2:00 p.m./4:00 p.m.

Championship - Sunday, February 27
12:00 p.m.

The top eight teams in the conference will qualify for the NESCAC Basketball Championship.  First round games will be conducted on Saturday, February 19, 2011 with the semifinals and championship games conducted on Saturday, February 26 and Sunday, February 27, respectively.  The tournament champion will receive an automatic bid to the NCAA Division III Championship. 

Seeding will be based on final conference standings of round robin play.  The top four seeds will host quarterfinal games with the number one seed drawing the number 8 seed, the 7th seed will play at the 2nd seed, the 6th seed will play at the 3rd seed, and the 5th seed will play at the 4th seed.  Teams will be re-bracketed with the highest remaining seed after quarterfinal action hosting both the semifinal and final rounds.

Pairings will be announced Saturday, February 12.

Tie Breaking Procedures
Ties will be broken as follows:

Head-to-head result (if teams play each other more than once during the regular season, the game that appears on the league schedule will be the game that is counted).

If teams tied during the regular season, or there is a 3-way or more tie, the following tie breaking procedure will be used:

  • Best record among tying teams, against one another (head-to-head).
  • Most conference wins (in games that are part of the conference schedule and count toward league standings).
  • Comparison of results of conference games played against top 4 teams (including all teams at the 4th spot).
  • Comparison of results of conference games played against top 8 teams (including all teams at the 8th spot).
  • Comparison of results of conference games played against conference teams in rank order.
  • Comparisons shall be made one team at a time starting with the highest ranked team.
  • If the tie remains after comparing results against the highest ranked team, the results against the next team in rank order shall be used. This process is continued until a winner is determined.
  • Coin flip (or similar random action involving all tied teams).

Note: In case of ties among three or more schools, the criteria above will be applied in order until a team is (or teams are) separated.  At that point, the process begins anew (returning to the first criteria) with the remaining teams.  The process is continued until the tie is eventually broken.  In cases where only a random action will break the tie of three or more teams, the random action will be applied to all teams involved in the tie.  For example, if three teams are tied and only a random action (pulling names out of a hat) will break the tie, each name will be pulled and seeded in order of being pulled.  Also, in the event that there are two (or more) groups of teams tied at different spots in the standings and the only criteria left that can be used to break those ties is a coin flip/random action, the coin flip/random action used to break the tie of one group (to put teams in rank order) will not affect the tie breaking procedures of the other group(s) of tied teams.