Around the Herd: Feb. 7 to Feb. 13 in Athletics

Men’s basketball wins against Colby College but loses to Bowdoin; Women’s ice hockey dominates against Curry College; Casie Eifrig ’25 breaks 400m school record again in Hemery Valentine Invitational.

Around the Herd: Feb. 7 to Feb. 13 in Athletics
Men‘s Hockey heads into their NESCAC tournament with back to back wins against Tufts and Conn College. Photo courtesy of Clarus Studios.

Men’s Basketball

In LeFrak Gymnasium this past Friday, the men’s basketball team defeated the Colby College Mules, behind a late-game takeover by Bobby Sommers ’25. The first half of the game was mostly uneventful, although an impressive 46.7 percent three-point shooting night for the Mammoths allowed them to coast to a 40-33 first half lead. From the beginning of the third quarter, Colby immediately sought to strike back, catching the Mammoths on their heels with a 8-2 run to cut the lead 42-41. The Mammoths were quick to respond with their own 7-0 run. The game continued with both teams striking back and forth until Colby was in the lead by three points with 1:26 left. Sommer took matters into his own hands, scoring two extremely tough layups to pinch the lead for the enthusiastic home crowd. After a few trips to the free throw line, the game ended 66-64, improving the team’s record to 14-9.

On Senior day the following evening, however, the Mammoths were upset by the 8-15 Bowdoin College Polar Bears. Amherst was mostly losing throughout the game but an early second half effort pushed them to 61-59 lead with 58.8 seconds left. Nevertheless, Bowdoin struck back with six unanswered points to take the game 65-61. In his last game at LeFrak, Senior Dan Schlakman ’24 tied his career-high 14 points along with four rebounds, a block, and a steal.  

The Mammoths will face Connecticut College in the quarterfinal of the NESCAC tournament this Saturday in New London at 1 p.m.  

Women’s Basketball

The women’s basketball team beat the Colby College Mules 64-59 this Friday behind a 25 point double-double by Kori Barach ’25 — her sixth one this season. The Mammoths got off to a rough start, but a 14-2 run at the start of the second quarter propelled them to the lead. Still, Colby would not let go, running away with a nine point lead by the end of the third quarter. Then, Amherst put their foot on the gas, though only shooting 1-5 from the three point line, they continued earning easy layups through efficient ball movement. They outscored the Mules 27-13 in the fourth quarter, even outscoring their own first half total of 26 points. The victory improved their record to 19-4.

Their second game against the Bowdoin College Polar Bears also did not start well, and this time, they never made a comeback. The Amherst team is likely only second to the 21-2 Polar Bears this season, but the marquee matchup never lived up to expectations as Bowdoin led by 10 points at the half, and then blew the game up with a 22-2 run to start the third quarter, never looking back. In the worst loss of the season, the game ended with a score of 67-33, hurting their record to 19-5, and ending a six-game win streak.

The Mammoths will head to Vermont on Saturday to face Middlebury College in the quarterfinal of the NESCAC tournament at 7 p.m.

Men’s Ice Hockey

The men’s hockey team recorded an impressive weekend, with two victories against Tufts and Conn College.

Their game against the Jumbos went down to the wire, with both teams scoring back and forth, barely letting each other any time with the lead. Nevertheless, with five minutes left in the third period Tufts was winning 4-3. That is, until Matt Vander Vort ’27 was able to find the net, sliding the puck in after rebounding Andrew Carmody ’26’s long range attempt. The game was still tied after regulation, but within a minute of overtime, Josh Burke had already scored, making it 5-4 and Tufts never responded.

On Saturday, the mood was much less tense, as Amherst breezed by the mediocre 9-10-2 Connecticut College Camels. After a scoreless first period, Ben Ritter ’26 and Connor McGinnis ’24 opened up the scoring with a pair of goals. Though the Camels responded with a goal of their own by the end of the second period, the Mammoths’ intensity never really wavered, as they flung five scores in a row to blow up the lead to 7-1. Conn College scored two goals at the end of the game, but Amherst confidently left Saturday afternoon with a 7-3 victory, improving their record to 13-8-1.

They will begin their NESCAC tournament campaign this weekend.

Women’s Ice Hockey

The women’s hockey team continued their streak of dominance, as they coasted through their game against Curry College on Friday night. It only took 46 seconds for Alyssa Xu ’25 to put the Mammoths up a goal, and after Julia Weiss ’25 and Ellie DeCarlo ’24 put up two of their own by the midway point of the second period, the Colonels decided to immediately answer back to cut the lead to 3-1. Nevertheless, Amherst’s confidence remained, and with an easy control of the game they grew their lead to 5-1 by the end, pushing their record to an extremely impressive 18-2-2.

This weekend they will face Williams College in two back-to-back matches with the first in Williamstown, and the second this Saturday in Orr Rink at 7:30 p.m.

Men’s Squash

The men’s squash team was eliminated from the NESCAC tournament, after losing to Colby College 4-5 in the quarterfinal this past weekend. None of the matches were close, with only two of them playing four games or more. Yeshwin Sankuratri ’24 recorded an 11-1 game in his 3-0 win in the sixth seat.

The Mammoths will begin their national campaign this Friday in the quarterfinal of the Hoehn Cup against Franklin and Marshall College.

Women’s Squash

In the NESCAC tournament quarterfinal, the women’s squash team fell to Williams College 4-5, after having beaten them only a week prior. The close loss proved to be the result of weak squad depth yet again, as the top four Amherst seats handedly won their matches, but with the bottom five seats recording only two game wins out of 17 played.

Still, the Mammoths will have yet another opportunity against the Ephs in the quarterfinal of the Kurtz Cup in Philadelphia this upcoming weekend.

Men’s Track and Field

This past weekend, the men’s track and field team participated in the Hemery Valentine Invitational at Boston University (BU), as well as the Middlebury College Field and Track Meet in Vermont.

At BU, Tom Ye ’25, Parker Boyle ’27, Josh Thomas ’27, and Stan Craig ’27 recorded a top 10 time in the DIII with a time of 10:08.66 in the distance medley relay. Adrian Friedman ’24 beat out five DI high jumpers with a mark of 6.70m — a season best for the senior.

In Vermont, both David Brown ’25 and Alex Robin ’25 won their events, recording 13.87m in the shot put, and 1.85m in the high jump, respectively. The win was Brown’s fifth of his college career while this was Robin’s first collegiate victory. Oliver Spiva ’24 broke his personal record, with a time of 4:29.90 in the mile.

Amherst will compete in the Triangle Classic this Saturday at Springfield College.

Women’s Track and Field

The women’s track and field team competed in both the Hemery Valentine Invitational and the Middlebury Field and Track Meet.

The invitational started off with a bang, as Casie Eifrig ’25 broke the 400m school record for the second time this year, posting a time of 57.40. And, with a time that is fit for the top twenty nationally, Julia Schor ’25 broke her personal best in the mile, clocking in at 4:57.83.

At Middlebury, in another win for the class of 2025, Anya Thomas ’25 won the 60m hurdles in 9.35 seconds, her first collegiate track victory — before then winning both the triple jump and the high jump with marks of 10.85m and 1.62m, respectively. After winning the event last year, Muffie Mazambani ’24 won the long jump again, recording 5.34m in the process. Mia Bawendi ’24 won her first indoor pole vault event against a group that held D-I athletes, with a mark of 3.55m.

The team will go to Springfield College this weekend for the Triangle Classic.