AMHERST, Mass. – Connor Green scored a game-high 27 points and grabbed a career-high nine rebounds as No. 1 Amherst cruised to a 97-65 win against Anna Maria on Thursday night at LeFrak Gymnasium.
The Jeffs (5-0) extended their winning streak to 29 games dating back to last season while dropping the Amcats to 1-4 on the season.
Green continued his impressive shooting display Thursday night, hitting 4-of-7 from downtown and going 9-of-10 from the charity stripe. He was one rebound shy of his first career double-double. Joining him in double figures were seniors Aaron Toomey (16) and David Kalema (14), and first-year David George (10). Toomey went 6 for 8 from the floor, 3 for 4 from 3-point range, and dished out a game-high eight assists. Reid Berman registered a season-high nine points and tied a season-high five assists. As a team, the Jeffs shot 55.6 percent from the floor and 54.5 percent from downtown.
Three Amcats scored double figures with Kyle McKissick and Quantez Franklin posting 12 points each while Tyler Delorey added 10. Dorey was efficient from the floor, shooting 4-of-6 and 2 for 3 from behind the arc.
Both teams came out hot to start the game, exchanging baskets early and often after tip-off. At the 17:30 mark, George stole an errant Anna Maria pass and threw it down with a ferocious two-hand dunk to put Amherst up 8-6.
Following consecutive Jeff 3-pointers from Green and Kalema, respectively, Amherst pulled ahead by eight and forced the Amcats to call their first timeout.
At 11:34, George grabbed a defensive rebound and dished it out to Toomey. Toomey dribbled down the court and repaid George with a great bounce pass as he snuck past Anna Maria defenders and threw down another two-handed dunk.
Pedro Trindade kept Anna Maria in the game late in the half with a nice put-back followed by a floater over two Jeff defenders with just more than two minutes remaining. On their next possession, Kyle McKissick hit one from behind the arc to cut deficit to eight.
However, with seconds remaining, Toomey displayed some impressive ball-handling skills to drive past all Amcat defenders and get to the basket. With an open lane, he went straight to the hoop and made a layup with just three seconds left. He got fouled in the process and completed the three-point play as the Jeffs entered the break with a 52-39 lead.
Anna Maria jumped out to a quick 4-0 run to start the second half but it was all Amherst after that as Toomey and Green hit consecutive 3-pointers to give the top-ranked team in the nation a 17-point lead.
The Jeffs went on a 31-13 run in the first 12 minutes of the half and eventually pulled away to claim the 97-65 win. They held the Amcats to 10-of-27 shooting (37 percent) after they went 17-of-30 (56.7 percent) in the first.