Despite Amherst’s Comeback Win Over Tufts, Upsets Are Likely Heading Into D-III Tourney

Feb. 11 marked the 20th anniversary of a huge upset in sports history and arguably the biggest in the history of boxing. What's funny — or what makes me feel old — is that many of today's collegiate hoopsters weren’t even born when this momentous incident occurred.

This landmark upset got me thinking about how this is a stressful time for teams that have postseason aspirations. 

On the night of Feb. 11, 1990, in Tokyo, Mike Tyson was knocked out by a virtual unknown, a 42-1 long shot named James "Buster" Douglas. No one in his right mind imagined the great Iron Mike would ever kiss the canvas, much less lose the title. However, it does remind us that on any given night, anything can happen. Just ask the 2007 Patriots, the 1985 Georgetown Hoyas or the 1980 Soviet Union hockey team.

Am I going to pick an upset here? No, because the coach in me doesn't want to be accused of providing bulletin-board material for anyone. But as the D-III conference tournaments draw near, I am sure you will see an upset or two that could deflate a team’s chance of playing in the NCAA Tournament.

Kicking it for cancer
Onto a serious note, one game a year, the men's coaches wear sneakers for Coaches for Cancer. In a related note, in the last few years, women’s teams occasionally wear pink uniforms. The women, as I am sure you all know, wear the pink to raise awareness for breast cancer. 

The matriarch of this is Kay Yow, the late coach at North Carolina State. Yow battled this disease hard until the end. Sadly, she had to battle many times as she suffered relapses. Yow, many feel, is the "female Jim Valvano."  What you may not know is that she had a Hall of Fame coaching career in which she notched 737 wins and an Olympic gold medal.

Speaking of the Olympics, I have decided to award gold, silver and bronze to the latest games of the week.

Men’s Bronze
Wheelock 66, Daniel Webster 65
Wheelock’s Sherard Robbins was fouled with 0.3 left on the clock and hit the second free throw to give the Wildcats the win.

Men’s Silver
Tufts 69, Amherst 68
The Jumbos rallied from 10 points down in the second half and went on to snap an eight-game losing streak as they defeat Amherst for the first time since the 2003-04 season. 

Men’s Gold

Norwich 60, Suffolk 59
Cori Boston caught a full-court pass and laid it up and in at the buzzer to give Norwich the victory.

Women’s Bronze
Bates 71, Tufts 55 
A huge upset by the Bobcats. Junior Jessie Igoe had a career-high 22 points and 11 rebounds in the upset.

Women’s Silver 
Colby 74, Williams 68 (OT)
Williams’ Chessie Jackson had 20 points, but the balanced attack of Colby, which had four players in double-figures, proved to be the difference. Rachel Mack had 15 for Colby.

Women’s Gold
No. 1 Amherst 65, No. 10 Tufts 56
Rarely do you see a battle of top-10 teams, and this one was everything as advertised. Tufts actually led 28-22 at the half, but Amherst flexed its muscles and outscored Tufts 43-28 to stay unbeaten and remain No. 1 in the nation. 

Milestones
Special congrats to Iman Davis of Emmanuel, who became the school’s all-time leading scorer and the GNAC’s all-time leading scorer as well. And check this out: Davis has more than 700 rebounds and more than 350 assists and steals. 

Also making the all-time list for her school is Coast Guard’s Melissa Martinelli, who has become the all-time leading rebounder in addition to her ownership of the all-time scoring title.

Connecticut College’s Shavar Bernier broke the 3-point record as he knocked down his 202nd career basket from behind the arc.

Colleen Hart
of Tufts became the second-fastest to reach 1,000 points in Tufts women’s history.

Monica White of Rivier notched her 1,000th point against Albertus Magnus.

Clark’s Jillian Camilleri also hit a grand in a 79-59 loss to Wheaton.

Llaria Schiano of St. Joseph’s (Conn.) became the fourth-leading Blue Jay scorer of all time when she reached the same 1,000-point plateau against CCNY.

Simmons' Stephanie Fox joined the club during an 81-73 win over Mt. Ida.

Smith’s Berit Schelde became the ninth member of the Smith 1,000-point club during a thrilling 61-60 win over Clark.

Bridgewater State’s Judah Jackson became the 25th member of  the men’s program to hit the four-digit point mark in a 74-70 win over Worcester State.

Ryan Wilcox became Nichols' 23rd member of the 1,000-point club during a 77-67 win over Eastern Nazarene.

Coach Cherise Galasso won her 150th at WPI.

Worcester State’s Karen Tessmer won No. 200 with a 46-43 win over Westfield State.

Local schools in the D-III Top 25

Women

Amherst (No. 1)
Tufts (No. 20)

Men
Williams (No. 2)
Middlebury, (No. 6)
MIT (No. 11)

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