Lewiston, ME -The Williams College Ephs (15-0, NESCAC 4-0) overcame a 14-point deficit to defeat the Bates College Bobcats (4-12, NESCAC 1-3) 75-69.
With the win the 2018-19 Ephs set a program record for most wins to open a season breaking the previous high of 14 set by the 1954-55 and 2002-03 teams.
The big difference in the first half was the turnover differential. The Ephs had 10 miscues to the Bobcats 4, and the Bobcats took advantage of the Eph turnovers scoring 17 points off of turnovers in the first half.
With 2:22 left in the first half the Ephs were down 34-21, but the Ephs would hit back-to-back threes to swing momentum their way and bring the Bates' lead down to seven going into the half, 34-27.
The Ephs were shooting an uncharacteristic 31% from the field and 25% from behind the arc. Bobby Casey, Marc Taylor, and Matt Karpowicz led the scoring for the Ephs with six apiece. Kyle Scadlock led the team in rebounding with six after the first 20 minutes of play. The Bobcats were shooting 36.1% from the field and 33.3 % from behind the arc. Andrew Snoddy led the Bobcats in scoring with 8 points and was followed by Jeff Spellman with 7 points.
The Ephs continued the momentum from the later minutes of the first half and went on an early 11-2 run to take a 2-point lead over the Bobcats, 38-36 with just under 16 minutes left to play.
"I thought a big reason we had success this weekend was Marc taylor's energy off of the bench. He was playing with confidence," said Eph head coach Kevin App. "Henry [Feinberg] brings that to our starting unit, and then Marc comes in and cleans it up. Coupled with Michael Kempton's poise and Marcos Soto's' veteran leadership as well. I thought out rotational bench guys were phenomenal all weekend."
Bobby Casey got in his groove during the second half of play, scoring 17 points and keeping the Ephs ahead of the Bobcats for the remainder of the contest, and securing a 75-69 win.
The Ephs finished shooting 39.3% from the field and 29.7% from behind the arc. They were led by Bobby Casey (23 Points, 6 Rebounds, 5 Assists) and Kyle Scadlock (15 points, nine rebounds, two assists). Marc Taylor had a great performance off of the Bench with 11 points. The Bobcats shot 37.7% from the field and 34.3% from behind the arc. Tom Coyne finished with a game-high 24 points.
"I thought it was a gutty Saturday on the road type win against a well-coached team that was prepared and played at a high level,"commented Ap., "I was proud of our guys for the way they responded after the first half didn't go how we intended it to go."
The Ephs next game will be on January 16th at 7 p.m. when they head over the mountains to the east to play arch rival Amherst College.