Since Hamilton College officially joined the NESCAC in all sports in 2011, Bates teams have had to make the dreaded trek to from Lewiston to Clinton, New York. A 400 mile drive, Google maps says that the trip should take a little more than 6 hours. The team broke up the travel by driving to Springfield, MA on Thursday night, and then finishing the drive to Hamilton College the next day. After playing a night game, the team left Hamilton at 8:30 on Saturday to drive to Middlebury for another game starting at 3 pm. Overall, senior co-captain, Allie Coppola ‘17 estimates that the team spent about 17 hours traveling.
However, something about these long drives must be therapeutic for Coppola, because the forward was balling over the weekend. In a 60-44 win against Hamilton, Coppola recorded 22 points and 10 rebounds. She followed this up with another impressive performance of 12 rebounds and a career high 27 points on an efficient 10-17 shooting in a loss against Middlebury.
“Allie has a great mindset and has really come to play since the semester break.” Coach Allison Montgomery wrote in an email. “She is playing with confidence and determination and is leading our team.” Coppola has now compiled four consecutive double-doubles, and is 0.2 rebounds away from averaging a double-double for the season. She ranks first in the NESCAC in rebounds per game, and fifth in points per game.
Although Coppola was dominant at times on offense, it was really the defense that propelled the Garnet and White to their victory against Hamilton. Nina Davenport ‘18, normally known for her ability on offensive side of the ball, had three steals. Coach Montgomery noted that Bernadette Connors ‘18 was also a standout, grabbing many rebounds and getting in the passing lanes for steals and deflections. In total, the Bobcats only gave up 44 points, including just 6 points in the fourth quarter.
Against Middlebury, it was the first and third quarters that hurt the Bobcats. They were outscored by 10 and 13 points respectively in the quarters. Despite Coppola’s performance, the team was unable to climb out of the early hole. Connors ‘17 filled the stat sheet with 10 points, seven rebounds, 2 assists, and 2 steals.
Women’s basketball is now 2-2 in NESCAC play and 5-10 overall , which certainly does not rule out a birth in the conference tournament. Games against Connecticut and Wesleyan next weekend will be very important and telling of the team’s outlook for the remainder of the season. However, both Coppola and Montgomery relayed the sentiment that the team is sticking with a one game at a time mindset.