CLINTON, N.Y. -- Mike Mayer scored 24 points and Taylor Epley added 14 Sunday as the Williams College men's basketball team rallied from an eight-point deficit to post a 67-59 win over conference rival Hamilton.
The 10th-ranked Ephs improved to 15-1 overall and 5-0 in the conference while Hamilton slipped to 7-9, 1-4 in the NESCAC. Williams is at archrival Amherst Wednesday night for a 6 p.m. contest.
"It's very difficult to win in any league on the road," Ephs coach Mike Maker said. "Hamilton is extremely well coached, they are tough and they take care of the ball. I thought this was as good as any win we've had this year, I'm very proud of the guys and the way they responded."
Williams trailed by three at the half and eight with 16:42 left in the game, but battled back to take the lead ona three-pointer by Epley off the left wing with 10:03 to go. Two possessions later, Epley drained another trey from a 52-48 advantage. Williams never trailed again.
A three-pointer from the top of the key by Hamilton first year Mike hart — who scored a game-hgh 25 points — cut the deficit to one, but a big steal by Daniel Wohl, who netted 13 points in the win, led two an intentional foul on Hamilton's Greg Newton.
Wohl hit both freebies and on the ensuing Williams position, Mayer hit a short jumper from the paint for a 5-point lead. After an Epley rebound on the defensive end, Mayer was fouled in the paint and knocked down both free throws for a 58-51 advantage with 5:25 to go.
After a Hart drive cut the Ephs advantage to five, it ballooned to nine after James Klemm, who netted 10 points, hit a short jumper. Following a Hamilton turnover, Mayer put home another lay-in for a 62-53 lead with 337 left. It was the Ephs' biggest lead of the game.
After shooting just 37 percent (10 of 27) from the floor in the first half, the Ephs were much sharper in the second, connecting on 59.1 percent (13 of 22). They also held a slim 18-15 advantage on the glass over the final 20 minutes after losing that battle in the first half.
"I thought we did a nice job defensively," Maker said. "I think we're second or third in the country in defensive field goal percentage and we guarded well again today. We take a lot of pride on that end of the floor."
The first half was a back and forth affair with Williams biggest lead being five and Hamilton's being three when Eric Benvenuti knocked down a three from the right corner as the halftime buzzer sounded.