Cardinals Down Tufts for Second Time This Season, 9-0, to Make History with First-Round NESCAC Win - End Up in Eighth Place
Wesleyan's freshman-ladened squad made program history Fri., Feb. 4 at Trinity in the first round of the annual NESCAC Championship. Defeating Tufts for the second time this year by a 9-0 count, the seventh-seeded Cardinals will be playing a second-round tournament match at Trinity for the first time. Never before in the previous five years of the tournament has Wesleyan triumphed in a first-round affair. Wesleyan also played Tufts in four of the previous five tournaments and never faired better than an 8-1 setback.
Ethan Moritz '14 (photo), at #7, was one of the five freshmen to log a victory for the Cardinals over the Jumbos. Joining Moritz as a 3-0 victor was #5 Alex Nunez '14 and #6 Jeff Berman '14. At #1, John Steele '14 ran his seasonal mark to 14-3 with a 3-1 win while Zander Nassikas '14 also secured a 3-1 win.
Wesleyan faced #2 Williams in the second round on Sat., Feb. 5, then took on #6 Bowdoin in a match later on Saturday. Williams locked up its second 9-0 victory vs. Wesleyan in a week with Steele once again coming through with a game against his Eph rival. No other Cardinal turned the trick. Steele rolled past his Polar Bear nemisis in three games. Joining him was Moritz but they werer the only two Cardinal winners as Bowdoin posted a 7-2 conquering.
Wesleyan closed out the NESCAC Championship against #8 Colby, a squad the Cardinals downed, 7-2, back in December. This time, however, Colby got the better of it with a 5-4 victory. Winners for the Cardinals were Candal, Nassikas, Nunez and Berman. Wesleyan dropped a pair of 3-2 matches which could have turned the tide in the Cardinals' favor.
Ahead for the team is a trip to Vassar Sat., Feb. 12 for the Vassar Team Challenge.