Taking the lead for good with 9:42 remaining in the first half, 14-12, on a three-pointer by Emily Lippe '12 (eight points), Wesleyan used a 16-3 run to move ahead 25-15 with 4:30 to go en route to a 33-24 lead at halftime vs. Middlebury Sat., Jan. 14. Opening the second half with an 11-0 burst for a 44-24 advantage with 16:25 remaining, Wesleyan let Middlebury get no closer than nine the rest of the way, which proved to be the final margin in the game, 63-54. Wesleyan improved to 2-2 in NESCAC play with the victory, 9-4 overall.
Lippe netted six points on a pair of treys and Sam LaCroce '12 (#20, right side photo) had three baskets for six points to trigger the decisive run that gave the Cardinals control in the first half. LaCroce finished with 10 points and a game-high 16 rebounds for her second double-double of the year. Eileen Gaffney '12 (#30, left side photo) paced the Cardinals with 16 points while adding eight boards.
Wesleyan's lead stood at 20, 54-34, with 9:00 on the clock before Middlebury staged a rally to trim the gap to nine. That 18-7 streak made it 61-52 with 1:28 left, but it was too little, too late and the Cardinals stayed the course to victory.
Wesleyan returned to action Fri., Jan. 20, hosting NESCAC rival Tufts to start another home conference weekend, followed by Bates Sat., Jan. 21 in a game slated for a webcast. The Bates game can be viewed by clicking < here >.
Tufts pulled away from a slim 7-6 lead with 12:52 remaining in the first half by outscoring the Cardinals 22-9 for a 29-15 halftime margin. Wesleyan got no closer than 12 early in the second half before Tufts gradually pulled away to as much as a 24-point lead (47-23, 6:04 left) en route to a 54-32 victory. Gaffney and LaCroce paced Wesleyan with six points apiece while the six rebounds of Jess Cherenza '15 was tops for the team on the boards.