Leading nearly from start to finish against host NYU during the NYU New Year's Classic Tues., Jan. 3, Wesleyan secured a 69-60 triumph behind the performances of all-tournament team picks Jenna Klaes '14 (#14, right side photo) and Emily Lippe '12 (#24, left side photo). It was just the third ever meeting of the two teams and the first since Dec. 7, 1985, when NYU invaded Middletown for a 62-38 win. This was the Cardinals first victory over the Violets. Wesleyan also came away with a 50-37 win over Farmingdale St. on the opening day of the Classic Mon., Jan. 2.
Wesleyan took an 8-7 lead at 15:12 of the first half vs. NYU on a jumper by Sam LaCroce '12 (team-high 16 points) and never trailed again until the 13:03 mark of the second half, leading by as many as eight in the opening period (24-16) and nine in the second half (40-31). A 13-5 run, powered by Lippe's five points, spotted the Cardinals their 24-16 edge while four points from LaCroce in the opening two minutes of the second half triggered an 8-2 start to the frame and the 40-31 lead. But the Violets rallied for their first lead in more than 22 minutes with a 12-2 burst for a 43-42 lead with 13:03 to go. Wesleyan responded with a game-changing 12-0 spurt, eight of the points from LaCroce, giving the Cardinals a commanding 54-43 margin with 9:20 to go. NYU go no closer than seven the rest of the way as Wesleyan shot a brisk 54.5 percent from the floor and forced 21 NYU turnovers.
Klaes had a stellar all-around game as the floor general, scoring 12 points along with six assists and three steals. Lippe finished with 15 points, a team-high seven rebounds and a game-best seven steals. The Cardinals generated a modest 32-27 edge on the boards.
Next up for the team was the opening NESCAC game of the year as the team headed to Amherst Fri., Jan. 6 for a game against the nation's top-ranked squad. After that, the Cardinals take on Trinity on the road Sat., Jan. 7. Trinity will have LiveStats available which can be viewed by clicking < here >.
At Amherst, the Lord Jeffs rattled off 13 straight points in a span of 2:14 to take an 18-4 lead with 14:24 to go in the first half and raced their way to a 39-14 halftime advantage. Amherst showed why it is the top-ranked defending national champ by extending its 25-point lead at intermission to a 76-39 final and an 11-0 record. Amherst has won each game this season by at least 21 points. Amber Wessells '14 led the Cardinals with seven points.