Coming off the winningest season in Wesleyan men's basketball history with a 20-6 record and a best-ever 7-3 NESCAC record, the Cardinals have much to look foward to as the 2012-13 season approaches. Back are four starters and 13 letterwinners, bolstered by five freshmen, to give Wesleyan a deep, talented pool of athletes to put on the court for another challenging season. Last year, Wesleyan defeated both its Little Three rivals Amherst and Williams during the regular season, the first time that has taken place since the 2000-01 campaign. Wesleyan hosted its third NESCAC tournament game, and first since the 2002-03 season, soundly defeating Bowdoin before falling to NCAA qualifier Middlebury in the semifinals at Amherst.
This year the Cardinals, with a preseason ranking of 23rd nationally by D3Hoops.com, are setting their sites on a first-ever NCAA tournament berth. A group of five seniors quint-captains will provide both firepower and leadership this year. Atop the list is Shasha Brown '13 (#11, photo upper left), who has been decorated by the NESCAC each of his three seasons, earning Rookie of the Year honors in 2009-10, second-team recognition in 2010-11 and first-team laurels a year ago. Brown also earned NABC second-team all-Northeast honors in 2011-12. Joining Brown as a NESCAC honoree was Mike Callaghan '13 (#44, photo lower left by SteveMcLaughlinPhotography.com). He was a second-team choice last season. Brown led Wesleyan in scoring (17.2 PPG), assists (108) and steals (38). Callaghan was second in scoring (12.6 PPG) and rebounding (6.2 RPG).
Also back as starters are Derick Beresford '13 (#3, photo upper right) and Glen Thomas '14. Beresford was third in scoring (11.7), second in assists (47) and second in steals (33). Thomas led the squad in rebounding (7.2 RPG) while contributing six points an outing.
While Greg St. Jean '13 (#10, photo lower right) only got into seven games a year ago, he remains an inspirational leader as he continues to deal with injuries. The final captain, Matt Hogan '13, was a mainstay off the bench, playing on 25 games with two points and a rebound a contest.
Also back after seeing consistent playing time a year ago are Julian Harris '14 (5.5 PPG, 2.7 RPG), Brian Galvin '15 (1.7 PPG, 1.5 RPG, 22 assists) and Chris Tugman '15 (2.1 PPG, 2.7 RPG). Other returnees include Avery Robinson '15, Bill Claflin '15, Zach Lynch '14 and Tim Gallivan '15.
Five newcomers join the ranks to add depth at each position with three guards, a swing man and a forward among the group.
Wesleyan inaugurates the season in the Herb Kenny Tip-Off Tournament at Wesleyan Fri.-Sat., Nov. 16-17. Named for long-time Wesleyan head men's basketball coach Herb Kenny, who amassed more than 350 wins over his 27 seasons, the tournament pits the Cardinals against SUNY Maritime in the opener. Anna Maria and Daniel Webster do battle in the second game. On Tues., Nov. 20, Wesleyan hosts Williams in a non-NESCAC matchup in a game slated for a webcast.