Jason Brandner '16 (main photo) went 4-0 at #9 during the Cardinals' opening four matches of the second semester to help the team go 3-1, including a dramatic 5-4 victory at Amherst Sun., Jan. 20, ending a 24-year, 28-match drought vs. the Lord Jeffs. Wesleyan had come close to defeating its Little Three rival the last three meetings, falling by 6-3 counts. This time, Wesleyan got over the top thanks to 3-0 wins by #2 Guy Davidson '16 and Brandner, who lost just 13 points to his Lord Jeff rival, and wins from #5 Zander Nassikas '14 (photo insert upper right), #7 Blair Corbin '15 and #8 Jeff Berman '14. Berman and Corbin both won, 3-1, while Nassikas posted a thrilling 3-2 triumph, winning the fifth game, 11-9.
Wesleyan, ranked 24th, had swept past both Haverford and Northeastern to open the Pioneer Valley Invitational at Amherst Sat., Jan. 19. All Cardinals won their matches 3-0 in those outings. Wesleyan began second-semester action at home Fri., Jan. 18 against 20th-ranked Bowdoin. The match came down to the wire with Bowdoin winning the last three matches to pull out a 5-4 decision. Victories for the Cardinals came from Davidson, #6 Raheem Logan, Berman and Brandner, who now stands 6-0 on the year for the 9-3 Cardinals.
In six days, Wesleyan will be put to the test again in the official Little Three matches at Williams Sat., Jan. 26. Wesleyan will face #23 Amherst again in the first match of the day, then challenge #11 Williams.