In a game during which neither team led by more than five points at any time, Wesleyan and Bates came down to the wire Sat., Jan. 19 in a NESCAC matchup. With the score even at 78-78, Bates had possession and missed a three-point try in the closing seconds. The Bobcats rebounded their own miss underneath and scored a layup just before the final buzzer to escape with an 80-78 victory, extending the Cardinals' current losing skid to four games. Up next for the team is a trip to Conn. College Sat., Jan. 26 for a very important NESCAC battle. Prior to the two-point setback at Bates, Wesleyan took on fourth-ranked nationally and undefeated Tufts Fri., Jan. 18, and the Jumbos rolled to an 80-36 triumph.
With 13 ties and 18 lead changes at Bates, the Cardinals and Bobcats were never separated by more than two possessions throughout the afternoon. The Bobcats had their largest lead early on at 5-0 and matched it at 35-30 late in the first half before Wewsleyan recovered to snag a 41-40 halftime edge. Four points proved to be the greatest differential in the second period as Bates led, 75-71, with 4:07 to go after the Cardinals held a 62-58 margin on a Jackie Browne '16 trey with 11:05 remaining. A Cherkira Lashley '15 jumper at 2:40 gave Wesleyan its last lead at 76-75. Lashley finished with 13 points. After Bates regained the advantage, a pair of Amber Wessells '14 (#22 in photo) free throws even the count at 78-78. Following a Bates turnover, Wesleyan had possession but a potential go-ahead layup by KellyAnn Rooney '14 was blocked and Bates got the rebound. A three-point try by Bates was off the mark but the follow-up basket broke the tie as the horn sounded.
Coming off the bench to contribute a team-high 16 points was Karly Finison '16 (#25, photo), as she shot 6-for-10 from the field and had six rebounds. Kendra Harris '13 also had double-digits for Wesleyan with 10 points. Lashley led the way on the boards with seven. A blistering 30-for-34 effort by Bates at the line was key to its success in the contest as the Cardinals took 16 more attempts from the floor and had nine more baskets.
At Tufts, the Jumbos jumped ahead 15-6 after eight minutes of play and pushed out to a 39-14 lead at halftime. The lead never fell below 25 in the second half and gradually extended to the final difference, the game's largest margin. Wessells paced the Cardinals with 14 points while Harris added eight. Lashley had a team-best seven rebounds.