Men's Basketball Falls Short in NESCAC Playoffs at Middlebury, Three Seniors End Banner Careers as Shasha Brown '13 & Mike Callaghan '13 Are 2nd-Team All-NESCAC
Playing their second game of the year at Middlebury, ranked third nationally in Division III, the Cardinals were hoping for another close battle after taking the Panthers into overtime during the regular-season meeting. After 20 minutes of play, it appeared that just might be the case as only three points separated the Cardinals and Panthers, though Wesleyan never led, with the host holding a 24-21 lead in the NESCAC tournament game Sat., Feb. 16.
But Middlebury opened the second half with a flurry, holding Wesleyan to four points over the first 5:30 while collecting 12 of its own for a 36-25 advantage. Though Wesleyan stayed within range for the next four minutes as a three-pointer by Mike Callaghan '13 (#44, photo insert lower right) made it a 41-35 game with 10:46 to go, that was as close as the Cardinals would come. Middlebury edge ahead by double digits again, 47-37, and never let Wesleyan narrow the gap under 10 over the final 7:52. Middlebury led by as many as 17 points in the final minute before settling for a 61-49 final score.
Callaghan was the Cardinals' top scorer with 19 points and added eight rebounds. Glen Thomas '14 had his third double-double of the season with 11 points and game-high 12 rebounds. It was his ninth game with 10 or more caroms. Wesleyan's usually reliable and potent backcourt tandem of all-time leading scorer Shasha Brown '13 (#11, main photo) and Derick Beresford '13 (#3, photo insert upper right) was held to a combined eight points on 2-for-21 shooting from the floor and 0-for-7 on treys.
Still, Brown closed out his career with three Wesleyan all-time records as his 1,745 career points tops the list, along with his 393 career assists and 438 career made free throws. He broke records of 1,692 points by Kanem Johnson '04, 353 assist by Joe Summa '71 and 393 free throws by Brendan Leary '95. Joining Brown on the career 1,000-point list was Callaghan, who ranks sixth with 1,175 points, and Beresford, who sits 18th with 1,055 points. Callaghan also had 576 career rebounds for the noteworthy 1000 point-500 rebound achievement. Both Brown and Callaghan were named second-team all-NESCAC in 2012-13. It was the fourth straight year Brown has received recognition from the NESCAC. He was Rookie of the Year in 2009-10, second-team in 2010-11 and first-team in 2011-12. Callaghan was a second-team choice a year ago, his first time on the NESCAC list.
The Cardinals ended the year with a 12-13 overall record, getting to play just nine of their 25 games at home this season.