Berger Drops 19 but Cardinals Fall to Middlebury, 76-63

Photo by Jonas Powell '18
Photo by Jonas Powell '18

THE BASICS:

Score: Middlebury 76, Wesleyan 63
Records:
Wesleyan (5-6, 0-1 NESCAC); Middlebury (9-2, 1-0 NESCAC)
Location: Middlebury, Conn.
Date: Friday, January 6
Time: 7 p.m.
The Lead: Tara Berger '19 scored 19 points on 8-of-10 shooting but it wasn't enough as the Wesleyan University women's basketball team dropped its NESCAC opener to Middlebury College Friday night, 76-63.

FIRST HALF HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Wesleyan came out hot to start the game and jumped out to a 7-0 lead within the first 1:48 of play.
  • However, the Panthers responded with an 8-0 run of its own to take a lead at the 6:20 mark following a lay-up from Catherine Harrison.
  • Shortly after, a three-pointer from Olivia Gorman '19 put Wesleyan back on top, 12-10, and the Cardinals never looked back the rest of the quarter as they held a 21-16 lead after the first 10 minutes of action.
  • The home team increased its lead to seven at the 8:29 mark with a 25-18 advantage, which proved to be its largest of the game.
  • Middlebury retaliated once again and went on a 10-2 run to go ahead by one with 2:39 to play before the break.
  • A lay-up by Harrison with :30 on the clock gave the Panthers a 32-29 halftime lead.

SECOND HALF HIGHLIGHTS:

  • The visitor's started to pull away in the third quarter and opened the half on an 11-1 run capped off by a three-point play from Harrison.
  • Ava Tompkins '20 hit consecutive three-pointers for the Cardinals and Wesleyan got within 10 following a lay-up by Kadijah Mathews '18 at the 3:15 mark, but it proved to be the closest the Cardinals would get the rest of the way.
  • Middlebury held a 52-40 lead after three quarters.
  • In the final 10 minutes of regulation, Sarah Kaufman sealed the victory for the Panthers as she went a perfect 5-for-5 from the field, including an incredible 4-of-4 from downtown.
  • Back-to-back three-pointers from Tompkins and Maeve Vitale '17, respectively, cut the deficit to 13 in the closing seconds but the deficit was too large to overcome.

INSIDE THE NUMBERS:

  • Berger added five rebounds to go along with her team-high 19 points. Vitale joined her in double-figures with 11 points, and Chynna Bailey '19 led all Cardinals with nine boards. Mathews dished out a team-high four assists and recorded a game-high three steals.
  • Middlebury was led by Kaufman and Harrison with 25 and 20 points, respectively. Kaufman was an incredible 7-of-9 from three-point range and 9-of-14 from the field, while Harrison finished 6-of-9 from the field and added 10 rebounds for the double-double.
  • The Panthers shot 61.5% (8-13) from behind-the-arc.

UP NEXT:

  • Wesleyan returns to Silloway Gym tomorrow and will host Hamilton at 3 p.m.
  • The Panthers stay on the road and will play at Connecticut College tomorrow at 3 p.m. as well.

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