MIDDLETOWN, Conn. (taken from a Wesleyan University press release) – The Brandeis University men's basketball team scored the game's first 15 points, but the Judges couldn't hang on to the lead as they dropped a 71-61 road decision at 18th-ranked Wesleyan University this afternoon. The Judges fall to 2-6 on the season, while the Cardinals remain unbeaten at 8-0.
FIRST HALF HIGHLIGHTS:
- It was all Brandeis in the opening minutes as the visitors took a commanding 15-0 lead, holding the Cardinals to 0-of-10 shooting with five turnovers in the early going.
- Senior Nate Meehan (Lowell, Mass./Phillips Andover) had five points in the run.
- After eight minutes of scoreless play, Wesleyan eventually got on the board following a pair of free throws from Jordan James.
- With 10:23 to play in the first half, JR Bascom knocked down the first field goal of the game for the Cardinals.
- Trailing by 15 (19-4) with 10:03 remaining, Wesleyan outscored the visitors 26-13 the rest of the way to cut the deficit to two entering the break.
- A 3-pointer by rookie Austin Hutcherson with :35 remaining helped give the Cardinals momentum entering the second half as they trailed 32-30 at halftime.
- Meehan finished with nine points, while sophomore Eric D'Aguanno (Saunderstown, R.I./St. Andrew's School) had eight and rookie Chandler Jones (Springfield, Mass./Springfield Commonwealth Academy) added seven. Wesleyan's Hutcherson scored 12 to lead all players at the half.
SECOND HALF HIGHLIGHTS:
- The second half was a different story. Wesleyan's Nathan Krill blocked a shot and took the rebound the length of the court as he finished with a one-handed dunk to tie the game at 34-34. Less than 30 seconds later, a dunk by James put the Cardinals on top for the first time all day at the 18:33 mark.
- Brandeis regained a lead with 13:15 to play and went ahead 43-39 seconds later following a pair of free throws from sophomore Collin Sawyer (New London, Conn./New London).
- Wesleyan, however, went on a 9-0 run capped off by a Hutcherson layup at the 10:24 mark to put the Cardinals back on top for good.
- The home team continued to increase its lead down the stretch as Wesleyan claimed the 10-point victory.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS:
- Wesleyan shot 45.8% (27-59) from the floor and 40.9% (9-22) from downtown while Brandeis shot 32.8% (22-67) from the floor and 25.0% (7-28) from behind-the-arc. The Judges held a slight 43-42 edge in rebounding but the Cardinals outscored Brandies in the paint, 34-16. Both teams turned the ball over 20 times.
- Hutcherson scored a game-high 27 points on 10-of-17 from the floor, including 7-of-9 from downotown. He added six rebounds and four steals. He was joined in double-figures by junior Jordan Bonner (11), James (10) and Krill (10). Junior Kevin O'Brien dished out a game-high nine assists and James added a game-high five blocks to go along with six rebounds.
- Brandeis was led by Sawyer, who finished with a team-high 14 points while Jones added a career-best 13 and Nate Meehan finished with 11. Senior Latye Workman (Brooklyn, N.Y./Bedford Academy) led all players with 11 boards and Lawrence Sabir (Pawtucket, R.I./LaSalle Academy) registered a team-high four assists.
- The Judges are off for the remainder of the semester, returning to action with another road contest against a NESCAC foe when they head to Lewiston, Maine, on December 31 to take on Bates College at 1 p.m.