Wesleyan, Conn. - December 9, 2008 - The Wesleyan Cardinals had five players in double figures and held off a strong second-half comeback from Springfield as it picked up a 70-66 win over the Pride in non-conference action on Tuesday evening.
Wesleyan pulled out to a 61-51 lead with 4:08 to play and survived a strong Springfield play in the closing minutes to hold on to the win in the Pride's final game of the first semester.
The home Cardinals used an 11-4 run over a six-minute span from the 10-minute mark of the second half to extend a 50-47 margin to the game's biggest lead at 61-51 on a free throw by grad student Lucy Sprung.
Senior Ali Fourney, who was just named NESCAC Player of the Week for her efforts last week when she averaged 19 points and 5.7 rebounds in a 2-1 week, scored seven of her game-high 19 points during the Cardinals' run.
But three-pointers by the Pride's sophomore Rachelle Walker, and freshman Kelly Murphy helped trigger the Springfield rally that cut the gap to 63-61 with 1:15 to go. Senior Corey Finch also had a pair of baskets during the recovery.
Wesleyan made its final six free throws in the last 38 seconds, four by sophomore McKinley Tennant, to keep Springfield at bay and hang on for the win, which evened the overall series between the two teams at 7-7.
Walker came off the bench to pump in a team-best 17 points as she hit five three-pointers in the loss. Finch added 15 points and seven rebounds as the only other member of the Pride to net double figures. Lauren O'Connor chipped in with nine points and 12 rebounds.
For the game, the Pride outrebounded Wesleyan, 43-35, including owning a 23-12 advantage on the offensive glass. Springfield also hoisted 20 more shots in the game, connecting on just 26-of-71.
For Wesleyan, Fourney finished with a game-high 19 points, while Tennant, Erin Gold, and Meredith Lowe all had 12 points. Sprung chipped in with 10 points as well.