Emmanuel began the second half with a 26-9 run, erasing a 30-29 halftime deficit and emerging with the game's largest lead at 55-39 with 8:35 to play. Fourney then made an inside basket (photo) to cut the margin to 14 and break the Wesleyan point record with 1,418. At the 5:20 mark, her three-pointer cut the gap to 11, 59-48, but Wesleyan got no closer than nine in the final five minutes as the Saints edged ahead in the overall series, 4-3.
The first half was a nip-and-tuck battle as neither team led by more than four points, that coming early on by the Cardinals, 10-6. The half ended with Wesleyan clinging to a 30-29 lead. The Saints pulled away from a 34-34 tie with eight straight points in the second period. They doubled that margin later in the period. Both Lucy Sprung '08 and Meredith Lowe '09 connected for double-digit scoring, chipping in 11 and 10 points, respectively for the Cardinals.
Wesleyan got back to NESCAC play Sat., Feb. 7 with an important road game vs. travel partner Conn. College. Wesleyan emerged with its 12th straight win over the Camels, 75-55, behind 26 points and 15 rebounds from Sprung.
The teams were tied 29-29 late in the first half before the Cards pulled out to a 36-31 lead at intermission. After a Sam LaCroce '12 basket gave Wesleyan a 46-35 lead with 16 minutes to play, the Cards did not let the Camels cut the difference under 10 points the rest of the way. Fourney added 16 points while Lowe scored 17 along with 11 boards, also giving her a double-double.
Wesleyan began its final home weekend by taking on NESCAC leader Bowdoin Fri., Feb. 13. The night proved unlucky for the Cardinals as they dropped a 63-52 contest. Bowdoin used a 13-2 burst over a span of 3:09 in the second half to pull away from a 41-41 tie and move ahead, 54-43. Wesleyan narrowed the margin to 56-50 and had two possessions to cut it further but came up empty. Bowdoin went 5-for-6 at the line in the final 48 seconds to seal the deal.
Wesleyan got 16 points from Sprung and 13 from Fourney as the team recovered from an early 7-0 deficit to grab its largest lead at 23-18. But a 14-4 Bowdoin run gave the visitors a 32-27 halftime lead.
Wesleyan, which can finish as high as fifth in the NESCAC standings, closes out the regular season against Colby Sat., Feb. 14. One unlikely scenario could leave the Cardinals out of the playoff picture but the possibility exists.
(Additional Note - The Ali Fourney countdown to the record was mistaken from the start of the season as she had 1,068 points through three seasons, not 1,066, as was stated at the outset of the 2008-09 campaign. Thus, she only needed 11 points heading into the game at Emmanuel to break the record, not 13. Apologies from the SID)