LEWISTON, Maine -- Senior captain Nick Lynch scored a career-high 26 points and junior Kody Greenhalgh added a career-high 22 points in the Bates men's basketball team's 85-75 loss to No. 25 nationally ranked Wesleyan Friday night.
Lynch (Westford, Mass.) made 12-18 shots from the field, hitting his first-career three-pointer late in the contest. He also pulled down a team-high nine rebounds. Greenhalgh (West Warwick, R.I.) made 8-14 shots, including 6-12 from three-point range.
But Bates (5-13, 2-4 NESCAC) simply could not stop Wesleyan star Austin Hutcherson, who poured in a game-high 35 points on 13-21 shooting, knocking down 9-14 three-pointers along the way. Hutcherson also pulled down eight rebounds and dished out three assists.
The Cardinals (15-4, 5-1 NESCAC) dominated the glass, out-rebounding the Bobcats by a count of 42-26. Wesleyan tallied 22 second chance points to Bates' four. But the Bobcats kept the game close, especially in the first half, by winning the turnover battle with their 1-3-1 zone defense. Bates caused 17 turnovers and scored 17 points off turnovers on the night.
Bates led by as many as nine points in the first half. Lynch drilled a jumper with 11:23 remaining to put the Bobcats up 22-13. Hutcherson answered with five unanswered points before Greenhalgh's layup gave Bates a 24-18 lead with 10:22 left in the first half.
Junior Jeff Spellman (Boston, Mass.) sank a pair of free throws to put Bates up 28-21 before Wesleyan's Jordan James answered with a tip-in. Then James threw down a dunk before first-year Kenny Aruwajoye (Owo, Nigeria) answered with a layup. Jordan Bonner responded with a layup of his own and Hutcherson drilled a three with 2:35 left in the first half, tying the game at 30.
The Bobcats never led again and Wesleyan took the lead for good with 1:04 left in the first half on another Hutcherson three. An Aruwajoye layup cut the Bates deficit to 33-32 at the half.
Bates trailed 35-34 early in the second half when the Cardinals went on a 8-0 run to go up by nine. After scoring 14 points in the first half, Hutcherson exploded for 21 in the second half. Bonner added 18 points and a team-high nine rebounds for the Cardinals. James chipped in 13 points and Antone Walker scored 10 of his 13 points in the second half.
Lynch, Greenhalgh and Spellman combined to score 59 of Bates' 75 points. Junior Nick Gilpin (Hampden, Maine) dished out a game-high eight assists.
Both teams shot about the same from the field, with the Cardinals shooting 48.4% to the Bobcats' 47.5%. Wesleyan made 15-36 (41.7%) from three-point range and Bates shot 11-30 (36.7%) from deep.
The Bobcats return to action Saturday when they host Connecticut College at 3pm.