Nester’s Career Night Leads WashU Past NYU

Photo by Danny Reise/WUSTL Photos
Photo by Danny Reise/WUSTL Photos

St. Louis, Mo., Feb. 15, 2019 – Junior guard Matt Nester poured in 14 of his career-high 22 points in the second half to lead the Washington University in St. Louis men's basketball team to a 73-54 win over New York University Friday at the WU Field House in St. Louis.

Nester was 7-of-11 from the field and hit a career-best 6-of-9 from three-point range. He also had three assists, three rebounds and two steals in 30 minutes played.

WashU shot 50.0 percent (28-56) from the field in the win, including 69.2 percent (18-26) in the second half. 

WashU improved to 15-8 and 8-4 in the University Athletic Association (UAA), while New York dropped to 8-16 and 1-11 in the conference. The Bears are in sole possession of third place in the UAA standings, one game behind first-place Emory and Rochester.

Sophomore guard Jack Nolan finished with 16 points on 6-of-9 from the field, including 3-of-5 from three-point range, while senior center Marcus Meyer had 11 points off the bench on 5-of-7 shooting. Junior forward Jonathan Arenas was all over the court with four points, a career-high 11 rebounds, four assists and two steals.

WashU started slow missing its first five shots from the field, but a three-pointer by Nester tied the score at 3-3. A three-point play junior center Hank Hunter gave the Bears a 12-8 lead, and then Nolan capped a 7-0 with a three to make it 19-12.

Nolan scored the final five points of the first half as WashU took a 30-23 lead to half. He led the Bears with 13 points on 5-of-8 shooting in the first half. 

WashU shot 33.3 percent (10-30) from the field and forced 11 turnovers in the first half, and Bears had a 12 advantage in points off turnovers. Arenas had nine rebounds, including five on offensive glass.

WashU opened the second half on a 7-0 run, highlighted by a steal and a dunk by freshman forward Justin Hardy, to jump out in front 37-23. NYU responded with a 10-0 run to trim the advantage to 37-33. Meyer scored on a lay-up to end the drought.

Nester's three capped a 7-0 run to push the lead to 10 (49-39), and then buried three from beyond the arc in a span of seven minutes to put the game out of reach.

Bobby Hawkinson led NYU with 17 points and eight rebounds. The Violets shot 43.4 percent (23-53) from the field and turned the ball over 16 times.

WashU takes on Brandeis University on Sunday, Feb. 17, at Noon. The Judges knocked Chicago out of UAA contention with a 72-52 win in the Windy City and moved into a tie for fourth place in the conference standings.

BEAR NOTEBOOK: WashU leads the all-time series with NYU, 49-15, and the Bears have won seven-straight meetings … Jay Murry broadcasted his 600thWashU contest … The Bears have won 15 or more games in eight-straight seasons.