Friday's Best

Kyle Casey and Harvard won an ugly game at the Palestra to take full control of the Ivy League title chase. (Photo Credit:

Best Road Warrior: Harvard. It's not always pretty, but the Crimson continue to find a way to get it done behind great defense again. Wright, Rivard and Curry combined to go 1-15, but Harvard's depth saved them as Corbin Miller contributed 17 points in just 18 minutes. Kyle Casey dropped 15 points, while Wright was a vacuum on the glass, grabbing 13 rebounds. Penn didn't receive any of the home cooking that some expected from a raucous night at the Palestra as the Quakers were whistled for 23 fouls, while Harvard was only whistled for 12 fouls. After the game, Rosen delivered this quote: “Usually, I'm a 'we' guy. We win. We lose. I

felt like I was totally to blame. I didn't hit the shots that I hit in my sleep, the shots I take day after day.” Of course, Rosen is bound to be hard on himself, but the Penn star did not deliver on this night, scoring 16 points on 21 shots. Cartwright pitched in with 12 points, while Bernardini was held to 2 points on 0-5 shooting. Harvard's grip on the Ivy title tightens after this one, and a sweep tonight at Princeton would all but end the race with three weekends to go.

Best Underrated Squad: Cornell. The Big Red fought back from a deep first half hole behind 29 points from Johnathan Gray, the team’s former manager who has become a real weapon for the Red, to win an overtime thriller 85-84 over Yale. Gray shot 6-8 from deep and 10-18 on the night, and Chris Wroblewski was masterful with 18 points, 10 assists, and 7 boards. This was not your father’s Ivy basketball game, as Cornell pushed the pace and finished with 72 attempts from the field (knocking down 33 FGs). The final minute of regulation included a Wroblewski bucket, a Yale response to go back up 1, a Gray three to put Cornell back up two, and an Austin Morgan lay-in in the final seconds of regulation to send it to OT. In overtime, the Johnathan Gray show continued, and Yale came up just short, leaving the Bulldogs with a damaging loss to their title aspirations. Cornell, on the other hand, is starting to establish itself as a serious top half contender.

Best Bottom Half Performance: How good was Columbia in the first half against Brown? They scored 47 points on 29 possessions, good for 1.62 points per possession. Are you kidding me? The Lions were 10-16 from three as Brown stubbornly refused to switch from a zone that could not defend the perimeter. The Lions assisted all 16 of their 16 first half field goals. For Brown, losing Sean McGonagill to an injury for the weekend is just the latest tough break in a season full of them for old Bruno. The Bears had matchup problems all over the court and Columbia exploited all of them (Cisco's strength was too much for McCarthy inside, Harris and Sullivan couldn't keep up on the perimeter) Furthermore, Brown only suited up 9 players, eerily similar to last year's food-poisoned trip to New York. The Lions got to play their freshmen and the rest of their bench as the Bears never got closer than 19 in the second half, cruising in the home rout. Columbia will be fresh for Yale tomorrow night.

Best Second Half: The Princeton Tigers returned home for their first Ivy contest at Jadwin of the year, and it took them 20 minutes to get comfortable. Dartmouth threatened to spring the upset, leading 25-23 at the half, but Princeton put them away in the second frame behind Doug Davis' 20 points (including 5-7 from three). Ian Hummer had a night to forget, shooting 0-11 and going scoreless, but Brendan Connolly picked up the slack, finishing with 10 points on 4-5 shooting. Freshman and IHO favorite Denton Koon scored 6 points and grabbed 5 boards in 21 minutes. Princeton will have to be much sharper tonight when undefeated Harvard rolls into Jadwin. Dartmouth was led by three freshmen as Jvonte Brooks managed a double-double with 11 points and 13 rebounds, John Golden scored 12 points, and Gabas Maldunas pitched in with 7 points and 6 boards. The Big Green had to Penn to endure the wrath of a pissed-off Zack Rosen.