Yale hadn’t beaten UConn in 28 years. UConn had won 68 games in a row against in-state rivals.
But it took only one play to flip that script.
Trailing 44-42 with 3.2 seconds left on the game clock, Yale inbounded the ball. Just a second and a half later, junior guard Jack Montague nailed a three-pointer that clinched the Elis the win, only the second for an Ivy over a defending national champion since Princeton trumped UCLA in 1996.
Leading the way for the Bulldogs (8-2) was junior forward Justin Sears, who notched 12 points and 15 rebounds, just 10 fewer boards than UConn (3-3) posted as a team. Senior guard Javier Duren also contributed 15 points.
Montague’s three-pointer marked just the third in 21 attempts from beyond the arc, making the Bulldogs’ winning play heavily ironic. The Huskies fared little better, draining just two of 11 three-point tries.
Another storyline was Huskies guard Ryan Boatright’s status heading into the game. Boatright played with a sprained right ankle he sustained against Texas Sunday, contributing six points and six assists in 35 minutes. Center Amida Brimah led UConn with 14 points on 7-for-8 shooting.
The loss marked UConn’s second-straight loss by last-second three-pointer. Texas senior forward Jonathan Holmes hit a trey with two seconds left to edge the No. 7 Longhorns past the then-No. 24 Huskies.
More importantly from an Ancient Eight perspective, the win cements Yale’s status as a legitimate contender for the Ivy crown and helps preserve the possibility of two NCAA bids for the league. Up next for the Yale is a matchup with Florida Monday night at 7 p.m. Sears has indicated that the Elis will be ready.
Thanks for all the love everyone. Matt Townsend and I will be in the gym tomorrow working on our midrange J.
— Justin Sears (@Jussears5) December 6, 2014