Yale defeats defending national champ UConn, 45-44

"Well that was pretty wild!," Jack Montague tweeted after the game.
“Well that was pretty wild!,” Jack Montague tweeted after the game. (yalebulldogs.com)

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.

3 thoughts on “Yale defeats defending national champ UConn, 45-44

  1. If Yale wins the League, which is clearly possible if not probable, a second bid should go to Harvard, based on its record over the last few years and its personnel. I believe this team could be the Crimson’s best ever. The interesting question is whether Yale gets a bid if it finishes as strong second to Harvard. A win at Florida might put the Bulldogs over the top, especially if Florida and Connecticut end up in the Tournament. Congratulations to Coach Jones and his team. Wins like this make everyone in the League proud and happy!

  2. A win over the defending national champions and a Rhodes Scholar on the roster. Yale’s faux airs of athleticism and erudition sickens me. Still, both are great achievements and it’s all coming together for them. I am beginning to think that despite all the ballyhoo (i hate that word) over Harvard, this looks like the Elis’ year.

    The AQ

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