Columbia 79, Cornell 68
Cornell’s gameplan was sound: Don’t sag in too much responding to Columbia interior attacks and try to disrupt the Lions with physicality on the perimeter. Cornell’s gameplan didn’t matter.
Columbia shot 13-for-24 (54.2 percent) from beyond the arc to pull away in the second half. A trio of Lions – Luke Petrasek, Maodo Lo and C.J. Davis – hit at least three treys, enough to make up for several bunnies missed inside and playing at a faster pace than coach Kyle Smith probably wanted. Cornell missed Robert Hatter for the second game in this series but benefited from freshman guard Matt Morgan’s 26 points on 9-for-23 shooting. For more on the game, read our Ian Wenik’s instant analysis.
Dartmouth 63, Harvard 50
Malik Gill lives to strike Harvard down. Exactly 364 days after the senior guard helped fuel a 26-2 Big Green run en route to a 70-61 run at Lavietes Pavilion, Gill erupted for 11 points and three steals in the final 11:40 during a 34-10 Big Green after not having played at all in the previous matchup in this series two weeks ago.
Freshman forward Evan Boudreaux provided 18 points and 13 rebounds in 37 minutes, while Patrick Steeves, Tommy McCarthy and Corey Johnson, who have saved the Crimson offensively at various points in nonconference play, combined for eight points on 3-for-16 shooting. And oh yeah, Harvard missed 14 of its 20 free throws, with Zena Edosomwan shooting 2-for-10 from the charity stripe. The Crimson can’t afford to completely blow an entire facet of the game in tight league competition like that, and their calling card defense disappointingly gave up those 34 points in that final 11:40, while Harvard also got outrebounded, 42-29. If Harvard can’t win with offense off the dribble, it must win with defense, rebounding and free-throw shooting in close games. But can it even do that?