Ivy news roundup – July 20, 2017

Alarie and Boehm join forces to help USA Women U-19 at World Cup

As noted in the May 21 IHO Ivy news roundup, Princeton’s Bella Alarie and Harvard’s Jeannie Boehm were selected to the USA Women’s U-19 team for the World Cup taking place in Italy from July 22 through 30.  Last week, USA Basketball profiled the two as they got ready for the upcoming tournament.  The rising sophomores are the first two Ivy Leaguers to be a part of the U-19 team in the 32-year history of the national squad.

To get ready for the World Cup, team USA is taking part in a three-day exhibition in Italy.  On July 17, the Americans defeated Spain 84-72 with Alarie in a starting role.  In her 26 minutes of play, she had 10 points, eight rebounds (five on offense) and five blocks.  Boehm, who was a member of the U-18 team last year, played 10 minutes and had 2 defensive rebounds.  On the 18th, the USA defeated their Italian hosts 62-36. While Boehm had four points and two rebounds in 16 minutes off the bench, Alarie sat out with a wrist injury. Both Ivy Leaguers returned to action on the 19th, as the US completed its 3-0 exhibition run with a 64-56 victory over Latvia.  Alarie had 6 rebounds in 20 minutes of play, and Boehm had two rebounds in five minutes of action..

The US will start its quest for a seventh World Cup championship with opening round games against Mali on the 22nd, China on the 23rd and Italy on the 25th.  Afterwards, all the teams will be seeded going into the Round of 16  on the 26th.  The quarterfinals will be held on the 28th with the semis on the 29th and the medal contests on the 30th.  All the games can be viewed at the FIBA World Cup site or the FIBA channel on Youtube.

Quinones helps Puerto Rico gain berth in women’s AmeriCup

Dartmouth’s Isalys Quinones and her Puerto Rico team went 4-1 in last week’s FIBA Centrobasket Championship and secured a berth in the upcoming AmeriCup Tournament in Argentina from August 6-13.  The rising junior averaged 4.8 points and 2 rebounds in 15.9 minutes a game with a strong 6-for-6 12 point performance in the opening game against Jamaica.  Puerto Rico ended the tournament in a three-way tie with Mexico and the Virgin Islands.  Due to tiebreaking rules, Virgin Islands earned the gold, Mexico took the silver and Puerto Rico received the bronze.

The official draw for the 10-team AmeriCup took place on Wednesday and placed Puerto Rico in Group B with Paraguay, Canada, Cuba and Mexico.  Puerto Rico will have to deal with Canada, the defending champions, and Cuba, the 2015 runner-up.

Spieth finishes NBA Summer League play

Steven Spieth took part in last week’s NBA Summer League in Las Vegas, as a member of his hometown Dallas Mavericks.  In four games, the former first-team All-Ivy forward averaged 1.8 points and 1.8 rebounds in 8.3 minutes a game.  The former Brown Bear and present Mavericks free agent also was the subject of a short feature at NBA.com.

Columbia men’s basketball names associate head coach

Last week, Columbia men’s basketball head coach Jim Engles announced that assistant coach Jean Bain had been promoted to associate head coach.  Bain has been with the Lions since 2016, following four seasons working on Paul Cormier’s staff at Dartmouth, the last two as associate head coach. At Columbia, he has focused on recruiting, scouting and player development.

Ivy hoopsters and teams earn spots on NABC awards

On July 12, the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) released its fifth annual Team Academic Excellence Awards and four Ivy teams made the 2016-17 list.  Columbia, Harvard, Princeton and Yale each earned spots based on had cumulative grade point averages of 3.0 or higher for its men’s teams.  This is Yale’s fourth straight appearance and Harvard’s third straight.  For Columbia it is the 2nd time being included, and its first since 2014-25.  This is Princeton’s first time making the grades.  The only other Ivy to be included in the list is Dartmouth, which earned a spot in 2013-14.

On Wednesday, the NABC released its 2016-17 Honors Court, which recognizes men’s basketball players with a cumulative grade point average of 3.2 or higher, and thirteen Ivy players made the list:

Columbia (2) – Chris McComber  (senior), Conor Voss (senior)
Harvard (4) – Corbin Miller (senior), Andre Chatfield (junior), Chris Egi (junior), Zach Yoshor (junior)
Princeton (3) – Steven Cook (senior), Alexander Lee (senior), Aaron Young (junior)
Yale (4) – Anthony Dallier (senior), Eric Anderson (junior), Landon Russell (junior), Sam Downey (senior)

Ivy Players Help U.S. to Maccabi gold

The US men’s basketball team, including former Cornell guard JoJo Fallas and rising junior Robbie Feinberg of Harvard, won the Men’s Basketball Tournament at the recently concluded 20th world Maccabi Games in Israel.  The men went 4-0 in group play to make the final four.  The US beat the hosts 92-69 in the semifinals and France 75-67 in the finals.

Jen Berkowitz of Yale, Hayley Isenberg of Harvard and Emily Surloff of Columbia were members of the U.S. women’s basketball team.  The Americans went 2-1 in the opening round robin, losing to the Israelis.  In the semifinals the Americans beat Russia 77-63 and avenged its earlier defeat with a 71-61 championship victory over Israel to earn the gold medal.

There was no specific information noted, but it appears that Berkowitz, an Honorable Mention All-Ivy in 2016-2017, did not actually play in the tournament.  Also, Isenberg, a rising junior, is not listed on the 2017-2018 Harvard roster.

Mid-Major Madness Hearts Ivy Hoops

Recently, Patrick Toner of SB Nation’s Mid-Major Madness decided to look at the best mid-major basketball programs in each of the 50 states.   Three Ivies, Yale, Harvard and Princeton took top honors in Connecticut, Massachusetts and New Jersey, respectively.

Penn women get a second 2018 commit

On July 19th, Meg Hair of Jamesville-DeWitt High School announced that she had become the second member of the 2018-2019 recruiting class.  Hair is a two-time Class A Co-Player of the Year and the 2016-2017 All-Central New York large schools Player of the Year, who has led her team to two straight state championships.  In both of those tournaments, she was named as the Most Valuable Player.

Hair is 5’11” and can play anywhere on the court.  Last season, she averaged 15.3 points per game and hit 69 three pointers.  She had an early season game with 9 three-pointers against a future Section III Class AA state championship team, and a state semi-final contest with 6 three-pointers.  On defense, she is a high energy player whose strengths are rebounding and steals.

Hair is teammates with Jamie Boeheim, daughter of legendary Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim and sister of incoming first-year Cornellian Jimmy Boeheim,  When Hair arrives at Penn, she will join former All-Central New York and rising senior starter Anna Ross.

Former Tiger named Knicks President

On July 12th, former Princeton Tiger men’s basketball player, Steve Mills, was named president of the NBA’s New York Knicks.  Mills was a three-year varsity player for Princeton, graduating in the Ivy League championship season of 1981.  He was coached by Hall of Famer Pete Carril, and was teammates with former Cleveland head coach Dave Blatt (‘81) and two-time Ivy League POY Craig Robinson (‘83).  Over his career, the 6’1” guard played in 78 games, averaging 8.4 points a game.

This is Mills’ second stint with the Knicks and Madison Square Garden (MSG) Sports.  He was named Executive VP of Franchise Operations in 1999, promoted to president of MSG Sports in 2001, and elevated to COO and Sports Bureau President of MSG in 2003.  During his first career at MSG, he was involved in basketball and business operations for the Knicks and Liberty of the WNBA.  After leaving in 2009 to work for Magic Johnson Enterprises, Mills returned to the Knicks in 2013 in the role of executive VP and general manager.  With former team president Phil Jackson’s departure, Mills added the title of interim president on June 28.

With a skeptical fanbase, time will tell if this former Tiger has what it takes to lead the Knicks back to the top of the NBA.  However, his hiring of former Sacramento executive Scott Perry as general manager has been seen as a positive step forward for the franchise.

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