Catching up on the Red & Green preseasons

The Cornell men opened the 2018-2019 preseason with their annual Red & White scrimmage a week ago Friday, followed by an exhibition against their Division III neighbors from Ithaca College on Tuesday. The Red team, led by assistant coach Donovan Williams, came away with the 74-63 victory in the intrasquad matchup, and the Big Red defeated the Bombers, 98-61.

In the 36-minute scrimmage, five players scored in double-digits for Williams’ squad and the group out rebounded the White team 38-25. Junior forward Thurston McCarty, a transfer from East Central Community College (MS) led the Red team with 14 points and seven rebounds. Sophomore guard Brian Knapp totaled 13 points in just under 16 minutes of action, junior forward Josh Warren and senior guard Jack Gordon each added 12 points. First-year forward Kobe Dickson had 10 points and seven rebounds, including three offensive boards, in 10 minutes.

For the White squad, senior Matt Morgan, a first team All-Ivy in ’17-’18 and the league’s three-time defending scoring champion, led all players with 20 points, while sophomore wings Jimmy “JJ” Boeheim and Jake Kuhn added 16 and 10, respectively.  Between the two teams, first-year guard Matt Harshany was the only member of the roster not to play.

For the night, the entire Cornell team shot 47 percent from the field (56 percent from two and 30 percent from three) and 73 percent from the free throw line.  The high marks went to Dickson (5-for-6 field goals), Boeheim (6-for-8 overall; 0-for-1 from three), McCarty (6-for-9 overall; 1-for-2 from three) and Knapp (4-for-6 overall; 2-for-2 from three).  Morgan went 6-for-13 for the evening, missing all five of his shots from beyond the arc.  At the charity stripe, Morgan went 8-for-10, while Boeheim shot 4-for-6 and Knapp added 3-for-4 shooting.

Against Ithaca College, the Big Red closed out the first half on a 31-14 run to take a 55-35 advantage into the locker room.  The Bombers used an 11-0 run over the first 3:20 of the second half to cut the deficit to nine.  Cornell never let Ithaca get any closer, eventually opening up a game high 39 point lead with just under three minutes to go in regulation.

Morgan again led the way for the Red, putting up 22 points.  Boeheim had 16 on the night and Kuhn added 11.  In all, 15 players go into the scoring column, as the team shot 59 percent with 21 assists.

On Friday, Cornell named Morgan, Gordon and senior forward Steve Julian tri-captains for the ’18-’19 campaign.  Gordon has flourished under third year head coach Brian Earl, going from 10 appearances and 2.2 minutes per game in his first year under Bill Courtney to 27 games (13 starts and 25.3 minutes last season.  Julian, who transferred to East Hill from Kaskaskia Community College (MO) in ’17-’18, averaged 6.7 points, 5.8 rebounds and 1.4 blocks over his 28 starts.

Cornell will travel down I-81 on Tuesday for their annual tussle with Binghamton, the sixth ranked team in the America East.  Last November, the Big Red defeated the Bearcats, 94-84, in their home opener.

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On a homecoming Saturday when the Big Green football team defeated Harvard for the first time in 15 years and the first time at home in 25 seasons, the Dartmouth men’s basketball team held its annual Green & White scrimmage.  Official stats were difficult to come by, as the Big Green were learning to work with the new statistics software package from the Genius Sports organization.  Thankfully, the Dartmouth basketball staff were kind enough to send along highlights of the 80-68 victory for Team Green.  Due to the work-in-progress nature of the new program, the stats are approximations.

The Green team consisted of junior guard James Foye, first-year guard Wes Slajchert, junior guard Brendan Barry, first-year forward Garrison Wade, sophomore forward Chris Knight and sophomore guard Isaac Letoa.  The White squad had junior guard Ian Sistare, senior guard Guilien Smith, sophomore forward Adrease Jackson, first-year guard Taurus Samuels, sophomore guard Ben Swett and sophomore guard Trevon Ary-Turner.  Sophomore wing Aaryn Rai, junior forward Will Emery and junior forward Ian Carter did not play.

Knight led all scorers with 33 points on the strength of 13-for-21 shooting.  Foye went 7-for-11 from the field to add 17 for the winning squad.  For the White team, Smith went 9 for-15 from the field, including 6-for-9 from three, to score 24 points and Jackson put in 18 points, going 8-for-12.  The Green team’s Slajchert was the top scoring first year, hitting three of five three-pointers, on his way to scoring 14 points.

Earlier in the month, Jon Rothstein tweeted that Dartmouth picked up double digit victories against UMass-Lowell and Colgate.  Both preseason wins, especially the victory against a Red Raiders team that was picked third in the Patriot League, are important for a Big Green team that is coming off back-to-back 7-20 seasons.  Dartmouth and third year head coach Dave McLaughlin will look to continue their winning ways when they host Division III Newbury College on Tuesday night and travel to Davidson, to take on the A-10’s third ranked team on Friday.

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