While Harvard and Yale were fighting for their March Madness lives in New Haven several months ago, I was flying (first class, of course) towards Asia in a hurtling, subsonic piece of aluminum. As we chased the sun eastward, I indolently pulled up my window shade and looked out upon the vast, barren, frigidness that is the Arctic Ocean. Then, through the miracle of Wi-Fi (you know, that powerful, invisible force that allows our planet to torment one another through magic), I proceeded to watch the Bulldogs dismantle their arch rivals before a, well, ”mostly filled” John J. Lee Amphitheater. Regardless of how the crowd appeared on site, I can assure you it did not “show well” at 33,000 feet on a 15-inch screen. In fact, the view from my window of Arctic Ocean seemed to be an appropriate metaphor for the vast sea of empty seats above the hardwood. (I exaggerate, naturally, but not too much.)
Ivy Hoops Online’s writing staff voted on where all eight Ivy women’s and men’s basketball teams would end up for the 2019-20 season. Our projected order of finish for the women:
I attended the University of Virginia during the Barry Parkhill era, earning a law degree in 1972. Needless to say I was elated when my “borrowed heroes” captured the Cavaliers’ first national championship. Their “worst to first” turnaround brought to mind the Miracle Mets’ run to the World Series in 1969 while I was in Charlottesville.
It is time, however, to return my attention to my real heroes, the Princeton Tigers, the season just concluded and the prospects for the future.
With the Yale men and the Princeton women winning their respective divisions on Sunday, another Ivy League Tournament is in the books. Here are a few of my personal highlights that were not found on the television or the box scores:
In a tight game between the regular season co-champions that featured 10 lead changes and six ties, Princeton’s stars took control down the stretch to defeat Penn and win the Tigers’ second consecutive Ivy League Tournament title Sunday.
With the victory, the Tigers (22-9) secured the Ancient Eight’s automatic bid and await their opponent for the NCAA Tournament on Monday night’s selection show. Penn (23-6), meanwhile, will have to wait and see if it can secure the Ivy League’s second-ever at-large bid or be chosen for a second straight WNIT appearance.
With Yale trailing by one, 54-53, in a back-and-forth Ivy League Tournament final battle Sunday, Yale junior guard and Ivy Player of the Year Miye Oni picked up his fourth foul and was promptly benched. Even on its home floor at John J. Lee Amphitheater, the Bulldogs looked like they’d been bit.
But they were about to bite back.
No. 1 Princeton 68 vs No. 4 Cornell 47
No. 2 Penn 91 vs No. 3 Harvard 62
No. 4 Cornell (12-13, 6-8 Ivy) vs. No. 1 Princeton (20-9, 12-2) Sat., 6:00 p.m. ESPN3
Season Series – Princeton 2-0
2/2/19 at Cornell; Princeton wins 75-46
2/22/19 at Princeton; Princeton wins 68-64
Princeton: won last 10
Cornell: won three of last four