Another week full of Ivy news, with none bigger than Courtney Banghart’s move from Princeton to North Carolina. The former Big Green All-Ivy guard and Tigers head coach signed a five-year contract to take over a Tar Heels program that needs a new start. Per Jeff Gravely of WRAL in Raleigh, Banghart’s contract starts at $650,000 in 2019-2020 and increases to $730,000 in 2024-2025. Athletic and academic bonuses are included that can increase the yearly salary by $10,000 to $470,000.
After Friday’s action, two teams (Princeton, Penn) clinched spots in Ivy Madness and one team (Brown) was eliminated, while the other five teams continue to battle it out for the last two tickets to IT-3.
Princeton 64 vs Dartmouth 47
Penn 75 vs Harvard 70
Cornell 66 vs Yale 56
Columbia 93 vs Brown 62
GARDEN CITY, N.Y. – The Brown women’s basketball team built several 20-point-plus second-half leads and held off a determined Adelphi to come away with a closer-than-expected 75-62 victory on Wednesday evening. With the win, the Bears secured their third victory in the penultimate contest of a seven game road trip and improved its overall record to 8-7.
The game, a rare visit to a Division II program, was the result of a cancelled late December game against Howard and the need to fill an empty slot before the start of the Ivy schedule. With most teams starting league play in January and limited time at the end of 2018 calendar, there were few takers.
“I’ve known (Adephi head coach) Missy (Traversi) for a long time,” said Brown coach Sarah Behn. “We’re grateful they squeezed the game in.”
Princeton (0-2 This week; 1-3 overall)
vs Seton Hall 66-70
at Penn State 71-79 (OT)
Even with their starting lineup absences, the Tigers just missed sweeping two major conference foes this week. Against Seton Hall, Princeton came back from an 18 point third quarter deficit to hold a 66-59 point advantage with 2:15 left in the game. Unfortunately, the Orange & Black went scoreless the rest of the way, as the Pirates finished on an 11-0 run. The Tigers were also up 7 against Penn State with 2:42 left in regulation, but the Nittany Lions went on a 9-2 run to tie the game at 63. In the extra session, Princeton could only manage 1 field goal in 10 attempts as they went down to their third straight defeat.
Despite the losses, Princeton received improved play from first-year starters Grace Stone (13 points and 7 rebounds in 36 minutes vs PSU), and Kira Emsbo (6 points, 3 rebounds, 3 blocks in 12 minutes vs PSU), a 6′ 5″ forward who missed her senior season due to a ACL tear. A Thanksgiving tournament in Cancun against DePaul (#15), Syracuse (#18) and Kansas State should continue to give the younger Tigers more experience and make the whole team stronger by the time Bella Alarie, Taylor Baur and Qalea Ismail return from the DL.
With teams a few short weeks away from actual games, here is a collection of off-season stories to catch up on before the start of the 2018-2019 season.
On Friday afternoon, the Providence Journal reported that Brown women’s basketball head coach Sarah Behn was charged with domestic assault following an incident with her husband that occurred at a home in Foxboro, Mass. last weekend. The coach’s spouse, Timothy McGahan, accused his wife of pushing him over a wooden chair, causing him to fall to the floor, the Journal noted, adding that when he stood back up, she then allegedly pinned him against a wall.
With a fourth place finish, an appearance in the inaugural Ivy Tournament, and a postseason win in the first round of the 2017 Women’s Basketball Invitational, things looked bright for the Brown women’s team heading into 2017-2018. The Bears, which did not lose a single member of the previous year’s squad, were picked fourth in the league’s preseason poll and there was talk among Ivy fans that this group could be the first since 2011-2012 to break the Harvard-Penn-Princeton stranglehold on the conference’s top three spots.
A 9-1 start, including Tournament titles at the University of Pacific and the Ocean State Tip-Off, added to the program’s confidence as it returned from finals to visit Boston University on December 22nd. Up 28 points with 3:22 remaining in the third quarter, starting three-guard Taylor Will came off the court with a knee injury and did not return to action for the rest of the year. While Brown defeated the Terriers, Howard University and Johnson & Wales to complete its non-conference scheduled with a program-best 12-1 record, the Bears aura of invincibility had been shattered.
Fri., Feb. 16
Penn 75 at Columbia 39
Harvard 86 vs Brown 74
Dartmouth 64 at Yale 62 (OT)
Princeton 72 at Cornell 40
Sat., Feb. 17
Princeton 74 at Columbia 46
Dartmouth 77 vs Brown 60
Penn 53 at Cornell 39
Yale 69 vs Harvard 63
Same As It Ever Was:
1st – Princeton (9-1 Ivy; 18-4 Overall)
2nd – Penn (8-2 Ivy; 17-5 Overall)
Tie 6th – Cornell (2-8 Ivy; 6-17 Overall)
8th – Columbia (1-9 Ivy; 7-18 Overall)
Wed., Jan. 24
Penn 74 at Temple 59
Fri., Jan. 26
Harvard 97 vs Yale 73
Dartmouth 78 vs Brown 73
Sat., Jan. 27
Columbia 72 at Cornell 54
Harvard 87 vs Brown 85
Yale 57 at Dartmouth 39
Sun., Jan. 28
Penn 89 vs Gwynedd Mercy (Division III) 25
Record: 7-6 Overall and 0-0 Ivy (5-1 Home; 2-5 Away)
Rankings: KenPom #239, Bart Torvik #235, TeamRankings #246
Defensive Improvement and Guard Play
The Bears are again playing an up-tempo game (Top 60 nationally), putting up lots of points (78.2; 2nd in Ivy), and getting to the free throw line at an elite level (25.0 attempts/game, 19.3 made/game, 76.1 percent shooting, and 23.8 percent of total point production). However, this year’s team has been showing growth on the defensive side of the ball, most noticeably in holding opponents to 33.6 percent from three (minus-3.8 percent from ‘16-’17) and securing a 73.4 percent defensive rebounding rate (plus-2.1 percent from ‘16-’17). This effort has led to a 5.0 percent decline in opponent’s effective field goal shooting and a 7.8 point improvement in adjusted defensive efficiency.