Sunday Thoughts

This was one of those weekends where nothing seems to make sense as Yale was the only team to sweep its two contests.
This was one of those weekends where nothing seems to make

sense as Yale was the only team to sweep its two contests.

Throw out the transitive property; toss your scribbled notes in the air; step on your calculator. This year”s conference play continues to confound as Yale, left for dead last Saturday and ranked last in our most recent Power Poll, rose from the ashes and swept Penn and Princeton on the road, the rarest of Ivy feats. Hats off to the Bulldogs who got it done, 69-65, behind a balanced attack and backcourt discipline against the usually disruptive and lengthy Tigers” defense. Yale guards, who have been maligned in this space for their turnover troubles, did a great job on Saturday, committing just six turnovers (the whole team had a total of 13 compared to Princeton”s 16). The trio of Javier Duren, Austin Morgan, and Sam Martin led the way in scoring, dropping 13, 11, and 11, respectively. Duren got it done by getting to the rim and hitting all five of his free throws, while Morgan (3-6 from 3) and Martin (3-3 from 3) impacted the game with the deep ball. Yale”s defense really bothered Ian Hummer, who did manage to go 6-10 from the field, but also committed seven costly turnovers. My personal favorite anecdote from the game was a tweet from The Trentonian”s Nick Peruffo, who talked to Justin Sears after the game and found out that Sears calmed himself at the free throw line by “thinking about watching Entourage.” Can”t question it if it works!

The only remaining unbeaten on Sunday morning, Harvard, was pummeled by Columbia, 78-63, Sunday afternoon at Levien. The Lions finally put together a full 40 minutes and lived up to the expectations that most people had set for them. Brian Barbour and Maodo Lo were solid on both ends of the floor, but the star of the show was Steve Frankoski. The junior sharpshooter was 9-12 from the field, including 5-7 from three, finishing with a career high 27 points. The Crimson had no answer for the quick ball movement and slashing of Columbia”s guards, and also struggled to deal with Cory Osetkowski, whose strength and length inside resulted in 10 points and a game-high nine rebounds. Columbia looked like a new team on defense, giving Siyani Chambers very little space to work with all day and closing out nicely on Laurent Rivard. Wesley Saunders was guarded tightly too, but Harvard”s leading scorer would not be denied, making every shot he took in the first half and finishing with 27 points of his own.

The game”s turning point came with about nine minutes to play. Chambers finished acrobatically at the rim to cut the Lions” lead to four at 51-47 and the momentum seemed to have shifted Harvard”s way. But Columbia responded as Barbour found Lo for three, then Barbour laid the ball in with great body control in typical Barbour fashion, followed by a Rosenberg three, assisted by (who else?) Brian Barbour. And in one minute, Columbia turned a tightening battle into a 12-point lead with less than eight to play. Barbour certainly hasn”t had the best year shooting the ball or finishing games, but today, he completely took over the game in a few key moments and ensured that this one would not slip away.

In other action, Cornell destroyed Dartmouth, 79-56, behind Shonn Miller”s 15 points and six blocks, five steals, and four rebounds. That”s quite a line for the heavy favorite to win Ivy Defensive Player of the Year. Dominick Scelfo also added 15 points for the 3-3 Big Red, as Cornell”s athleticism on the defensive end overwhelmed Dartmouth and resulted in a cold 29% shooting day. Tyler Melville led the Big Green with 12 points as Dartmouth fell to 2-4.

Penn manhandled Brown in a weekend that was short on close games. Miles Cartwright was magnificent for the Quakers, scoring 28 points on 9-13 shooting, including a hot night from deep (5-6). In fact, the whole Quaker

team was hot from deep, knocking down 9-15 from beyond the arc and running away from the Bears early in the second half. Tony Hicks was impressive as well with 15 points for the 2-3 Quakers. Meanwhile, Brown, who usually makes a living from the outside with several snipers on the roster, could not buy a bucket on this night. The Bears shot 11% from deep (2-18), and couldn”t get much going from closer in either. Small bright spots in the losing effort, Matt Sullivan had 15 points, five rebounds, and five steals, while Cedric Kuakumensah recorded seven blocks. The Bears fell to 2-4 after getting swept.


3 thoughts on “Sunday Thoughts”

  1. Chaos in the Ivy League…isn’t it great? Watching Yale on Saturday night chop up my beloved Tigers and the computer feed of Harvard swooning in NYC on Sunday raised two questions in my mind: How did that Yale team lose 3 of 4 and how did that Harvard team win 5 of 5? A lot has been written about Jones’ “genius” in devising a pressure defense that befuddled the Tigers, and it certainly helped to shorten the shot clock on many possessions. The confused Tigers could only manage a 51% shooting night, outscoring the Eli from the field. No,it was at the offensive end that Yale won this game, as they were able to penetrate the Tiger perimeter constantly, creating very good opportunities, explaining their own remarkable 55% shooting night, 58% from 3!!! Off balance on defense, the Tigers fouled a lot enabling Yale to win the game at the line, outscoring Princeton by 9 from the stripe in a 4 point game. (I offer no comments regarding the quality of the officiating.)
    Congratulations to Brian Barbour on a Zach Rosen-like performance yesterday. Not only did he play well, he inspired his teammates in the way most people thought he would all season.
    Back to Yale—How often has an Ivy team swept the P’s on the road? Not very often, you can be sure. If the Tigers look past Dartmouth to Harvard, they could get another jolt on Friday.
    AQ, where are you?

    • Sorry for the late reply Mr. T but I do have a day job y’know. (If you must inquire as to what my avocation is, it is performing black magic on the other Ivy contenders while dancing around a pire of Palestra game-used jocks in the hope of instilling Jerome Allen with supernatural coaching abilities. Unfortunately, I was told today by the Grand Ancient Eight Shaman that i am being terminated for “poor performance in my sector.” Personally, I have no idea what his problem is. After all, everything went fine last year. FYI, Zack Rosen? That was all me. I suppose you just can’t please some people.)

      Anyway, this will be an interesting weekend for sure. i was indeed present for Harvard’s undoing yesterday. (And all i can say about that is, “you’re welcome.”) But I’m afraid you must wait until my incisive Power Poll analysis later this week to hear what I really think.
      Until then my friend,
      Stay Red and Blue
      The AQ

      • I look forward to this week’s Power Poll, and your analytical pedantry that is its most anticipated feature. Any truth to the rumor that Saturday’s Jadwin officiating crew may appear as high as 5th on this week’s Poll? Now, Jerome, get up there and beat Harvard the way the Quakers are supposed to! Dance, AQ, Dance!!!

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