Ivy women’s hoops Saturday recap

Columbia (7-14, 3-5 Ivy) 83 at Brown (9-15, 1-7) 81

Columbia’s Madison Hardy sank two three-pointers in the last minute to push the Lions over Brown, 83-81, at the Pittzitola Sports Center.  The victory was Columbia’s first conference road win and brought the Light Blue into a three-way tie for fifth place.  The Bears, which lost their seventh straight contest, ended the night in sole possession of last place.

The Lions jumped out to a 14-3 lead, but the Bears came back and finished the first quarter up 24-17.  With Brown still up seven with 2:30 to go in the half, Columbia ended the half on a 7-2 run with Sienna Durr netting two layups and a three-pointer. The Lions would take a 57-50 lead with just under three minutes to go in the third quarter, before Brown would go on 5-0 run to cut the deficit to two at the end of the the frame.

After the Bears came back to take a 70-63 lead with 5:15 to go in regulation, the Lions came back and a Lillian Kennedy put-back layup off a Janiya Clemmons jumper made it a 77-76 game in favor of Brown with ninety seconds left.  Brown’s Shayna Mehta missed a layup and Hardy calmly sank a three from the left side, near the Lions bench, with 53 seconds left to give Columbia the 79-77 advantage.  Justine Gaziano sank two free throws on the next possession to knot the game at 79 with 41 seconds remaining.  Columbia worked the clock down to 15 seconds and Hardy hit another three from the identical spot to make it an 82-79 contest.

After Brown’s Dominique Leonidas hit her first two free throws of the season and Columbia’s Riley Casey went 1-for-2 from the line, the Bears had one last chance with 11 seconds to go.  Leonidas took the inbounds pass, racing to the right side of the basket for a layup at the three-second mark.  Her shot missed the hoop, falling into the hands of Mary Butler for the uncontested offensive board.  Butler went right up for the tie, but her layup hit the back of the rim and bounced to the right.

Both teams shot well from the field and the line, but the Lions used its slight advantage on the glass to come out with the win.  The Lions outrebounded the Bears by five and had 14-9 edge on the offensive side, which helped them to a 14-7 advantage in second-chance points.  Durr scored a game-high 23 points with Clemmons scoring 16 and Kennedy adding 13.  Casey had six points, as well as a career-high seven assists and 10 rebounds.

Gaziano finished with a game-high 26 points to go along with Mehta’s 17 and Erika Steeves’s 15.  The Bears did get the return of Mary Butler to the starting lineup for the first time in five games, but Taylor Will, the team’s third leading scorer, was on the bench.

Columbia, two games out of the last Ivy Madness spot will travel to league-leading Penn and Princeton next weekend.  Brown, meanwhile, will look to end its losing streak at third place Harvard and fifth place Dartmouth.

Princeton (13-9, 5-2 Ivy) 82 at Dartmouth (10-11, 3-5) 75

The Big Green raced out to a 22-6 lead over the game’s first 11 minutes, but the Tigers dominated the second and third quarters to put the game away.  With the win, Princeton jumped into sole possession of second place, while Dartmouth fell into a three-way tie for fifth place.

For the second straight night, Dartmouth came out of the gate strong, only to falter in the middle part of the contest.  The Big Green went up 20-6 after one quarter, but Princeton would close the gap to as little as three with just under four minutes left in the second frame and ended the half down, 40-35.  In the Princeton 29-point second-quarter effort, Bella Alarie scored 23 of the team’s points on 8-for-10 shooting.

At the seven-minute mark of the third quarter, Carlie Littlefield three gave the Orange & Black their first lead, 45-43, since the game’s first minute.  Dartmouth’s Isalys Quinones hit two free throws to cut the lead to 51-50 halfway through the frame, but that would be as close as the Green would get.  Princeton finished the quarter on a 11-4 run, eventually getting the lead up to a high of 14 in the fourth quarter.

The Tigers only shot 27 percent (6-for-22) from beyond the arc, but they hit 58 percent from two and 73 percent from the line.  The Big Green, meanwhile, hit 56 percent from three (9-for-16), 49 percent from two and 91 percent from the charity stripe.  The difference in the game came down to rebounding, where Princeton had a 14 percent advantage leading to 16 more second-chance points, and the free throw line, as the Tigers had 19 more attempts and 12 more made baskets.

Princeton’s Bella Alarie ended the night with 41 points on 16-for-24 shooting, her second 40-plus-point game of the season.  Alarie is now the second Ivy player ever to have two games of 40 or more points in a career, joining Penn’s Diana Caramanico who accomplished the feat in 1999 and 2001.  Alarie also added 13 rebounds, three assists and a steal.  Littlefield and Gabrielle Rush each had 14 points in the win.  For Dartmouth, Quinones scored 22 points, Kealy Brown had 14 and Katie Douglas totaled 11.

Princeton will face Cornell and Columbia at Jadwin, before a mid-week matchup with Penn on Feb. 26.  The Big Green will host Yale and Brown as they look to gain ground on the upper division.

Cornell (9-10, 3-5 Ivy) 43 at Yale (15-8, 5-3) 41

Cornell took control late to defeat Yale in a defensive battle, 43-41, at the John J. Lee Amphitheater.  The win gave the Red a weekend sweep, its first since Feb. 2016 and placed the team in a three-way tie with Columbia and Dartmouth.  For Yale, the loss ended its 11-game home winning streak and knocked the Elis from second place into a tie with Harvard for third.

The first half was a back-and-forth affair with 10 lead changes.  Neither team led by more than five points and Yale finished the second quarter ahead 21-18.  The Bulldogs finally broke away, taking a 31-21 lead at the 5:30 mark of the third quarter, but the Red went on a 14-0 run over the next 6:30 to a 35-31 lead.  Yale battled back and the two teams were tied at 39 with 2:45 left in regulation.

At the 2:25 mark, Yale’s Roxy Barahman was fouled by Cornell’s Caitlyn Smith and immediately slammed the ball, picking up a technical foul.  Laura Bagwell-Katalinich sank two free throws for the Red, while Barahman went 1-for-2, leaving Cornell up 41-40.  After Barahman blocked a Smith three, Bagwell-Katalinich drew a charge call on the league’s leading scorer to force a turnover.  Yale had the ball with 17.7 seconds left.  but Barahman missed a shot from the right baseline.  Bagwell-Katalinich was fouled and made two free throws to make it a 43-40 game with 11 seconds on the clock.  Tori Andrew got the ball on the left wing with three seconds left and was fouled on he unsuccessful three-pointer.

Andrew got to the free throw line, missing the first and making the second.  After a timeout, she purposely missed the third free throw, but neither team could secure the rebound as time ran out.

Both defenses played well, forcing Cornell into 29 percent shooting and Yale making only 27 percent.  The offenses also struggled from the free throw line with the Red hitting 65 percent and the Bulldogs making only 62 percent.  Cornell went 13-for-20, though, while Yale only managed 8-for-13.  Bagwell-Katalinich finished with 17 points and nine rebounds in the win, while Samantha Widmann had 11 points and Theresa Grace Mbanefo had nine rebounds in 19 minutes of action.  Barahman ended with 14 points, seven rebounds and four assists in the loss.

Cornell takes its two-game winning streak on the road to take on Princeton and Penn next weekend.  Yale will visit Dartmouth and Harvard.

Harvard (12-9, 5-3 Ivy) 80 vs Penn (16-4, 6-1) 72 2OT

In front of a raucous sold-out Lavietes Pavilion crowd, Harvard outlasted Penn in double overtime to end the Quakers eight game winning streak and hand them their first defeat in league play.

The Crimson ended the first quarter up four and finished the first half with a 33-29 lead.  Harvard used its strength from the outside, shooting 33 percent (6-for-18) from three, while Penn dominated the inside with 48 percent from two and 88 percent (7-for-8) from the line.

Two Madeline Raster free throws with seven minutes to go in the third put the Crimson up 41-31 for its largest lead of the night. Penn came back and ended the quarter down only one, 46-45. Penn’s Michae Jones made one of two free throws to give the Quakers a 52-50 lead with 40 seconds left in regulation. Katie Benzan missed two three pointers on the next possession, but Harvard grabbed two offensive rebounds. On the second, Jadyn Bush was fouled by Eleah Parker and made both free throws to tie the game.  A missed three from Princess Aghayere from the top of the arc sent the game into overtime.

The first overtime was close, with three lead changes and three ties over the first 3:30.  Harvard’s Sydney Skinner hit a layup to make the score 61-60 and a 1-for-2 effort from the line extended the lead to two with 22 seconds left.    Penn worked the clock down and Jones drove the left lane with a running layup to tie the game at 62 and send it into a second overtime.

Harvard looked to be in trouble when starting center Jeannie Boehm fouled out at the 4:23 mark of the second overtime.  Her replacement, Rachel Levy, turned out to be the difference for the Crimson as the Boca Raton native hit two mid-range jumpers and scored five points during a 10-3 run that finally put the game away.

Harvard ended the night shooting 30 percent (10-for-30) from three, 50 percent (15-for-30) from two and 69 percent (20-for-29) from the line.  Penn shot only 11 percent (2-for-19) from beyond the arc and 42 percent (25-for-55) from inside the arc but made 71 percent (20-for-28) of their free throws.  The two teams were even with 46 rebounds each.

The Crimson’s Madeline Raster had 17 points/nine rebounds/five assists, Bush had 16 points/nine rebounds/two blocks/two steals, Skinner had 13 points/seven rebounds, Benzan had 12 points/four rebounds/five assists and Levy finished with seven points/two steals.  For Penn, Parker had 21 points/13 rebounds/four blocks/one steal, Aghayere had 19 points (1-for-7 from three)/seven rebounds, Ashley Russell had 10 points/12 rebounds/four assists and Jones added 15 points coming off the bench.

Harvard will finish its four-game homestand by hosting Brown and Yale next weekend, while first-place Penn will start a five-game homestand by welcoming Columbia and Cornell to the Palestra.  Three days later, the Quakers will host second-place Princeton.

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