Cornell men survive late comeback, defeat Brown at the buzzer

Three weeks ago, the Cornell men lost to Princeton at the buzzer after leading by 18 with 16 minutes left. Sunday against Brown, the same thing nearly happened for the Big Red.

But this time, it ended differently.

The Big Red got the buzzer-beater, with Cornell senior forward Kobe Dickson stepping up as the hero to give the Big Red a 74-72 win likely to loom large in the Ivy League Tournament race.


Cornell took a 43-25 lead into the locker room and quickly extended it to 21 points after a Sarju Patel three-pointer to open the second half. But Brown chipped away, tying the game at 65 after a Kino Lilly Jr. three-pointer.

With 1:25 left, Cornell senior forward Kobe Dickson converted an and-one to give the Big Red a five-point cushion. Lilly connected on an uncontested wing three-pointer on the other end and the Bears forced a missed layup from Dean Noll.

Lilly again took over, scoring a layup with 30 seconds left to tie the game at 72. The shot clock was off, so Cornell could wait for the last shot. Patel drove and had his shot blocked out of bounds with three seconds left, but the Big Red maintained possession.

After a Cornell timeout, Dickson caught the inbound and was blocked. He got his own rebound and scored as time expired, hitting the first game-winning buzzer-beater for Cornell since Dec. 2011.

“I knew I had to either get it up or get fouled, so the first shot I tried to get fouled and they blocked it,” Dickson told ESPN. “I just tried to get it back up as quick as I could. I knew it was only three seconds, [and] it’s really just effort to get it up and over before the clock went off.”

“[Brown] is a hard-nosed, tough team,” Cornell coach Brian Earl said. “We knew they were going to come back, and we’ve had some issues with retaining leads… [Brown] just doesn’t quit.”

Dean Noll scored 16 points to pace Cornell, while Sarju Patel added 14. Chris Manon had nine, all of which were in the first half, and Jordan Jones had eight points off the bench.

Lilly Jr., Brown’s freshman phenomenon, scored 24 points to lead all scorers. Paxson Wojcik added 16 off a trio of 3-pointers and Tamenang Choh scored 10.

Cornell shot just 42% from the field and 30% in the second half. The Big Red connected on just four of 24 3-pointers, turned the ball over 19 times and outrebounded the Bears by eight, 42-34.

Brown shot 39% from the field and 29% from deep. The Bears missed eight free throws compared to just one for Cornell and recorded 15 turnovers.

Ivy Madness update

Cornell heads home to kick off a four-game homestand this weekend against Princeton and Penn, both of whom beat the Big Red earlier this year. But with its win and Harvard’s loss this weekend, Cornell holds the No. 4 seed in the Ivy League Tournament playoff picture.

Cornell essentially controls its own destiny, while Brown is in some trouble. At 2-5 in Ivy play, Bruno needs to get hot fast and hope for Cornell losses. Much like the Big Red, the Bears have several upcoming games at home, including five of the next six. They’ll host Harvard and Dartmouth this weekend.

At 5-1 in Ivy play, Princeton holds the No. 1 slot in the conference. Yale is right behind at 4-1, while Penn sits at third at 5-2.