Princeton men’s second-half shooting propels Tigers past Cornell

Reigning Ivy Player of the Year Tosan Evbuomwan led Princeton to a comeback win over Cornell Friday at Jadwin Gym. (Photo by Erica Denhoff)

Editor’s note: IHO reporter George “Toothless Tiger” Clark delivers an in-depth audio dispatch on the Princeton men’s and women’s clashes with Cornell while IHO reporter Nathan Solomon gives us the written rundown of the pivotal men’s game in the Ivy title race: 

In the second consecutive game without sophomore guard Nazir Williams, the Cornell men capitalized on a hot start to lead by 10 at the half.

But Princeton flipped the switch in the second half, scoring 54 points and connecting on 66% of its shots to fend off the Big Red, 89-82, Friday at Jadwin Gymnasium.

Cornell (15-6, 5-3 Ivy) took a 48-35 lead just 16 seconds into the second half after senior guard Greg Dolan drilled a three, but Princeton (15-6, 6-2) went on a 16-3 run to tie it at 51 after a three-pointer from sophomore guard Blake Peters.

Princeton took a 65-58 lead with 9:21 to go, but sophomore guard Guy Ragland Jr. made a layup and junior forward Keller Boothby put back a miss to cut it to three.

Cornell cut it down to one with 5:10 remaining, but that’s the closest it got. Princeton seemingly responded to every Cornell basket and held on for a seven-point win.

Senior forward Tosan Evbuomwan had a typically efficient night, leading the Tigers with 17 points off 8-for-12 shooting. Junior guard Matt Allocco added 16 and made nine of his 10 free throws while Peters had 16 with five makes from downtown. Freshman forward Caden Pierce and freshman guard Deven Austin each scored 13.

For the Big Red, junior guard Chris Manon continued his stellar play in absence of Williams, scoring 23 points for the second straight game. Junior guard Isaiah Gray scored 13 points — 11 of them coming in the first half — and junior forward Sean Hansen added 12, mainly coming on a series of post shots down the stretch to keep Cornell in the game.

The Big Red shot just 36% in the second half and turned the ball over 11 times. Princeton won the battle on the boards 34-28. Although the Tigers turned the ball over 17 times, 58% shooting across 40 minutes countered a sloppy night handling the ball.

The Princeton win marked coach Mitch Henderson’s 200th win at the Tigers’ helm (200-114, 103-45)

Cornell heads to The Palestra to face Penn on Saturday. Sitting a game above Yale and Cornell atop the Ivy standings, Princeton hosts Columbia.


1 thought on “Princeton men’s second-half shooting propels Tigers past Cornell”

  1. The Tigers responded in the second half like a champion. After losing two consecutive halves by a total of 33 points (including the second half of the Yale game last weekend), the Tigers turned up the heat on defense, which is why they won this game. Cornell was able to get any shot it wanted in the first half, but much tighter guarding in the second half created turnovers for the Tigers and plenty of missed shots by Cornell. After losing the rebounding battle in the first half, the Tigers decisively out-boarded the Big Red in the second half. Solid free-throw shooting by everyone (except Tosan) sealed the deal. A big shoutout to Devon Austin, who sparked the second half turnaround with playmaking, scoring, and rebounding. To me, he was the difference in the game (as he was in Ithaca). His stellar play compensated for the surprisingly bad game played by Ryan Langborg. I expect Langborg to shake it off and respond with a big game tonight against Columbia. Go Tigers!

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