Yale staked its claim to second place in Ivy women’s basketball Saturday afternoon at home by beating Penn, 63-53.
Now that was a finish to remember.
Yale overcame a slow start and the absence of all-everything Camilla Emsbo to injury to beat Brown at John J. Lee Amphitheater Monday, 69-67, on a layup by Christen McCann with 1.8 seconds remaining.
— Yale Women’s Basketball (@YaleWBasketball) January 17, 2022
Jenna Clark, the Ivy assist leader, dished on the winning bucket.
The winner was set up by a Klara Astrom steal with five seconds remaining. Coach Allison Guth then called a timeout to set up the winning shot.
McCann played a full 39 minutes and led her team with 19 points on 7-for-9 shooting. The Port St. Lucie, Fla. native also added eight rebounds.
Versatile senior forward Alex Cade took over for Emsbo at center and led Yale (10-6, 3-1 Ivy) with 11 rebounds while standing out with a career-high 18 points.
First-year guard Isabella Mauricio led Brown (5-11, 0-4) with her own career high of 23 points.
Brown carried a 41-37 lead into the locker room off of a torrid 53% shooting from the field. The Bears had taken a 22-21 lead at the end of the first quarter on a Mauricio trey at the buzzer and then went on a 12-0 run to start the second quarter.
Both Mauricio and freshman forward Amanda Latkany had eight in the half and Yale was paced by Jenna Clark with seven. Latkany had missed both the Harvard and Princeton losses.
Yale outscored Brown over the third stanza, fueled by an 8-0 run. Brown carried a narrow 56-55 lead into the last period.
Brown entered the game averaging only 55 points per game but shot 47% from the floor.
Yale outrebounded the visitors 43-31 and held a 16-1 advantage on the offensive glass to claim its third straight win.
Brown hosts Columbia and Yale hosts Penn next Saturday, both at 2 p.m.
In 13 previous games this season, Yale sophomore guard Elles van Der Maas had logged a total of 29 minutes in 10 appearances, scoring 29 points.
But Saturday against Harvard, the Sydney, Australia native exploded for a team-high 22 points in 25 minutes, helping lead Yale to a hard-fought 80-73 win over Harvard at John J. Lee Amphitheater.
That was half the story.
Announcers and writers around the nation focused a lot of attention to the 600-plus days between games for the Ivy League. While many expected the teams to be a bit rusty out of the gates, the Ancient Eight acquitted itself quite well in the season’s first week.
Thirteen of the league’s 16 teams had at least one win, with the Princeton and Columbia women notching three victories each. The Brown men almost upset No. 19 UNC without their top player, and the Princeton men just missed out on winning the Asheville Championship.
Check out some of the highlights from a very successful and welcome week of Ivy hoops:
One day after releasing the conference’s preseason poll, the Ivy League moved one step closer to normal by hosting the 2021-22 Media Day for women’s basketball Tuesday. For the first time, the league used a Zoom format to create a stronger connection between the coaches, players and the media.
In Monday’s poll, three-time defending champion Princeton was again picked as the top team with 122 total points and 12 first-place votes. Penn, the 2019 co-champion, was selected No. 2 with three first-place votes and 108 points. The next three teams were close, with only six points separating Columbia, Yale and Harvard.
The Lions, which earned their first Ivy League Tournament berth in 2020 before the tourney was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, moved up to third with 87 points. The Bulldogs, a third-place team in 2020, dropped to fourth at 82 points. The Crimson, which finished fifth in 2020, received one first-place vote but missed the upper division by one point.
Cornell, the 2020 seventh-place squad, moved up to sixth for 2022 with 41 points. Dartmouth and Brown, two teams with new coaching staffs, ended up with the last two spots, with the Big Green’s 29 points two ahead of the Bears.
Tuesday’s Media Day revealed the four tiers apparent in the preseason poll. But there could be a slight reordering near the top.
As this Ivy non-season progresses, we thought it’d make sense for us to do an Ivy Hoops Online contributors’ roundtable looking ahead to next season, assuming there is one:
A quiet Saturday on the college basketball front was upended just after three o’clock with Adam Zagoria’s tweet:
Sources: Two Ivy League schools are highly unlikely to play men’s hoops this year and it’s possible the whole league won’t play at all.
“I have a feeling it would be the whole league isn’t going to play,” one Ivy League asst coach.
— Adam Zagoria (@AdamZagoria) October 17, 2020
With most regular seasons and championships for fall sports postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, college athletes and fans have been anxiously awaiting word on the winter sports schedule. They received good news on September 16, when the NCAA Division I Council, chaired by Penn athletic director Grace Calhoun, announced that the men’s and women’s basketball seasons could begin on November 25.
“The new season start date near the Thanksgiving holiday provides the optimal opportunity to successfully launch the basketball season,” NCAA senior vice president of basketball Dan Gavitt said to ESPN. “It is a grand compromise of sorts and a unified approach that focuses on the health and safety of student-athletes competing towards the 2021 Division I basketball championships.”
While basketball enthusiasts around the nation rejoiced with the news that meaningful games would soon be returning to the hardwood, fans of the Ancient Eight were left wondering if the league would move from its July 8 decision that teams could not participate in intercollegiate athletics competition prior to the end of the fall semester.
The short answer is no.
“There are no changes at this time,” responded Ivy League associate executive director, strategic communications & external relations Matt Panto to a request from Ivy Hoops Online. “The decision we have made is it (hold on competition) goes through the (end of the) fall term.”
Yale’s on a roll.
The Bulldogs shut down Brown with authority in a 73-40 rout at the Pizzitola Sports Center Saturday, completing a season sweep of the Bears after having beaten them 79-72 last Friday.
Yale (12-3, 2-0 Ivy) held Brown (6-9, 0-2) to five points in the first quarter and 15-for-57 (26.3%) shooting for the game.