In the Ivy League, where at-large postseason bids are pretty hard to come by, the non-conference season is often treated as a warm-up lap, a series of exhibitions dedicated to getting the kinks out and teaching players the system. When January rolls around and the league slate begins, the fourteen-game tournament brings with it a whole new level of intensity. Since that’s the way it is in our corner of the college basketball landscape, there is absolutely nothing more debilitating and frustrating than a serious injury in November or December. For Columbia, that nightmare scenario came to fruition in the late stages of a loss to the Furman Paladins.
Princeton coach Carla Berube set up a challenging out-of-conference schedule for her club, to say the least. She is focusing on preparation for running the Ivy League gauntlet. The Buffalo Bulls, a top-50 team and an NCAA Tournament team three times in five years, came into Jadwin Gym Tuesday night at 6-2 and riding a five-game winning streak.
The Tigers, on the other hand, were heading in the opposite direction, having lost two straight on the road at Fordham and Seton Hall.
The Bulls, coached by Felisha Legette-Jack, who has more than 300 wins in her 19-year career, are led by Dyaisha Fair, one of the best scorers in the nation.