Eshe lays roots down at Yale as Princeton women’s coaching tree grows

Dalila Eshe takes over a Yale women’s basketball program that reached new heights under Allison Guth but is looking to to supplant Princeton as the conference’s premier program. Eshe is the latest Ivy head coach to come from Princeton. (Yale Athletics)

The Princeton tree continues to sprout women’s basketball coaches in the Ivy League.

Yale named Princeton assistant Dalila Eshe as the 11th head coach in program history Monday. Eshe replaces Allison Guth, now head coach at Loyola Chicago.

Former Tiger assistants are now the head coaches at Yale, Harvard (Carrie Moore) and Columbia (Megan Griffith).

And it makes sense.

The Tigers are as close to a dynasty as one might find in the corridors of the Ancient Eight. Princeton won Ivy titles in 2018, 2019 and 2022, the last three years that the title has been contested, and have gone 40-2 during that period in the Ivy.

Eshe impressed at her opening presser today at John J. Lee Amphitheater. She gave immediate kudos to Yale president Peter Salovey, an American social psychologist who Eshe could identify with as a former college psychology major. She also credited Yale athletic director Vicky Chun and deputy athletic director Ann-Marie Guglieri on a very professional search.

“It is an honor and a dream come true to accept this position,” Eshe said, adding that the Bulldogs “will pride ourselves on putting in the work to win championships.”

Eshe comes to Yale from Princeton where she spent three seasons as an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator, helping Princeton to a No. 24 national ranking and a NCAA Tournament first-round win over favored Kentucky.

The Tallahassee, Fla. native was a WNBA player with the Washington Mystics and Atlanta Dream and coached at Loyola Maryland, East Carolina and La Salle before her stop at Princeton. She knows talent when she sees it, having secured La Salle’s first-ever top 100 recruit. During her recruiting tenure at Princeton, the Tigers boasted three consecutive top-40 classes.

Eshe made it clear that she is a defense-first coach who also values the significance of a top-flight post presence like 6-foot-5 Yale junior Camilla Emsbo. Eshe knows her well, having coached her twin sister Kira at Princeton. The new Yale coach values post players who “can stretch out.”

The Florida alumna noted that in her first meeting with her new team on Tuesday night, team members urged her to help with community outreach to bolster women’s basketball attendance at Yale. Eshe also recognizes that the league has been, and can be in the future, a two-bid NCAA conference. With that in mind, Eshe wants to play a challenging yet realistic out-of-conference schedule.

Yale returns Emsbo and a large part of the squad which compiled a 16-11 record and a 9-5 mark in the Ivy this past season before falling in the Ivy League Tournament to Columbia.

Yale men best Brown as Swain shines on Senior Night

Senior guard Azar Swain shook off pre-game Senior Night anxiety to lead Yale to a 74-65 win over Brown Saturday night, registering 22 points on 8-for-15 shooting. (Photo by Erica Denhoff) 

On an emotionally charged Senior Night, Yale took care of business and defeated Brown in a Saturday night showdown, 74-65, at John J. Lee Amphitheater.

Four Yale seniors, Azar Swain, captain Jalen Gabbidon, Eze Dike and Jameel Alausa, played their last home games for the Bulldogs. Dike started after not playing this calendar year due to injury.

“I thought we played a better brand of Yale basketball,” coach James Jones said in comparing the performance to the efforts against Dartmouth and Cornell on the road last week. Jones captured his 350th career win. It was also his 191st Ivy League win, moving him ahead of former Penn coach Fran Dunphy into second place all-time in league history behind only Pete Carril.

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Princeton snaps seven-game losing streak versus Yale to tie Bulldogs atop Ivy standings

Yale coach James Jones had won seven contests in a row against Princeton prior to Saturday’s matchup at John J. Lee Amphitheater. But the Tigers snapped that streak with an 81-75 victory to pull into a tie with the Bulldogs atop the Ivy League standings. (Photo by Erica Denhoff)

Mitch Henderson is now into his second decade as skipper of the Princeton Tigers. Going into Saturday’s crucial meeting with the Yale Bulldogs, the only Ivy team to defeat the Tigers in Jadwin Gym, this season, Henderson had amassed 180 wins against 106 losses.

But the Tigers have struggled against James Jones’ Bulldogs, losing seven straight to them heading into their latest clash.

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Columbia women outlast Yale, 65-57

Abbey Hsu played all 40 minutes in Columbia’s win over Yale Saturday, posting 18 points and six rebounds. (Photo by Erica Denhoff)

It was a big game for both teams, but it was arguably even bigger for Yale.

The inconsistent Bulldogs sat at 6-3 and Columbia at 7-1 in Ivy play entering Saturday’s fray. Yale very much wanted to separate from Harvard and avoid the Columbia season sweep.

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Yale men hang on to end regular-season losing streak versus Harvard

Matt Knowling posted 10 points and nine rebounds in 34 minutes in Yale’s win over Harvard Saturday. It was the Bulldogs’ first regular-season win over Harvard since 2016. (Photo by Erica Denhoff)

Feb. 26, 2016 was a long time ago – so long ago that no member of the Yale men’s basketball team was even enrolled at Yale.

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Yale men hang on to down Dartmouth, 72-69

Azar Swain led Yale with 25 points and six rebounds in 34 minutes as the Bulldogs held on to outlast Dartmouth at John J. Lee Amphitheater Friday. (Photo by Erica Denhoff)

It was just another day at the office for James Jones and crew – until it wasn’t.

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Columbia at Yale men’s game rescheduled

The Columbia at Yale men’s game that was originally scheduled for Sun., Jan. 2 has been rescheduled for Tues., Jan. 25 at 7 p.m. at John J. Lee Amphitheater, the Ivy League announced Wednesday.

The game was postponed due to COVID-19 concerns and protocols within Yale’s program. It will be streamed live on ESPN+.

Meghan Moore, Ivy League associate executive director of communications & championships, told Ivy Hoops Online that the league is committed to rescheduling all games that are postponed due to COVID-19.

 

Ivy League venue spectator safety rules as the conference season approaches

As the omicron variant has resulted in a large increase in the number of COVID-19 cases across the United States, many businesses and institutions, including several Ivy League athletic departments, have been revisiting their safety policies.

With the start of league play a few days away, Ivy Hoops Online is listing information regarding each team.  To get the most detailed and up-to-date information, including what is an acceptable mask, it is recommended to check the links for each institution’s main COVID-19 page.  If there are any questions, fans are encouraged to contact the individual universities or athletic departments.

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