Ivy weekend preview: What to watch for now that there’s finally something to watch

Sunday will mark the first Ivy League conference basketball since March 7, 2020, even if two of the eight games in the opening slate (the Princeton at Harvard and Columbia at Yale men’s matchups) have been postponed due to COVID-19 concerns. Here’s what to watch for:

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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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Jaelin Llewellyn shines as Princeton escapes Dartmouth with 65-62 win

The typically wild weekend road trip to Boston and Hanover is over, and the Tigers survived with one of their goals, a berth in Ivy Madness, well within their grasp. We may well look back on this trip as the time Jaelin Llewellyn’s total game was on display at an absolutely crucial juncture for his team. Recognizing the need to step up in the absence of Ryan Schwieger, Llewellyn courageously embraced the challenge and, to put it mildly, delivered.

On Friday at Harvard, Llewellyn almost single-handedly kept the Tigers in the game to the last seconds, leading the scoring with 22 points. If he has had a weakness this season, it has been his inefficiency from deep. He takes more three-pointers than anyone else, but came into the weekend converting an unacceptable 25%. His 21 points on Saturday night gave the Tigers the spark they needed, and included 5-for-7 from beyond the arc. The final score, 65-62 Princeton, tells very little about the game.

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Dartmouth women snowed under by Penn, 66-33

You’ve got to feel for Dartmouth: After suffering a 66-34 trouncing by Princeton on Friday night, the Big Green women were exactly one point worse off Saturday night in being clobbered by Penn, 66-33, in Hanover.
The indignities Saturday included a four-point second quarter, a five-point third quarter and a 29-0 Penn run in the first half that eliminated any sort of suspense about the game. And two of the biggest cheers came for a Penn player: First-year forward Silke Milliman grew up in Hanover, so her relatives and friends roared when she came into the game and when she scored her one point of the night.

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Harvard knows bigger challenges are ahead after sweeping Dartmouth

HANOVER, N.H. – Animated is not a word normally used to describe Tommy Amaker, but there he was Saturday night at Leede Arena exhorting his team on, almost screaming, at least as much as Amaker is capable of such a thing.

The timing seemed strange. Just past the midway point of the second half, his Bryce Aiken-less Harvard team had just started to put some distance between itself and a pesky Dartmouth team that pushed the Crimson fairly hard the week before at Lavietes Pavilion and was only a four-point underdog (sports gambling recently became legal in the state of New Hampshire, for those who care). Harvard wasn’t playing its best game, but it weren’t playing poorly, either.

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Full Leede Arena makes Dartmouth dream, even in loss

Let’s be honest with ourselves, the Ivy League is never going to win any Division I attendance titles. But what some of the homely and aging facilities in the Ancient Eight lack in size or amenities, they can make up for in old-school college basketball atmosphere, which anyone who has attended a big game at Lavietes Pavilion (home of this season’s Ivy League Tournament) or Lee Amphitheater can attest to after their ears take a couple of hours to adjust to normality.

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Dartmouth frustrated by Bryant, but not discouraged

Saturday afternoon’s 64-60 loss to Bryant at Leede Arena left a bitter taste on the lips of Dartmouth as it breaks for the holidays.

And rightfully so. The Big Green (7-6) have overachieved for much of the first two months of this campaign, and if they are going to contend to compete in the Ivy League Tournament for the first time, they should be able to handle an NEC team – particularly a banged up one – at home.

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