Cornell men spread wealth, hold off Canisius late, 79-70

ITHACA, N.Y. — After an uptempo first half saw the Cornell men score 45 points and shoot 53% from the field, Canisius managed to slow the Big Red down and claw back into the game. Jordan Henderson hit four consecutive three-pointers for the Golden Griffins and Tahj Staveskie hit two to cut their deficit down to five with 1:46 remaining, but the Big Red came up with timely stops in the final 90 seconds to defeat Canisius, 79-70.

“We pulled away a bit in the beginning and just couldn’t finish the job,” said Cornell coach Brian Earl. “We got a little bit nervous, especially in the beginning of the second half just not taking what we had in front of us.

“We’ve got to take a look at where some of the errors were. [Henderson and Staveskie] are good players, and we were sort of hoping they wouldn’t get open and they did and they made it.”

Nazir Williams notched his first career double-double with 12 points and 10 rebounds, pacing a balanced scoring output for the Big Red. Guy Ragland Jr. also scored 12 off 3-for-5 perimeter shooting and Greg Dolan had 11 points and five assists. Isaiah Gray, Keller Boothby and Chris Manon each had 10.

“Tonight was a little different night, I really couldn’t make any shots,” said Williams, who went 5-for-9. “Just trying to find out what else I can do on the court if I’m not scoring – rebounding, passing and everything turned out fine.

Williams noted that playing defense can generate more energy on offense.

“Even though I’m not hitting shots, I can still always get to the rim to find my teammates, and my teammates hit shots,” Williams said.

Williams hit a contested runner with 1:13 left to put the game away after Canisius trimmed the lead to single-digits.

“We really needed that shot,” Williams said. “Down the stretch, we wanted to get good shots and I felt like I had an advantage that play.”

Cornell led by as many as 15 points in the second half. The Big Red opened the second half shooting 3-for-13 from the field, which prevented them from putting away the Golden Griffins, who went 3-for-15.

Buying into the system

Earl introduced an uptempo version of the Princeton offense last season after the Ivy League did not participate in athletics in the 2020-21 season. The Princeton offense is typically slower, not a 10-second-style system.

Earl spent the off year creating and implementing the system to prepare for the return of Ivy basketball. But he needed the team to buy into it and believe in him.

“Coach implemented a system last year – we fully bought in,” Williams said. “You’re really starting to see the great lengths we can take this, just everybody feeding off each other and sharing the ball, making shots.

“Most of us are sophomores and juniors now, it’s like we were all freshmen last year because the sophomores didn’t get to play [during 2020-21]. Just getting that experience [last year], a lot of guys averaging double-digit minutes. We just lean off our leaders if we need them, Greg [Dolan], Marcus [Filien], Sean [Hansen] — they’ve all been here before.

Cornell lost Sarju Patel, Kobe Dickson and Dean Noll to the transfer portal after their senior seasons last year. Jordan Jones entered the portal after his junior year but isn’t playing collegiately this year.

Earl added six newcomers ahead of this season, five of which are freshmen. The lone transfer, Max Watson, from Salt Lake Community College, is the only newcomer regularly playing in Earl’s system. The rest of the core this season played valuable minutes in 2021-22, which is an advantage under Earl’s unique system.

“Experience is always a thing that gets you to understand how what you want to do and what you want to stay away from,” Earl said. “It was good to get some help last year. A lot of teams have been able to scout us a little bit, too, so it’s been a little bit harder in that way.

“[Watson] has hit the ground running and we have some younger guys who are still learning stuff.”

Cornell returns to action on Saturday, when it faces Monmouth in West Long Branch, N.J. The game is scheduled for 2 p.m. ET on FloHoops.

 

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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Could an Ivy hoops bubble be considered for ’20-’21?

With a growing number of colleges cancelling in-person plans as well as fall sports in response to COVID-19, questions will soon shift to the status of winter sports. Since experts believe there will be a significant increase in cases and deaths as flu season arrives and activities moving indoors amid colder weather, it is difficult to image a return to a normal world, much less a normal sports world, by the end of 2020 or the beginning of 2021.

If there is no large-scale vaccine available or significant improvement in testing as previewed by Yale’s SalivaDirect COVID-19 test, winter teams, including men’s and women’s basketball, will not be permitted to play their traditional 4 1/2 month schedules (or 2 1/2 months in the Ivy League’s case).

Could something shorter and less traditional be done to allow college hoops to be played this winter?

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Ivy hoops roundup – May 11, 2020

Yale women’s incoming class announced

Yale women’s basketball announced its three-member Class of 2024 Monday. The class consists of:

  • Brenna McDonald, a 6-foot-2 forward from Natick, Mass. who was named to the Boston Globe Dream Team her senior year
  • Haley Sabol, a 6-foot-2 forward from Pittsburgh who was a first-team all-state selection her junior and senior years for Episcopal High School in Alexandria, Va.
  • Elles van der Maas, a 6-foot-2 guard from Sydney who made the 2018 All-Australian team

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Post-double OT fatigue, Boeheim’s absence nonfactors as Cornell dominates Brown

Cornell seized a lead with 14:51 left in the first half and never looked back, beating Brown in dominating fashion, 63-45, at Newman Arena Saturday night.

After a back-and-forth first five minutes, the Big Red (6-17, 3-7 Ivy) jumped ahead by as many as 14 in the first half but went to the locker room up nine.

Cornell came back out hot, scoring the first seven in the second half. Bryan Knapp hit a jumper, Kobe Dickson converted a layup, and Terrance McBride drilled a three to push the Big Red lead to 16. They led by 20 at times in the second half but would eventually win by 18.

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Cornell falls to efficient Penn in Sunday matinee

ITHACA, N.Y. – Cornell was unable to slow Penn down on offense in a rare Sunday afternoon game at Newman Arena, falling to the visitors, 79-73 in a game that tipped off 20 hours than it was supposed to because of a postponement due to inclement weather.

“We needed a couple more stops and a couple more plays made,” Cornell coach Brian Earl said. “They fought a hard game last night, and us, so these games are always difficult.”

The Big Red (5-14, 2-4 Ivy) opened the game on an 8-2 run, but the Quakers (12-7, 4-2) came back and led by as many as eight in the first half. Terrance McBride connected on a nifty post move with two seconds left to cut the Penn lead to three at the halftime buzzer. He wound up with 15 points.

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Yale overcomes 16-point second-half deficit to push past Cornell, 74-67

ITHACA, N.Y. – The Cornell Big Red led by as many as 16 points in the third quarter, but Yale stormed back to avenge last season’s Big Red sweep of the Bulldogs and remain undefeated in Ivy League play, escaping Newman Arena Saturday with a 74-67 win.

“A really disappointing second half,” Cornell coach Dayna Smith said. “Their top two leading scorers stepped up when they needed to.”

Those two would be Roxy Barahman and Camilla Emsbo. Each ended the first half with six points but finished with 26 points and 24 points, respectively.

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Cornell men’s basketball 2018-19 season recap

With Stone Gettings transferring from Cornell, expectations went from a possible contender to a team that may not even get 10 wins. But despite not getting into the Ivy League Tournament, the Big Red had a pretty solid season and they far surpassed their expectations. Matt Morgan was still Matt Morgan, but forwards Jimmy Boeheim and Josh Warren stepped it up and each had big roles as secondary scorers while seniors Steven Julian and Joel Davis anchored the defense. The team played some great games, including almost-upsets over Yale and Syracuse and a sweep of Harvard.

A lot of Cornell’s problem throughout the season was poor rebounding. The Big Red could hold teams to 35-45 percent from the field most nights, yet still lose. For context, they were 352nd out of 353 Division I teams in offensive rebound percentage.

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Ivy League announces conference tournament rotation schedule through 2025

On Wednesday, the Ivy League office announced that Harvard will host the 2020 Ivy League Tournaments on Sat., Mar. 14 and Sun. Mar. 15. In addition, the league also scheduled the tournament locations through the 2024-25 season, with each of the conference’s schools that haven’t already hosted getting a turn.

After holding the first two Ivy tournaments at Penn’s Palestra (seating 8,722) and scheduling this year’s event at Yale’s John J. Lee Amphitheater (2,800), the league has elected to follow a southern-central-northern pattern for future sites.  After Harvard’s Lavietes Pavilion (1,636), Ivy Madness will travel down south to Princeton’s Jadwin Gymnasium (6,854) in 2021, followed by trips to Brown’s Pizzitola Sports Center (2,800) in 2022 and Cornell’s Newman Arena (4,473) in 2023.  The event will move to the northern-most site at Dartmouth’s Leede Arena (2,100) in 2024, before finishing the rotation at Columbia’s Levien Gymnasium (2,700) in the spring of 2025.

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Cornell fights back but falls to Princeton in overtime

Despite a comparatively quiet night from Matt Morgan, the Cornell Big Red were able to overcome a 10-point second half hole to force overtime against the visiting Princeton Tigers.

But unlike last season at Newman Arena, Cornell couldn’t put the Tigers away in extra time, as Princeton won its seventh straight game to improve to 12-5 (4-0 Ivy) and remain first in the conference, while Cornell dropped back to .500 at 10-10 (2-2) and still very much in the Ivy Madness picture.

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