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Brown Edges Yale 75-66 In Ivy Opener

Michael Grace. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)
Michael Grace. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)

Sands Paces Bulldogs With 15 Points, Eight Rebounds

NEW HAVEN, Conn. - Steve Gruber scored a career-high 15 points and Andrew McCarthy added 14 points and eight rebounds as Brown handed Yale a 75-66 loss in the Ivy League opener for both teams before an enthusiastic crowd of 1,683 at the John J. Lee Amphitheater.  Michael Sands paced the Bulldogs with 15 points and eight rebounds.

Yale (6-12, 0-1 Ivy) made four more field goals (26 to 22) than Brown, but the Bears were 7-of-18 from three-point range and 24-of-29 from the foul line. The Bulldogs made just 3-of-18 treys and were 11-of-18 from the free throw line.

"Offensively, we got a lot of open shots that we've got to make," said James Jones, The Joel E. Smilow, Class of 1954 Head Coach of Men's Basketball. "They packed in their defense and made it hard for us to get to the rim."

The Bulldogs had four players finish in double figures in scoring. Alex Zampier and freshman Michael Grace each had 14, while Jordan Gibson contributed 13.

Adrian Williams scored 12 points for the Bears and helped hold Zampier to four points below his season average. Matt Mullery, who leads Brown in scoring but was limited due to an ankle injury, had only five points, but contributed seven assists.

"We tried to help on [Mullery] too much," Jones said. "He was able to make plays for his teammates.

Brown (7-11, 1-0 Ivy) led for virtually the entire first half before the Bulldogs scored the final seven points, including a Grace three-pointer with five seconds left that gave Yale a 31-29 lead, its first since holding a 2-0 advantage.

The Bulldogs took their biggest lead of the game, 37-32, on Porter Braswell's layup early in the second half.  The score was tied at 43-43 with 13:38 left, but the Bears used a 12-2 run, capped by a Gruber three-pointer, to seize control.

Yale got as close as three, 55-52, on Sands' jumper with 7:34 remaining, but Matt Sullivan answered immediately with a three-pointer, and Brown had the lead back to 12, 65-53, after McCarthy's layup with 2:42 left.

The Bears shot 48 percent (12-of-25) from the field in the second half.

The Bulldogs outrebounded Brown 38-36 and had six blocked shots.

The same two teams will meet again next Friday in Providence. Tipoff at the Pizzitola Center is slated for 7 p.m.

Report filed by Tim Bennett, Yale Sports Publicity