NEW HAVEN, Conn. – Yale got off to a hot start and led wire-to-wire in a 73-51 victory over Brown in its Ivy League home opener. The Bulldogs earn their first Ivy League win of the season and move to 10-7 (1-3 Ivy), while the Bears fall to 11-6 (2-2 Ivy).
Yale had not played a home game since Dec. 7, and after going 2-4 in 6 straight road games, it felt good to be back at home. Yale trailed 21-6 early last Friday and eventually lost 76-73 at Brown, but the Bulldogs turned the tables this time around. Tonight, Yale got off to a blistering 21-5 start and cruised to a 22-point win.
The Bulldogs started the second quarter leading 21-8. After a 16-11 Brown run brought the Bears within 8, Yale scored the last 4 points of the quarter to take a 36-24 lead into the half. The Bulldogs kept the momentum up in the third quarter, outscoring the Bears 18-12 to finish the frame leading 54-36.
Yale did not take its foot off the gas pedal in the fourth, outscoring Brown 19-15 to finish things off with a 73-51 victory.
Freshman Megan Gorman had an inspired effort for the Bulldogs, grabbing a career-high 15 rebounds in 26 minutes of play. She added 10 points for her second career double-double. Juniors Jen Berkowitz and Tamara Simpson led the scoring for Yale with 15 points apiece. Berkowitz added 6 rebounds and 3 blocks while Simpson registered 5 steals. Simpson, the Ivy League steals leader, is now within 9 steals of tying the Yale record for steals in a career.
Yale also got some substantial help from its bench play. Sophomore Alexandra Maund scored 10 points on an efficient 4-for-5 from the field and 2-for-2 from the line for her first career double-digit scoring performance. Meanwhile, freshman Roxy Barahman returned to action after missing the last 10 games with a hand injury. She recorded 2 points and a steal in 6 minutes of play. Overall, Yale's bench outscored Brown's 22-6.
Brown sophomore Erika Steeves led the Bears with 15 points. The team's leading scorer for the season, freshman Justine Gaziano, joined her in double figures with 11 points. But Gaziano struggled to get there, shooting 3-for-14 from the field.
Yale did an excellent job containing Brown's high-octane offense in general. The Bears scored 51 points and shot just 18-for-71 from the field (.254), well below their Ivy League-leading averages of 74.4 points and .430 from the field, and even further below their totals from last Friday's game (76 points, .482 from the field).
Yale senior Lena Munzer said of her team's performance, "Tonight we just came out with a ton of energy and with a chip on our shoulder. Every game is sacred and Brown took one away from us last weekend. If that's not enough motivation I don't know what is. The energy from everyone, whether you played 1 minute or 40 minutes, was incredible."
The Bulldogs stay at home for their next two Ivy League contests. Yale faces Columbia next Friday, Feb. 3, and Cornell next Saturday, Feb. 4. Both games start at 6 p.m.
Filed by Andy Dougherty, Yale Sports Publicity