March 7, 2009

Harvard Tops Bulldogs in Season Finale, 91-57

March 7, 2009

Box Score

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. - In each of the last two seasons, the Yale women's basketball team has played spoiler for Harvard, posting the lone blemish on the Crimson's 13-1 record in 2007 and denying the Cantabs of an outright Ivy League Championship last season. However, despite three Bulldogs reaching double figures, they could not complete the three-peat on Saturday night at the Lavietes Basketball Pavilion in Cambridge, as Harvard claimed a 91-57 victory over Yale to stay alive in the race for the Ancient Eight crown.

With the loss, Yale wraps up the 2008-09 season with a record of 11-17 overall- a two-win improvement from last season- and 4-10 in the Ivy League. Harvard improves to 19-8 overall and 11-2 in league contests, one game behind Dartmouth with a head-to-head meeting with Big Green left on the schedule.

Sophomore forward Mady Gobrecht led the Bulldogs with 14 points in the season finale. Junior forward Melissa Colborne netted 11 points to move into ninth all-time in Yale history with 1,171. Sophomore guard Yoyo Greenfield also notched double figures with 10 points. Freshman forward Michelle Cashen led the Bulldogs with five rebounds to go along with her five points.

The Crimson came out on fire, jumping out to an 8-0 lead over the first 3:24 to force a Yale timeout. Harvard kept on running, led by senior Emily Tay, as it grabbed a 22-6 lead with 11:57 left in the half. Tay knocked down her first seven shots as the Crimson shot 10-for-15 (66.7%) over that span. Yale settled down, and began to contain Harvard's frenetic offensive pace, but could not overcome a 6-for-25 (24%) shooting performance for the half, as the Crimson entered the locker room leading, 41-17.

Colborne led Yale with six first-half points. Mady Gobrecht and freshman guard Brianna Segerson added four, and sophomore forward Victoria Perez contributed three free throws to round out the Bulldogs' scoring. Perez and Cashen led the way on the boards with three each. Tay netted 20 points in the half, shooting 10-for-13 from the floor, and grabbed a half-best five rebounds. The Crimson shot a blistering 17-for-30 (56.7%) from the field and went 3-for-4 (75%) from behind the arc, while the Bulldogs failed to connect on any of their six attempts from downtown. Yale won the battle on the boards, 19-16, but committed 15 turnovers that led to 16 Harvard points.

The second half was more of the same, as the home team led by as many as 38 points en route to a 91-57 win. Tay finished with a game-high 34 points, leading three Crimson players in double figures. The Yale offense played a much more aggressive second half, posting 40 points after the intermission, but the Bulldogs could not contend with an 18-for-24 (75%) shooting half by the Cantabs.

"Harvard was lucky to catch us when they did," said Chris Gobrecht, the Joel E. Smilow, Class of 1954 Head Coach of Women's Basketball at Yale. "We look forward to playing them again next season."

In the final game of her career, Yale senior captain Jamie Van Horne knocked down one three-pointer to tie the Yale single-season record of 62, held by Maria Smear `03. Van Horne will finish her run as the all-time leader in three-point field goals at Yale with 216, the fifth-highest total in Ivy League history, and all-time leader in games played with 110.

report filed by Drew M. Kingsley, Yale Sports Publicity