Busy Stretch Continues For Bulldogs At JLA
Yale Game Notes | South Carolina State Game Notes
NEW HAVEN, Conn. – After a very challenging opening weekend, the friendly confines of the John J. Lee Amphitheater will be a welcome sight for the Bulldogs, who play their home opener on Tuesday night against South Carolina State. Tipoff is slated for 7 p.m., and the Ivy League Network has the video. In addition, the ILN production can be viewed on the Facebook Live on the Yale Athletics page.
Over the last five seasons, the Bulldogs are 50-14 in Lee Amphitheater. Yale had a 22-game home winning streak, which at the time was the fifth longest in the nation, ended by Harvard on Feb. 11, 2017, and the Bulldogs went the entire calendar year of 2016 without losing a home game.
Yale opened the season with a pair of games against teams that reached the NCAA Tournament a year ago and look poised to return in Creighton and Wisconsin. Despite a pair of losses, there were positives on the trip. Junior Blake Reynolds is off to a fast start. He averaged 16.0 points in the two games and shot 50 percent (6-of-12) from three-point range. In addition, first-year Paul Atkinson made his first two career starts and played well, averaging 8.5 points and 4.0 rebounds. Senior Noah Yates also has provided valuable minutes off the bench. He scored nine points and grabbed six rebounds at Wisconsin.
The Bulldogs are without the services of captain Makai Mason and forward Jordan Bruner, who were both expected to start but are injured. Sophomore Austin Williams and first-year Jalen Gabbidon are also both out with injuries.
Over the last four years, the Bulldogs have 82 victories, captured two Ivy League titles and won the first NCAA Tournament game in school history – over Baylor in 2016.
If the preseason prognosticators are to be believed, the Bulldogs could surpass last year's success. Many have Yale as the preseason Ivy favorite, and in the official league preseason poll, the Bulldogs received the most first-place votes (8) and were picked to finish second.
The formula for success remains the same – rebounding, defense and sharing the ball. The Bulldogs led the Ivy League in rebounding margin for the sixth straight year last year, held opponents to 42.9 percent from the field, including 32.9 percent from three-point range, and averaged an Ivy League best 15.7 assists per game.
2017 HALL OF FAME CLASSIC
Tuesday's game is the third of four Yale will play in the 2017 Hall of Fame Classic. The final one will be at Alcorn State the day before Thanksgiving.
Yale and South Carolina State are playing for the first time. SC State is the second first-time opponent for the Bulldogs this season, joining Creighton.
SCOUTING SOUTH CAROLINA STATE
South Carolina State also is in the midst of a busy start to the season. The Bulldogs dropped an 85-50 decision at Wisconsin in their opener last Friday and then fell 92-51 at Boston College on Sunday. After Tuesday's game with Yale, South Carolina State plays at UCLA on Friday. Donte Wright scored 13 points to lead the team at Wisconsin. Janai Raynor Powell had a team-best nine points off the bench against Boston College. The Bulldogs were picked seventh in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) Preseason Poll and return seven letter winners and welcome six newcomers to the squad this season.
Yale plays at Albany on Friday.
Report filed by Tim Bennett (firstname.lastname@example.org), Yale Sports Publicity