First Full Weekend Of Ivy Play For Bulldogs
NEW HAVEN, Conn. – The first full weekend of Ivy play for Yale brings Harvard and Dartmouth to the John J. Lee Amphitheater inside Payne Whitney Gym. The Bulldogs host Harvard on Friday at 7 p.m. in a game that will be televised in Connecticut by WCTX (MyTV9) in addition to airing on the Ivy League Network. On Saturday, Yale has a date with Dartmouth at 7 p.m. That game airs on WatchESPN and the ILN. John Ryan (play-by-play) and Josh Hess (analysis) have the call of both games.
The Bulldogs (8-10, 1-1 Ivy) opened league play by splitting a home-and-home series with travel partner Brown. Both games – Yale's 78-72 win in New Haven and Brown's 81-80 victory in Providence - were decided in the final minutes. Despite settling for a split, there were encouraging signs for the Bulldogs.
Trey Phills was outstanding in the two games. In Yale's victory, he scored a career-high 23 points, grabbed seven rebounds and had five assists in 34 minutes. He followed that up with a 19-point, four-rebound effort the following week. In the two games, he was 14-of-18 from the field and 12-of-14 from the free throw line. Phills is averaging 8.3 points for the season.
Alex Copeland, who had been bothered recently by an ankle injury, erupted for a career-high 26 points last Friday at Brown. He was 10-of-13 from the field and made both of his three-point attempts. Copeland, who is second on the team in scoring (11.9 ppg.), is fourth in the Ivy League in field goal percentage (.516).
First year Paul Atkinson continued his accurate shooting. He connected on 5-of-7 shots from the field and remains the league leader in field goal percentage at .703.
As a team, Yale shot 50 percent from the field. The Bulldogs lead the league in field goal percentage at 47.9 percent and are third in scoring offense at 76.6 ppg.
Yale also leads the league and is 13th in the nation in assists per game at 17.7.
Miye Oni is Yale's top scorer, averaging 16.4 ppg., which is fifth in the league. Oni is among the league leaders in rebounding (8th, 5.5 rpg.), assists (6th, 3.3 per game), free throw percentage (9th, .702) and 3-point field goals made (6th, 2.4 per game).
Blake Reynolds is the third Bulldog averaging double figures in scoring at 10.7 ppg. Reynolds also is seventh in the league in rebounding (5.7 rpg.) and eighth in assists (2.9 per game).
Yale and Harvard have played eight times in the last three seasons and seven of the eight have been decided by 10 points or less. Two of the meetings have come in the post season - Yale's 73-71 victory in the semifinal of last winter's inaugural Ivy League Tournament and Harvard's 53-51 victory in an Ivy playoff in 2015. Yale leads the all-time series 120-78. The 120 wins are the most for the Bulldogs against any opponent. The first meeting was in 1901, a 41-16 Yale victory.
The Bulldogs have swept the season series from Dartmouth in each of the last two seasons and are 14-3 in their last 17 games with the Big Green. Alex Copeland (14) and Trey Phills (10) combined for 24 points in Yale's 73-64 win last year at Lee Amphitheater. The Bulldogs then scored 99 points in a 99-86 victory in Hanover, New Hampshire later in the season. Yale leads the all-time series with Dartmouth 113-97. The first meeting came in 1900 in Boston, a 10-8 Yale victory.
The Bulldogs last swept the Harvard-Dartmouth home weekend in 2016.
The Crimson (7-10, 2-0 Ivy) is in the middle of six straight road games. Harvard completed a season sweep of travel partner Dartmouth with a 62-57 overtime victory last Saturday. Seth Towns is the reigning Ivy League Player of the Week after scoring 26 points and grabbing six rebounds in the win over the Big Green. Bryce Aiken (16.0 ppg.) leads the team in scoring but has been limited to 11 games due to injury. Towns (14.0 ppg.) and Chris Lewis (11.7 ppg.) also average double figures in scoring. The Crimson lead the league in scoring defense (66.3 ppg.).
The Big Green plays at Brown on Friday before travelling to New Haven. Dartmouth (4-11, 0-2 Ivy) features a balanced scoring attack, led by Brendan Barry at 11.8 ppg. Miles Wright (11.7 ppg.), Taylor Johnson (11.5 ppg.) and Chris Knight (10.5 ppg.) also are double figure scorers. The Big Green rallied from a 17-point deficit and had a two-point lead late in regulation against Harvard before falling in overtime. The Big Green is shooting 37.8 percent from three-point range, which is second in the league.
Report filed by Tim Bennett (firstname.lastname@example.org), Yale Sports Publicity