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The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Friday, November 16, 7:30 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Lavietes Pavilion (2,195) -- Cambridge, Massachusetts. Television: None. Home Record: Manhattan 0-0, Harvard 1-0. Away Record: Manhattan 0-1, Harvard 0-1. Neutral Record: Manhattan 0-0, Harvard 0-0. Conference Record: Manhattan 0-0, Harvard 0-0. Series Record: Series is tied, 4-4.
GAME NOTES: The Harvard Crimson welcome the Manhattan Jaspers to Cambridge for a none-conference matchup at the Lavietes Pavilion. .
Manhattan had the unenviable task of taking on a powerhouse in its season- opener, and was blown out by the second-ranked Louisville Cardinals, 79-51. Coach Steve Masiello is in his second season at the helm of Manhattan after leading the Jaspers to 21 victories a year ago. Manhattan is once again one of the favorites in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference and look to improve on last year's third-place finish.
Harvard lost a close battle to Massachusetts in its last outing to even the Crimson's record at 1-1 on the year. The 67-64 loss to the Minutemen came after a 69-54 win over MIT to begin the season. Harvard, which found its way into the top-25 last year, won its second straight Ivy League title and earned a spot in the NCAA Tournament, has gone 29-1 at the Lavietes Pavilion in the last 30 home games.
The series is tied at 4-4, with Manhattan winning the last bout, 77-66 in January of 1988.
The Jaspers played the toughest team on their schedule in Louisville for their season opener and lost by 28 points. As they travel to Harvard they are hoping for a more evenly matched game. Rhamel Brown was certainly not intimidated by the high-powered Cardinals, recording a double-double in the loss with 18 points and 15 rebounds. He was joined in double-figure scoring by Michael Alvarado, who added 13 points. Manhattan really struggled with its ball- handling against Louisville, turning the ball over an unforgivable 27 times. Even when the team was able to get a shot off, the results where less than satisfactory, converting just 35.7 percent of the time from the floor. There wasn't much offensive help for Brown and Alvarado, as the remainder of the team managed to chip in 20 combined points.
The Crimson opened their season with 69-54 win over MIT but then fell short to Massachusetts, 67-64, in a competitive game. The loss came despite career performances from both Wesley Saunders (18 points) and Siyania Chambers (14 points, seven assists). After two games only two players are averaging double- figure scoring for Harvard, Saunders with 14.5 ppg and Chambers with 11.5 ppg. Having lost star players Kyle Casey and Brandyn Curry due to offseason cheating scandal. The rest of the team needs to step up if the Crimson want to put together another solid season.
Although Harvard has a tremendous record at home in the last 30 games, the Crimson lack the overall talent they need to be anything like the team they sent out on the floor during those games. Manhattan should earn their first win of the season in this one.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Manhattan 66, Harvard 61
11/16 10:35:20 ET
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