Princeton (16-9) at Yale (12-17)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Friday, March 8, 7 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: John J. Lee Amphitheater (2,532) -- New Haven, Connecticut. Television: None. Home Record: Princeton 9-4, Yale 6-4. Away Record: Princeton 7-4, Yale 5-11. Neutral Record: Princeton 0-0, Yale 1-2. Conference Record: Princeton 9-2, Yale 6-6. Series Record: Princeton leads, 144-83.
GAME NOTES: The Princeton Tigers will try to keep pace atop the Ivy League standings on Friday night, as they head to John J. Lee Amphitheater for a matchup with the Yale Bulldogs.
Princeton is in the midst of a four-game win streak to improve to 16-9 overall, which includes a 68-63 win at home over Dartmouth last Saturday. The Tigers are alone in first place in the Ivy League at 9-2, a half game ahead of Harvard.
Yale's season overall has been anything but impressive, as it has gone just 12-17, but it has broken even in Ivy League play with a 6-6 mark, which ties it with Brown for third place. The Bulldogs had been losers of back-to-back games heading into their latest bout, but they captured an impressive 79-70 win at Cornell.
Princeton leads the all-time series with Yale, 144-83, which includes a 46-34 mark at Lee Amphitheater. However, the Bulldogs took down the Tigers on the road early last month, 69-65.
Despite trailing for most of the first half in its latest game against Dartmouth, Princeton managed to take control by shooting in excess of 54 percent from the field over the final 20 minutes to come away with the five- point win. Will Barrett was the catalyst in the triumph, scoring 24 points on 8-of-17 from the floor (5-of-11 from 3-point range), to go along with eight rebounds. T.J. Bray added 21 points, while Ian Hummer scored 13 points, but on just 3-of-10 accuracy from the field. Although the Tigers' scoring offense is simply modest by Ivy League standards (64.0 ppg), they have been able to stake claim to the top spot in the standings by holding opposing teams to a league- low 57.0 ppg. Hummer is a strong contender for Ivy League Player of the Year, as he averages 16.3 ppg, 6.6 rpg and 4.0 apg, all of which rank in the top- five in the conference. Denton Koon brings 10.5 ppg to the table on 55.4 percent from the field, while Bray (9.4 ppg) and Barrett (9.2 ppg) are also solid contributors.
Yale built a 14-point halftime lead against Cornell the last time out, and while the Big Red made a run in the second half to close the gap, the Bulldogs were able to hang on thanks to a great night shooting from both the field (24- of-51) and the foul line (25-of-31). Matt Townsend netted 19 points to lead the way, Austin Morgan chipped in 15 points, while Brandon Sherrod and Greg Kelley poured in 13 and 10 points, respectively. Despite having a losing record this season, Yale actually scores more points per game (66.5 ppg) than it allows (66.4 ppg), and it is the league's top team on the glass with a +3.6 rebounding margin. Morgan is the leading scoring with 11.1 ppg, and while he converts less than 37 percent of his field goal attempts, he is one of the nation's top free-throw shooters (.908). Justin Sears is in the midst of a solid freshman campaign with 10.0 ppg and 5.6 rpg, and while no one else averages double figures, eight others net between 4.2 and 7.5 ppg.
Yale proved earlier this season that it can take down Princeton, so the threat of an upset is ever present in this one, but the Tigers have been playing so well of late, even on the road, that they'll find a way to pull away down the stretch.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Princeton 65, Yale 63
03/08 10:34:59 ET