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February 1, 2013

Men's Basketball Preview for February 1-2

Complete Men's Basketball Weekly Release in pdf format

Photo courtesy of Princeton Athletic Communications

PRINCETON, N.J. -- The frenzy of February signifies the start of the most crucial part of the Ivy League men's basketball season as the grueling Friday-Saturday portion of the 2012-13 schedule kicks in.

Harvard (10-6, 2-0 Ivy League) hopes to continue its winning ways to start the conference slate hosting Yale (7-12, 1-1 Ivy) and Brown (7-9, 1-1 Ivy) on back-to-back nights. Head coach Tommy Amaker's squad has been tough against Ancient Eight opponents over the past four seasons with a 36-8 (.818) record. Sophomore guard/forward Wesley Saunders has scored in double figures in each of the Crimson's first 16 games to become first Harvard player to reach double digits in scoring in at least consecutive 10 games since Keith Wright tallied 10 or more points in 19-straight contests between Jan. 22, 2011 and Nov. 24, 2011.

Yale has lost three of the last four meetings with Harvard but owns more wins (115) over the Crimson than any other opponent. The Bulldogs are going to need their top scorer, senior guard Austin Morgan (11.5 ppg), to have a hot night on the offensive end in order to get revenge from a season sweep a year ago. A win in Cambridge would give Yale momentum going into its Saturday night clash with Dartmouth (4-12, 0-2), a team the Elis have defeated 11 times in their last 12 meetings.

Coming off an overtime loss in New Haven, Brown has its focus on getting back into the win column. The Bears feature the League's top two rebounders in sophomore forward Rafael Maia (7.9 rpg) and freshman forward Cedric Kuakumensah (7.6 rpg). Kuakumensah leads the conference in blocks at 2.2 per game.

Dartmouth also enters the weekend still suffering from the sting of an overtime defeat in its last game. The Big Green has been tough on the glass as of late, outrebounding its opponents 150-111 in its last four games. Freshman forward Connor Boehm has made an impression in his rookie campaign, most recently posting his second career double-double (14 points, 11 rebounds) in the overtime loss at Harvard.

Princeton (8-7, 1-0 Ivy) also looks to keep pace with Harvard to start League play but has a tall order with Cornell (9-10, 1-1 Ivy) and Columbia (9-7, 1-1 Ivy) coming to Jadwin for the weekend. The Tigers have an 18-game home Ivy League winning streak on the line in their Friday night battle with the Big Red. A key matchup will be on showcase as Princeton senior forward Ian Hummer (15.5 ppg, 6.5 rpg) meets Cornell sophomore forward Shonn Miller (10.3 ppg, 7.4 rpg) in a frontcourt battle.

On Saturday, another streak is on the line as Princeton defends its 19-game winning streak against Columbia on the NBC Sports Network. The Lions' last win in Jadwin Gym was Feb. 13, 1992. Columbia leans on the leadership of seniors Brian Barbour (13.6 ppg, 4.8 apg) on the wing and Mark Cisco (9.4 ppg, 5.9 rpg) in the post to put the Lions in the position to pull out the elusive win on the Tigers' home court.

Penn (3-15, 0-1) hopes to get a much-needed victory of its own over the weekend with Columbia and Cornell coming into The Palestra. The Quakers have lost 10 of their last 11 games, though Jerome Allen's team played inspired in a loss at Temple on Jan. 23. Junior forward Fran Dougherty should give Penn a boost with his return to the court for the first time in eight games. Despite only playing in 10 of 18 games this season, Dougherty is still second on the team in points scored (157) behind classmate Miles Cartwright (230).

Brown (7-9, 1-1 Ivy) at Dartmouth (4-12, 0-2 Ivy)
Date
: Friday, February 1 – 7 p.m.
Location
: Leede Arena • Hanover, N.H.
Brown-Dartmouth Series: Dartmouth leads, 76-69
Last Meeting: Dartmouth 58, Brown 53 • 2/18/12 • Hanover, N.H.
Live Stats | Video
Brown Game Notes | Dartmouth Game Notes

Columbia (9-7, 1-1 Ivy) at Penn (3-15, 0-1 Ivy)
Date: Friday, February 1 – 7 p.m.
Location: The Palestra • Philadelphia
Columbia-Penn Series: Penn leads, 136-85
Last Meeting: Penn 61, Columbia 59 (ot) • 2/18/12 • Philadelphia
Live Stats | Video
Columbia Game Notes | Penn Game Notes

Cornell (9-10, 1-1 Ivy) at Princeton (8-7, 1-0 Ivy)
Date: Friday, February 1 – 7 p.m.
Location: Jadwin Gymnasium • Princeton, N.J.
Cornell-Princeton Series: Princeton leads, 137-79
Last Meeting: Princeton 75, Cornell 57 • 2/18/12 • Princeton, N.J.
Live Stats | Video
Cornell Game Notes | Princeton Game Notes

Yale (7-12, 1-1 Ivy) at Harvard (10-6, 2-0 Ivy)
Date: Friday, February 1 – 7 p.m.
Location: Lavietes Pavilion • Cambridge, Mass.
Yale-Harvard Series: Yale leads, 115-71
Last Meeting: Harvard 66, Yale 51 • 2/18/12 • Cambridge, Mass.
Live Stats | Video
Yale Game Notes | Harvard Game Notes

Columbia at Princeton
Date: Saturday, February 2 – 6 p.m.
Location: Jadwin Gymnasium • Princeton, N.J.
Television: NBC Sports Network
Columbia-Princeton Series: Princeton leads, 143-84
Last Meeting: Princeton 77-66 • 2/17/12 • Princeton, N.J.
Live Stats | Audio
Columbia Game Notes| Princeton Game Notes

Brown at Harvard
Date: Saturday, February 2 – 7 p.m.
Location: Lavietes Pavilion • Cambridge, Mass.
Brown-Harvard Series: Harvard leads, 92-74
Last Meeting: Harvard 69, Brown 42 • 2/17/12 • Cambridge, Mass.
Live Stats | Video
Brown Game Notes| Harvard Game Notes

Cornell at Penn
Date: Saturday, February 2 – 7 p.m.
Location: The Palestra • Philadelphia
Cornell-Penn Series: Penn leads, 145-73
Last Meeting: Penn 73, Cornell 66 • 2/17/12 • Philadelphia
Live Stats | Video
Cornell Game Notes | Penn Game Notes

Yale at Dartmouth
Date: Saturday, February 2 – 7 p.m.
Location: Leede Arena • Hanover, N.H.
Yale-Dartmouth Series: Yale leads, 105-95
Last Meeting: Yale 70, Dartmouth 61 • 1/12/13 • Hanover, N.H.
Live Stats | Video
Yale Game Notes | Dartmouth Game Notes