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McNally Nets Career-High 23 Points, as Men's Basketball Cruises Past Columbia, 77-57

Oliver McNally hit five three-pointers and was 8-of-10 from the field in the win (photo courtesy of Mitchell Layton)

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Oliver McNally scored 20 of his 23 points in the first half Saturday night as the Harvard men’s basketball team cruised past visiting Columbia by a score of 77-57 at Lavietes Pavilion. McNally shot 8-of-10 from the floor, including 5-of-7 from long range.

Oliver McNally post-game interview and highlights

Jeremy Lin chipped in with 11 points, while Kyle Casey and Dee Giger added 10 points apiece for the Crimson. Harvard now moves within one victory of tying its program record as the Crimson improves to 18-6 overall and 7-3 in the Ivy League. Columbia dips to 9-15, 3-7 with the loss.

McNally was 7-of-8 from the floor in the first half including a 4-of-5 mark from long range as he surpassed his previous career-high in scoring (17) in just 13 minutes of work. As a team, Harvard was 8-of-13 from long range (.583) while shooting 55.6 percent in the opening session (15-27 FG).

Columbia led, 10-9, after five minutes of action, but Harvard went on a 15-0 run, started by a McNally three-pointer. Harvard continued to shoot well for the remainder of the stanza and headed into the locker room with a 19-point advantage, 45-26.

In the second half, Harvard maintained a double-digit lead throughout, going up by as much as 24. With 9:39 remaining, Casey had the highlight play of the evening, as he stole the ball at top of the key in the Harvard zone. Casey dribbled the length of the floor before leaping for a dunk to the delight of the 1,744 spectators at Lavietes.

The Crimson, which set a season-high with 32 free throws Friday evening, hit 10-of-12 in the second half against the Lions. Harvard’s bench, led by McNally and Giger, outscored Columbia by a 40-18 margin for the game.