Men's Basketball Closes 2010 by Hosting MIT Friday Afternoon
Sophomore Kyle Casey scored 11 points in Harvard's 74-69 win over Monmouth Wednesday (Gil Talbot).
For the second time in three days, Harvard hosts a non-conference opponent at Lavietes Pavilion, as the Crimson welcomes Cambridge rival MIT Friday afternoon.
Harvard has won the last seven meetings between the schools and leads the all-time series by a 47-9 margin. Last season, the Crimson earned a 88-61 victory, led by Jeremy Lin's 18 point-effort at Lavietes Pavilion on Dec. 28, 2009. Harvard scored 54 points in the paint and shot 55.0 percent from the field for the game
Last Time Out
The Crimson battled back from a seven-point deficit at halftime and was down nine points with 8:23 remaining, but emerged with a 74-69 victory at home over Monmouth Wednesday evening. Laurent Rivard led all scorers with 18 points, as he shot 5-of-7 from the floor and 6-of-6 from the foul line. Oliver McNally (14 points), Brandyn Curry (12), Kyle Casey (11) and Christian Webster (11) also reached double figures. Curry handed out eight assists, blocked two shots, made two steals and came down with five rebounds.
MIT's Last Time Out
The Engineers, who have won eight straight games, is coming off an 82-61 victory on the road at Lesley Dec. 11. MIT shot 48.3 percent as a team overall and was 14-of-29 from beyond the arc in the win. Jamie Karraker tallied 24 points, while Noel Hollingsworth added 22 and grabbed eight rebounds, including three on the offensive side of the glass. Fourteen MIT players saw action against Lesley with eight of those players scoring at least one basket.
Making The Most Of It
Harvard tied its season-high with 28 free throws on 35 chances (.800) in its 74-69 win over Monmouth Dec. 29. The Crimson, which also made 28-of-35 free throws against WPI Dec. 7, had two players with perfect performances from the foul line against Monmouth: Oliver McNally (6-of-6) and Laurent Rivard (6-of-6).
McNally (.943, 33-of-35) ranks seventh in the country in free-throw percentage, while Laurent Rivard (.960, 24-of-25) does not quite qualify with enough attempts. The Crimson ranks fourth in the nation as a team with a 78.9 percent success rate from the charity stripe.
Harvard owns a 6-0 record this season when scoring 70 or more points and is 2-2 when scoring less than that. The Crimson has allowed an opponent to score more than 70 points on only two occasions (Boston University, 71, Dec. 11 and No. 4/4 Connecticut, 81-52, Dec. 22).
Harvard vs. The NEWMAC
The Crimson is already 1-0 this season against the NEWMAC, having downed WPI, 69-54, Dec. 7. The Crimson is 86-24 all-time against current members of the NEWMAC.
Just Grab It
Harvard owns a 6-1 record when outrebounding its opponents this season. The Crimson is only 2-2 when the team is outrebounded.
The Crimson has earned victories over teams from the Patriot League, Atlantic Sun, Northeast Conference, Big XII, Atlantic 10, NEWMAC and America East this season. Harvard defeated teams from 10 different conferences during the 2009-10 season and has already topped teams from seven different conferences this year.
Harvard Against Ranked Opponents
When Harvard played No. 4 Connecticut Dec. 22, it marked the first time the Crimson had faced a team ranked that high since Harvard fell at No. 1 Duke, 118-65, Nov. 30, 1991. Harvard earned the program's first-ever victory over a ranked opponent when the team downed No. 17 Boston College, 82-70, Jan. 7, 2009.
Top Of The Ivy League
The Crimson owns a 8-3 record (.727) through its first 10 games, putting the team second in overall winning percentage in the Ivy League, trailing only Princeton (10-3, .769).
Scoring From All Areas
Six Harvard players reached double digits in scoring against Boston University Dec 11: Oliver McNally, Christian Webster, Brandyn Curry, Laurent Rivard, Andrew Van Nest and Keith Wright. Harvard had at least four players score 10 or more points five times: (Holy Cross Nov. 17, Fordham Dec. 1, WPI Dec. 7, Boston University Dec. 11 and Monmouth Dec. 29).
Harvard has grabbed 111 offensive rebounds this season and has scored 113 second-chance points. Keith Wright paces the Crimson with 34 offensive boards, while Christian Webster (16) and Brandyn Curry (13) have also been key players on the offensive glass for Harvard.
Defense Wins Games
Harvard leads the Ivy League in scoring defense, allowing the opposition only 64.8 points per game this season. The Crimson also paces the Ancient Eight in scoring margin (+5.6), more than two points better than Princeton (+3.3).
Opponents are shooting only 37.4 percent from long distance against the Crimson and are shooting 44.2 percent from the floor overall against Harvard.
Feeling It From Long Range
At least one Harvard player has made at least two three pointers in all 11 games this season. In the win over Fordham, Harvard made 15 threes as a team, with Laurent Rivard making five, as the Crimson was just two treys away from matching a program record (17 vs. Rice in 2002).
The Crimson has hit 92 shots from long range on the season and is shooting 36.5 percent from three-point range. Harvard is 5-0 when making 10 or more three pointers in a game and 3-3 when making less than 10 treys.
Harvard Against the BCS
The Crimson will play four teams from BCS conferences this season: Colorado (Big XII), Michigan (Big Ten), Connecticut (Big East) and Boston College (ACC). Harvard, which went 1-2 against BCS teams last year, boasts a 1-2 mark against BCS schools this season after beating Colorado Nov. 28, but falling at Michigan Dec. 1 and at Connecticut Dec. 22. The Crimson, which plays Boston College Jan. 5, has defeated the Eagles in the last two meetings between the Boston-area schools.
Keith Wright has made 63-of-101 shots from the floor this season for a shooting percentage of .624, which ranks 18th in the country entering the week behind. Wright, who is a 54 percent shooter for his career, leads the Ivy League in shooting and 3.1 offensive rebounds per contest, is second with 1.6 blocks and 8.5 rebounds per game and fourth with 14.9 points per contest. Wright also paces the Crimson in scoring and has led Harvard in points in five of 11 games this year.
Winning By Effort
The Crimson has scored 113 points on second-chance opportunities this season, including a season-high 19 in the win over Colorado Nov. 28.
Keeping Everyone Involved
Harvard handed out 22 assists on 25 field goals in the Crimson's 82-66 win over Colorado Nov. 28. The Crimson then dished out 21 helpers on 28 field goals in the 80-57 victory over Fordham Dec. 1. The team also had 16 assists on 19 buckets against Monmouth Dec. 29.
Owning A Long Distance Plan
Laurent Rivard made five three-pointers in back-to-back games against Fordham Dec. 1, and Michigan Dec. 4. The Crimson freshman has buried 24 treys on the season, tying him with Christian Webster for the team lead. Webster has made 24 shots from long distance on 65 attempts (.369), while Rivard has made that many shots on 67 chances (.358).
Brandyn Curry handed out a career-high 12 assists in Harvard's 72-49 victory over Holy Cross Nov. 17. Curry leads the Crimson with 63 assists this season and is averaging 5.7 per game, which ranks first in the Ancient Eight and is 26th in the country.
In The Paint
Harvard scored more points in the paint than its opponents in 21 of 29 games during the 2009-10 campaign. The Crimson has 212 points in the paint this season, but has only enjoyed one single-game advantage over an opponent through 11 contests. Harvard owned a 22-18 edge in points in the paint in its 87-71 victory over Boston University Dec. 11.
Night and Day
The Crimson is 4-1 during evening games and 4-2 during afternoon contests this year.
Scoring In Bunches
Harvard is 3-0 this season when scoring 80 or more points, topping Colorado, 82-66, Nov. 28, Fordham, 80-57, Dec. 1, and Boston University, 87-71, Dec. 11.
Protecting The Ball
Harvard only turned the ball over nine times, a season-low, in its 80-57 victory over Fordham Dec. 1. Brandyn Curry had nine assists and only one turnover in that game. The Crimson had 10 turnovers in its 87-71 win over Boston University Dec. 11.
Oliver McNally leads the Ivy League with a +2.3 assist-to-turnover ratio, while Curry stands third in the conference (+2.0).
State of Massachusetts
Harvard plays five teams from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts this season: Holy Cross Nov. 17, WPI Dec. 7, Boston University Dec. 11, MIT Dec. 31 and Boston College Jan. 5. Harvard is 3-0 against teams from Massachusetts after beating Holy Cross, WPI and Boston University.
A Harvard player led his team in scoring while establishing a new career-high in points in four of Harvard's first seven games this season. Keith Wright tied a career-best with 22 points at George Mason Nov. 13, and Christian Webster netted 29 points in Harvard's victory at Mercer Nov. 20. Wright then upped his career-best to 24 in the Crimson's win at Bryant Nov. 24, while Laurent Rivard scored 21 in the victory over Fordham Dec. 1.
Laurent Rivard hit a total of 10 three-pointers in two games and averaged 18.0 points per game against Fordham Dec. 1, and Michigan Dec. 4 en route to Ivy League Rookie of the Week honors. Rivard scored a career-high 21 points against Fordham and added 15 points and five rebounds at Michigan. He has reached double digits in seven contests and has drilled at least two three-pointers in seven different games this season.
Harvard set a modern day record for consecutive home wins with 10 spanning from the 2008-09 season to 2009-10, including a program record nine straight wins against Division I teams. The Crimson is currently riding a nine-game winning streak at Lavietes Pavilion and is 6-0 at home this season.
Harvard has also collected a program record 14 consecutive victories against non-conference opponents at Lavietes dating back to the 2008-09 season.