Photo of Christine Matera courtesy of Gil Talbot.
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Junior co-captain
Christine Matera drained a three-pointer with 1.3 seconds left on
the clock to give the Harvard women’s basketball team a 55-52
win over Penn Friday at Lavietes Pavilion. The Crimson is 11-0 at
home this season, 19-7 overall and 10-2 in Ivy League play.
Freshman Victoria Lippert led the Crimson with 15 points, while junior Jackie Alemany grabbed nine rebounds to pace the Crimson on the boards. Sophomore Caitlin Rowland tied a career-high with 11 points. Classmate Brogan Berry handed out six assists to move into seventh on the single season list with 149.
Lippert scored eight of Harvard’s 10 points by the first media timeout as the Crimson held on to an 8-6 advantage. The teams traded leads over the next 12 minutes before Penn used a 11-2 run to turn a 21-20 deficit into a 31-23 lead with 1:21 remaining in the first frame. A three-pointer from Emma Golen cut the lead to 31-26 10 seconds later. But Penn’s Sarah Bucar put up a basket with just two ticks on the clock to put the visiting team up 33-26 at the break.
A traditional three-point play by Berry three minutes into the second session cut Penn’s lead to three at 37-34. Jess Knapp scored four straight to take the lead back out to seven with 16:09 remaining in the game. Rowland adds two free throws and a trey to pull the Crimson to within 43-39. After a called timeout by the Penn coach and a media timeout Lippert nailed a jumper and after a Quaker turnover drained a shot from beyond the line to give the Crimson its first lead of the second half, 44-43 with 10 minutes to play in the game.
Berry stole the ball off a Penn turnover and ran in for the fast-break lay-up to pull the home team to within 51-50 with 5:09 left on the clock. Markley sunk two free throws from the line with 1:19 left to give the Crimson a 52-51 lead. Knapp made 1-of-2 shot from the charity stripe to tie the game with 27 seconds on the clock. After a Harvard timeout, Maters drained the game-winning three with 1.3 seconds left. Penn called timeout and got a shot off but it was off the mark.
Harvard shot 41.2 percent from the field, while Penn hit 45.5 percent of its shots. The Crimson dominated the boards, outrebounding the Quakers, 32-24.
The Crimson hosts Princeton Saturday evening at 6 p.m. The Tigers clinched a share of the Ivy League title with 64-43 win over Dartmouth tonight.