CAMBRIDGE, Mass. - The Harvard women's basketball team (0-1) fell to Dayton (1-0), 72-66, in the team's opening game at the Maine Tip-Off Tournament on Friday night.
Senior Taylor Rooks kicked it off for the Crimson, netting a three-pointer to start the night. Halfway through the first, the Crimson led the Flyers, 10-5. With three minutes left in the first, junior Sydney Skinner made a pass through traffic to find sophomore Jeannie Boehm underneath the net, where she was able to complete the layup, giving the Crimson a 12-7 lead. Dayton closed the opening stanza with a run though and took an 18-12 lead into the first break.
During the second quarter, Boehm made a key play when she grabbed the offensive rebound and completed the putback for two, cutting Dayton's lead to six. It was a full-court contest as both teams fought hard for posession of the ball and at the end of the first half, Harvard trailed the Flyers, 35-27. Rooks led the Crimson with nine points in the first half, followed by sophomore Katie Benzan with seven.
In the second half, Dayton struck first, but the Crimson quickly followed up with a layup from junior Madeline Raster. Benzan earned the assist. Rooks helped cut the deficit to eight when she followed up with a bucket of her own, Harvard trailing 39-31, with 8:14 left in the third. The momentum kept rolling as Benzan netted a 3-pointer, inching the score closer as Dayton held the 39-36 lead. Harvard came within two with less than four minutes left in the third, as the Flyers held a 41-39 lead.
As the clock counted down at the beginning of the fourth quarter, Harvard looked to close in on Dayton's 55-48 lead. With less than two minutes left in the game Harvard trailed Dayton, 67-58, as Raster stepped back and shot to notch three more points for the Crimson. The Crimson trailed the Flyers, 67-61. However, the comeback was short-lived, as Harvard fell to Dayton, 72-66.
- Katie Benzan led the Crimson with 16 points, followed by Taylor Rooks with 13.
- Four different players recorded steals: Nani Redford with three, Taylor Rooks with 2, while Katie Benzan and Madeline Raster each had one.
- Harvard moves to 0-2 all-time against the Flyers.
Harvard will face Maine tomorrow at 4 p.m. The game will air on ESPN3.