Men's Basketball Tripped Up at Yale, 59-50

Steeves led Harvard in scoring for the third time this season (Gil Talbot).

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – The Harvard men's basketball team dropped a 59-50 decision at Yale Friday night despite 27 points from the duo of Patrick Steeves and Agunwa Okolie.

Steeves led the team with 16 points and two assists in 28 minutes off the bench, and scored five points during a key run in the second half as Harvard (11-16, 3-8 Ivy League) cut an 18-pont deficit to single-digits. Okolie added 11 points and four rebounds, and contributed four points during the run.

Yale (19-6, 10-1 Ivy League) outscored Harvard 34-18 in the paint and owned a 37-29 advantage on the glass en route to remaining one-half game in front of Princeton (19-5, 9-1 Ivy League) in the Ancient Eight standings with three games to play. Makai Mason scored 16 points and dished out six assists to pace the Bulldogs, with Justin Sears adding 12 points, nine rebounds and five helpers.

Harvard will be back in action tomorrow at Brown. Tip off is scheduled for 6 p.m. live on the Ivy League Digital Network.

Okolie scored Harvard's first five points as the Crimson took an early lead, 5-3, but Yale stormed back with a 12-0 stretch for a 15-5 margin. Five straight points from Steeves helped get Harvard back on track, 19-14, before a second run by the Bulldogs put the score at 28-14.

Steeves added two more baskets to finish the half with nine points, including a fadeaway jumper to beat the buzzer and make it a 36-22 game.

The teams combined for just six points through the first five-plus minutes of the second half as both defenses set the tone. Corbin Miller's 3-pointer helped to pull Harvard out of its drought, and Steeves and Okolie followed with finishes off turnovers to keep the margin at 45-31. A drive by Okolie and 3 from Steeves kept the run alive and cut the deficit to single-digits, 45-36.

Yale got its lead back to 53-38 on Brandon Sherrod's and-1, and at the under-four timeout the score stood at 57-40. Harvard outscored the Eli 10-0 in the final 1:57 but it was too little too late, as Yale took the victory, 59-50.

Game Notes: Patrick Steeves led Harvard in scoring for the third time with 16 points … Agunwa Okolie has scored in double-figures in eight of 11 Ivy League games … Harvard has made 200 3-pointers this season, the fourth-highest total in program history … Harvard has made at least five 3-pointers in 25 of 27 games … Harvard's 134 blocks are the sixth-most in program history … Harvard has held eight opponents to under 60 points this season.