Five In Double Figures Lead Men’s Basketball Over Howard, 84-71

Photo by Rodney Pierce
Photo by Rodney Pierce
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WASHINGTON, D.C. – Closing its non-conference action on Martin Luther King Jr. Day in the nation's capital, Harvard men's basketball rolled past Howard, 84-71, at Burr Gymnasium. The Crimson improved to 7-7 with the win, while Howard fell to 8-12.

Junior Justin Bassey led five in double figures with 18 points, while also pitching in seven rebounds and three assists. Classmates Bryce Aiken and Chris Lewis totaled 16 points apiece, while Christian Juzang and Robert Baker finished with 11. Baker tallied his second-career double-double, ending the afternoon with 13 rebounds.

Aiken, Bassey and Baker each hit triples to open the game, helping the Crimson to an early 9-2 advantage. Harvard led from start to finish in the contest, and opened up a game-high 19 point advantage near the end of the first half, 43-24, after a deep triple from senior Corey Johnson. Harvard led at the break by 14, 45-31, with its highest-scoring first half of the season.

The Crimson continued its strong play in the second half, weathering the Bison's attempts at a comeback. Harvard kicked off the frame with three consecutive dunks, including a two-handed alley-oop from Aiken to Baker. Composed in finishing the game, Harvard went a perfect 15-for-15 from the foul line in the second half.

Harvard Highlights

  • Bassey led the Crimson with 18 points, and matched a career-high with four 3-pointers.
  • Aiken, in his season debut, tallied 16 points with a team-high five assists.
  • Harvard went 22-for-24 at the line as a team, including a perfect 15-for-15 mark in the second half.
  • Baker added his second-career double-double with 11 points and 13 rebounds, the latter of which is a career-best. He also had a career-high four assists.

Game Notes

  • Harvard remains unbeaten in program history against Howard at 4-0.
  • Harvard tallied 20 assists as a team, which is one shy of the team's career high (21 vs. UMass, Nov. 13)
  • The Crimson scored a season-high 45 first half points, and is 7-1 this season when leading at the break.
  • In addition to playing on MLK Day, Harvard toured the MLK memorial in Washington D.C. on Sunday.

What's Next?
The Crimson resumes Ivy League action against Dartmouth on Saturday, Jan. 26 at 2 p.m. Kicking off a five-game homestand, the contest will be broadcast on NESN and ESPN+.