Photo of Christine Matera courtesy of Gil Talbot.
PHILADELPHIA, Pa. – The Harvard
women’s basketball team picked up its first Ivy road win with
a 66-40 victory over Penn Saturday night at The Palestra. The
Crimson (12-7, 3-2 Ivy) had three players in double figures, while
all nine players scored a basket in the game.
Junior co-captain Christine Matera scored 19 points for the second night in a row, equaling her career high for the third time this season. The Moorestown, N.J., native was 7-for-13 from the field, 5-for-8 from beyond the arc with two assists, a rebound and a block. Sophomore Brogan Berry added 12 points, seven assists and three steals in the win. Freshman Victoria Lippert had 10 points and four rebounds. Junior Jackie Alemany led the Crimson with nine rebounds.
Harvard scored the first basket of the game and after a lay-up from Penn’s Caroline Nicholson tied it at 2-2, the Crimson scored the next 11 points to take a 13-2 lead with 13:51 remaining in the first half. Those baskets were part of 19 straight points for the visiting team during an 8:27 span. Harvard’s defense held the Quakers scoreless for more than nine minutes and caused three straight turnovers and five during that time. Nicholson connected on 1-of-2 free throw attempts to give the home team its third point of the game with 9:19 remaining in the first. Jerin Smith put in the Quakers first field goal in over 11 minutes with 8:38 on the clock to make it 24-5.
The Quakers found their grove late in the first half using a 14-2 run to cut the lead to nine points (26-17) with two minutes left in the stanza. Markley scored two points in the paint and Matera drained a three on a fast break to snap the Crimson scoring draught to put Harvard up 31-17 at the half.
Harvard handed out eight assists, blocked three shots and stole the ball five times during the first 20 minutes of play. The Crimson shot 39.4 percent from the field during that span and held the Quakers scoreless from beyond the arc.
Berry started the scoring off in the second session as the Crimson cruised out to a 44-22 advantage after six minutes of action. Matera nailed two treys and Elle Hagedorn drained another to give the visiting team its largest lead of the night at 21 with 14:35 left to play. The Crimson continued to extend its lead to as many as 27 and didn’t let the Quakers come closer than 22 in the second stanza.
Harvard shot 44.3 percent in the game after connecting on 50 percent of its shots in the second 20 minutes of play. The Crimson was 50 percent from the three-point line as well. Penn managed just 27.5 percent from the field and managed just 40 points, the least allowed by the Crimson this season. The Quakers won the battle on the glass, outrebounding the Crimson, 39-36.
The Crimson returns to Lavietes Pavilion next weekend for home games against Yale and Brown. Harvard will host its WBCA Pink Zone Event Saturday night to support breast cancer awareness.