Harvard's comeback fell just short as Butler survived the Crimson for a 69-68 win in the consolation game of the Hawkeye Challenge.
IOWA CITY, Iowa – Christine Clark sparked a furious comeback from a nine-point deficit with 1:36 to play, but the Harvard women's basketball team fell one point shy as Butler escaped with a 69-68 win in the consolation game of the KCRG-TV 9 Hawkeye Challenge.
Clark scored five of her 17 points in the final moments of the game, and finished the afternoon shooting 5-of-7 from the floor and 7-of-8 from the line. Brogan Berry led all scorers with 18 points while Victoria Lippert chipped in 14.
Butler (1-1) limited the Crimson (0-2) to 34.9 percent shooting while hitting 44.6 percent of its attempts at the offensive end. Harvard went an impressive 19-of-21 at the line but the Bulldog's 30-24 advantage in points in the paint proved to be the difference in the game. Terra Burns scored 17 points to lead Butler while Haley Howard tallied 15.
Emma Golen scored five straight points for the Crimson to open the game as Harvard built an early 9-6 lead. Butler responded with a 5-0 run to take a 13-12 advantage, but a pair of Clark free throws and a Lippert jumper put Harvard back in front, 16-13.
The teams continued to trade the lead with a Lippert three regaining a 19-18 edge for Harvard. A pair of Bulldog layups helped put Butler on top 29-24 before a pair of Devin Brierly free throws extended the margin to 34-26. Lindsay Louie put an end to Butler's run at the free-throw line and Berry's three with 2:36 remaining in the half made it a three-point game, 34-31. The Bulldogs hit a pair of shots with under 1:00 to play for a 42-33 lead, but another Berry three as time expired sent the Crimson into the locker room trailing by six, 42-36.
Berry and Lippert accounted for 21 of Harvard's 36 first-half points, with Berry's 11 leading the way. Butler shot 52.0 percent from the field through the first 20 minutes and held a 21-16 advantage on the glass. Harvard, meanwhile, connected on just 31.3 percent of its attempts, including 5-of-15 from three.
The Crimson came out of the break with renewed energy and quickly tied the score at 42 with Clark at the free-throw line. Butler maintained its composure, however, and scored 12 straight points to go in front 54-42. Berry put an end to Harvard's drought with a layup through traffic, and after a pair of Lippert free throws and a Miriam Rutzen layup the deficit stood at just five, 55-50.
Baskets by Berry and Elise Gordon pulled the Crimson within one, 55-54, with 9:24 remaining in the game. A 9-0 Butler run pushed the margin to 11, 67-56, and with 2:30 to play Harvard trailed by nine, 69-60.
The comeback began as Clark scored five straight points to bring the Crimson within four. Berry converted a three-point play with 24.9 seconds remaining, making it a one-point game, 69-68. Jenna Cobb missed the front end of a 1-and-1 for Butler with 12 seconds on the clock, and Rutzen came down with the rebound to set up the final play. Harvard's attempt out of the timeout was unsuccessful, however, as Cobb forced a turnover to seal the 69-68 victory.
Harvard returns to the court at 7 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 18 at Providence.
Game Notes: Sophomore Christine Clark scored 15 of her 17 points in the second half, shooting 5-of-6 from both the floor and line ... Junior Emma Golen corralled a career-high eight rebounds ... The Crimson are 2-3 in one-point games dating back to 2009-10.