Women's Basketball Hosts Rhode Island in Home Opener

Women's Basketball Hosts Rhode Island in Home Opener

The Crimson are an impressive 30-6 at Lavietes Pavillion since 2009-10 including a 10-2 mark at home last year (Gil Talbot).

The Storyline
The Harvard women's basketball team will open the home portion of its 2011-12 schedule Tuesday, Nov. 22 at 7:00 p.m. versus Rhode Island. Tuesday's game will mark the 14th meeting between the teams and the first since 2005. The Rams hold a slight 7-6 advantage in the all-time series but the Crimson has won each of the last two contests and four straight at Lavietes Pavilion against Rhode Island.

Fans can watch a live video stream of Tuesday's game on GoCrimson.com with play-by-play man Greg Kadetsky on the call by clicking here.

Last Time Out
Victoria Lippert scored 20 points and Brogan Berry added 19 as the Harvard women's basketball team fell 71-60 Friday night at Providence.

Lippert was 8-of-12 from the floor including a 3-of-5 performance from three-point range. Berry made 7-of-14 and was 4-of-5 at the line, dishing out five assists while playing all 40 minutes. Berry's 19 points moved her to 12th place on Harvard's career scoring list, where she now stands with 1,116. Christine Clark turned in 10 points as the Crimson (0-3) combined to shoot 47.9 percent on the night.

Click here to watch highlights from Friday's game.

Triple Threat
Returning All-Ivy selections Christine Clark, Brogan Berry and Victoria Lippert are each averaging over 10 ppg and are among the leading scorers in the conference. Clark ranks third in the Ivy League with 18.3 ppg while Berry's 15.0 ppg rank her seventh and Lippert's 13.0 ppg are good for ninth.

Home Cooking
Harvard boasts a 30-6 record at Lavietes Pavilion over the last three years and posted a 10-2 mark at home in 2010-11. The Crimson has won each of its last two home openers, including an 85-61 triumph over Hartford a year ago.

She's on Fire
Harvard currently leads the Ivy League in both field goal (42.5) and free-throw  (78.4) percentage, and ranks third in three-point percentage (28.8). The Crimson has led the league in free-throw percentage each of the last two seasons while finishing second in field-goal percentage over that same time. Harvard ranked second from beyond the arc in 2010-11 and was first in 2009-10.

Slow off the Starting Line
The Crimson are 0-3 to start the season for the first time since 2006-07 and only the seventh time in program history. Harvard has opened 0-4 four times previously, including in 2006-07 when the Crimson lost six straight before picking up its first win. That team rebounded to post a 15-13 overall record and a 13-1 mark in conference play, however, to win the program's 10th Ivy League championship and advance to the NCAA Tournament.

You Can Count on Clark
Christine Clark matched her career-high of 28 points in Harvard's season opener at Iowa, hitting 10-of-20 shots from the floor and going 7-of-11 at the line. She scored 17 the following day against Butler, including 15 in the second half, shooting an economical 5-of-7 from the floor and 7-of-8 at the line. Trailing by nine against the Bulldogs with 1:38 seconds remaining, Clark scored five straight points to spark Harvard's comeback as the Crimson pulled to within one.

Clark was named to the Ivy League Honor Roll, Hawkeye Classic All-Tournament Team and the CollegeSportsMadness.com Ivy League Player of the Week for her efforts.

Player to Watch
Senior co-captain Brogan Berry, who has posted 15.0 ppg and 4.7 apg season, was featured on Graham Hays' list of mid-major players to watch on ESPN.com.

"The 5-8 Ohio native averaged 4.6 assists per game as a junior and ranked ninth in the nation in assist-to-turnover ratio. She's not all pass, holding onto the ball often enough to lead the Crimson by averaging 13.6 points per game and shoot 39 percent from the 3-point line."

Now Starting for Harvard...
Junior Emma Golen made her first career start at Iowa while senior Brogan Berry made her 87th. Harvard has used the same starting lineup for each game this season, which includes Berry (89 career starts), Christine Clark (31), Victoria Lippert (49), Golen (3) and Miriam Rutzen (15).

Milestone Moments
Senior co-captain Brogan Berry became the 15th member of Harvard women's basketball's 1,000 point club last season. Berry is currently ranked 12th in program history with 1,116 points, needing 112 points to break into the school's top 10 and 264 points to enter the Ivy League's top 30.  

Berry also ranks fifth at Harvard with 411 career assists and is 19th in Ancient Eight history. This season she could join Emily Tay '09 (1,263 pts., 514 ast.) as one of only two student-athletes in program history to score 1,200 points and dish out 500 assists.

Her career free-throw percentage of 81.7 is good for ninth in the Ivy League record book.

Click here to visit the Media Center on GoCrimson.com to access Harvard's  most up-to-date career records.

Career Scoring (Harvard)
1. Allison Feaster '98    2,312
13. Brogan Berry '12    1,116

Career Assists (Harvard)
1. Jennifer Monti '02    558
5. Brogan Berry '12    411

Career Assists (Ivy)
1. Jennifer Monti '02, Harvard    558
19. Brogan Berry '12, Harvard    411

Career Free-Throw Percentage (Ivy)
1. Angela Soriaga '06, Dartmouth    89.9
9. Brogan Berry '12, Harvard    81.7

Mid-Major Top 25
Harvard was listed as receiving votes in the CollegeInsider.com Preseason Mid-Major Top 25, but dropped out of the most recent poll released Nov. 15. Four of the Crimson's opponents in 2011-12 are currently in the rankings, including Princeton (3), Butler (RV), Boston University (RV) and Hartford (RV).

CollegeInsider.com Mid-Major Top 25
Preseason    RV
Nov. 15    --

Welcome Back
The Crimson return three All-Ivy selections and a total of 10 student-athletes from last year's team which went 18-10 overall and finished second in the Ivy League with a 10-4 conference mark. Headlining that group is senior co-captain Brogan Berry, a three-time All-Ivy honoree and first team pick in 2011. Victoria Lippert has been named to the second team in each of the past two seasons and Christine Clark was an Ivy League All-Rookie pick a year ago. Each of the three finished among the top 10 in scoring in the conference in 2010-11.

Starting Fresh
Harvard has welcomed five new faces to the team for 2011-12, a recruiting class which was ranked 31st in the nation by ESPN. This group includes guards Ali Curtis and Kaitlyn Dinkins, and forwards Temi Fagbenle, Christine Mansour and Erin McDonnell.

"In my 30 years in the league I have had and seen some extraordinary classes, and this one shoots to the top of the list," said Head Coach Kathy Delaney-Smith. "With the addition of the Class of 2015, we are extremely excited to continue striving for higher levels of success while building on the championship tradition we have established here at Harvard."

On the Bench
Head Coach Kathy Delaney-Smith returns for her 30th season as the head coach of the Harvard women's basketball program. Delaney-Smith's 456 career victories make her the winningest women's basketball coach in Ivy League history and she ranks second only to Princeton's legendary coach Pete Carril (514) for wins by an Ancient Eight coach. Under her guidance the Crimson has won 11 Ivy League titles, has made six trips to the NCAA Tournament and has twice appeared in the WNIT.

Kelly Finley is in her fourth season as an assistant coach under Delaney-Smith and will be joined on sidelines by first year assistants Lindsay Hallion '08 and Juanise Cornell. Kristan Strout returns for a fifth season as the program's director of basketball operations.

Preseason Poll
With three returning All-Ivy selections and coming off an 18-10 season, the Harvard women's basketball team was picked second in the 2011-12 Ivy League Preseason Poll. The Crimson, which has finished second in the conference in each of the past three seasons, received 117 points and garnered three of the poll's first-place votes. Two-time defending Ivy League Champion Princeton was tabbed first, receiving 133 points and 14 first-place votes, while Yale (103) and Penn (68) rounded out the top four. Brown (66), Columbia (52), Dartmouth (52) and Cornell (21) ranked fifth through eighth, respectively.

2011-12 Ivy League Preseason Poll
1. Princeton (14) 133
2. Harvard (3) 117
3. Yale 103
4. Penn 68
5. Brown 66
6. Columbia 52
    Dartmouth 52
8. Cornell 21

Captaining the Ship
Seniors Brogan Berry and Lindsay Louie were chosen by their teammates as captains for the 2011-12 season. Berry is a three-year starter and two-time team MVP, while Louie earned the Harvard Pride Award following the 2009-10 season.

A League of Their Own
Four Crimson were named to the All-Ivy teams in 2010-11, the most of any school in the conference. Brogan Berry was a unanimous first team selection while Victoria Lippert and Emma Markley '11 were named to the second team. Christine Clark was unanimously voted to the All-Rookie squad.

Light Up the Scoreboard
Harvard's 71.4 ppg led the Ivy League in 2010-11 and ranked 39th in the NCAA. The Crimson returned 64 percent of its scoring from a year ago, including three of the conference's top 10 scorers. Brogran Berry ranked second in the league with 13.9 ppg while Victoria Lippert was fourth with 13.5 ppg. Christine Clark was the eighth leading scorer in the Ivy League at 12.1 ppg.

Catch the Crimson in 2011-12
Harvard fans can watch each of the team's 12 home games in 2011-12 live online through GoCrimson.com. A women's basketball pass costs just $59.95 and this year also includes audio broadcasts for the team's games at Providence, New Hampshire and Brown. Click here to sign up today.

Inside Ivy League Basketball
"Inside Ivy League Basketball," an online radio show dedicated to talking basketball in the Ancient Eight, launched Thursday, Nov. 10 on BlogTalkRadio.com. "Inside Ivy League Basketball" takes an in-depth look at all the news and notes surrounding Ivy men's and women's basketball on and off the courts. Click here to listen now.