Christine Clark led Harvard past Northeastern with a career-best 28 points.
BOSTON, Mass. – Senior captain Christine Clark matched her career high with 28 points, as Harvard women's basketball (6-1) held on to defeat Northeastern, 81-74, Tuesday night at the Cabot Center. Junior Temi Fagbenle recorded her ninth career double-double with 12 points and 12 rebounds to lead the Crimson past the Huskies (4-2).
Junior guard Ali Curtis registered a career game with 16 points – including 11 in the first half – and four triples. NU was paced by Kazzidy Stewart with 25 points on 10-of-20 shooting and five three pointers. A'Lece Mark added 19 points for the Huskies, while Jewel Tunstull posted a double-double with 16 points and 10 boards.
Harvard shot 49.2 percent from the floor, while holding Northeastern to just 36.2 percent. The Crimson was nearly undone by 24 turnovers.
The two squads traded baskets early before a 12-0 run put the Crimson ahead, 17-6, at the 15:21 mark. Harvard shot a blazing 7-of-9 from the field over the first five minutes, including hitting 3-of-4 from behind the arc. The spurt started with a Curtis three from the wing and ended with an Erin McDonnell trey from the right corner.
Two quick scores pulled the Huskies within seven, 17-10, but Harvard ripped off 12 of the next 14 points to hold a commanding 29-12 advantage. Six different Crimson athletes contributed over the run. A plethora of free throws pulled the Huskies as close as 12, as Harvard took a 50-37 lead into halftime.
The Huskies would not back down, scoring eight of the first 10 points after the break to pull within six, 51-45. The Crimson shot 0-of-4 over the span, but pushed its lead back to 10 at the 13:12 mark after a turnaround jumper by Fagbenle.
Harvard expanded its lead to 18 with 5:29 to play, but Northeastern refused to give in, closing the gap to five with 35 seconds to play. Stewart hit a three from the wing to pull the Huskies within two possessions before Clark hit two clutch free throws and came up with a deflection on the ensuing defensive possession to lock up the win for the Crimson.
The Crimson will enjoy the Thanksgiving holiday before heading to New York to take on St. John's Sunday, Dec. 1. Game time is scheduled for 2 p.m. and will be streamed live through WatchESPN.com.
Game Notes: Ali Curtis broke her career high with 16 points. The Crimson has scored 75-plus points in six games this season and 80-plus in three. The 50 first-half points marked the most in a stanza since Feb. 11, 2011 (52, at Yale). It signaled the first over the first 20 minutes of a game since Jan. 3, 2005 against Stony Brook (55). With 28 points, Christine Clark holds the No. 8 all-time on the Harvard scoring list with 1,408 career points. She matched her career high and set a season best. Clark has scored 20-plus in 19 contests and in six-straight games. The senior scored in double-figures for the 79th time in her career and sixth time this season. Temi Fagbenle recorded her ninth career double-double and second of the season. She scored double-figures with 12 points for the 24th time in her career. Fagbenle paced the Crimson in rebounding for the third-straight game with 12 boards. Harvard went with the starting lineup of Curtis, Clark, Mullins, Fagbenle and McDonnell for the seventh-straight game.