After a month-long road swing, Harvard returns to the friendly confines of Lavietes Pavilion Saturday, Dec. 21 to take on Hofstra Saturday, Dec. 21 at 1 p.m. The contest will serve as a doubleheader with the men's team, as Harvard men will take on Vermont at 4 p.m. The Crimson won't be home for long, heading back out for four-straight contests, including the Fordham Holiday Classic following the Christmas holiday.
Last Time Out
Behind 22 points and 11 rebounds from junior forward Temi Fagbenle, Harvard moved to 7-3 and snapped a two-game skid by besting Sacred Heart, 74-63, in the second game of the ASU Classic Dec. 8. Fagbenle led a charge of four players in double-figures and two with 10-plus rebounds. Senior guard Jasmine Evans registered her first career double-double with 10 points and a career-high 13 rebounds. Junior forward Erin McDonnell added 17 points on 7-of-8 shooting, including a 3-for-3 performance from behind the arc. Classmate Ali Curtis rounded out the quartet with 14 points.
What a Start
For the second-straight year, the Crimson is off to a 7-3 start, matching the second-best start through 10 games in program history. The 6-1 start signaled the best for the Crimson since 1997-98. The Crimson has gone 8-2 three times, most recently in 1997-98 en route to a 23-5 overall record and an Ivy League title.
The game will be part of a doubleheader, as the Crimson men's team will face Vermont at 4 p.m. This will mark the third-straight year Harvard has played a men's and women's doubleheader. Last year, the women defeated BYU (71-65) and the men downed Manhattan (79-45). Prior to 2011-12 the last time Harvard played a men's and women's doubleheader was January 5, 2008 when the women lost to Dartmouth, 52-47, before the men took down the Big Green, 82-56.
Next Stop: 600
The Harvard women's basketball program is closing in on 600 wins, holding an all-time record of 593-435 in its 40th season. Head coach Kathy Delaney-Smith owns 502 of those victories.
Head coach Kathy Delaney-Smith, in her 32nd season at the helm of the Crimson, earned her 500th win at Colgate Nov. 23, joining a group of 28 active coaches in Division I with at least 500 wins. She is also one of six active Division I head coaches to spend 31-plus years at one institution.
The winningest coach in Ivy League women's basketball history with 502 career victories, she ranks second only to Princeton's legendary coach Pete Carril (514) for wins by an Ancient Eight coach on either the men's or women's side. Delaney-Smith is also closing in on 300 career wins in the conference with 295 victories against the Ivy League.
Shooting up the scoring list, Christine Clark sits at No. 8 in program history with 1,420 points over her three-plus year career. She needs 38 points to tie Brogan Berry '12, who sits at seventh all-time with 1,458 points. Clark became the 18th member of Harvard's 1,000 point club Jan. 2, 2012, as she scored 19 points against UMass. Clark reached the milestone in just her 71st career game, making her the fastest Crimson to reach 1,000 points since Reka Cserny '05 did so in her 60th career appearance.
Including this year, Harvard has had at least one 1,000 point scorer on the floor in five of the last six seasons. Additionally, each of Harvard's 18 1,000 point scorers has been coached by head coach Kathy Delaney-Smith.
Temi Fagbenle has already recorded four double-doubles through 10 games this season (last vs. Sacred Heart) after totaling seven a year ago. The seven signaled the most for the Crimson since Emma Markley '11 turned in seven as a junior in 2009-10. Fagbenle's first double-double came opening weekend at North Dakota, making her the first Crimson rookie to record a double-double in her first weekend of action since Hannah Peljto '04 went for 21 points and 10 rebounds in the season opener against Saint Peter's on Nov. 17, 2000.
Ancient Eight Accolades
Two Crimson student-athletes have earned three Ivy League Player of the Week accolades thus far this season.
Christine Clark earned the honor after pacing the Crimson with 21.0 points per game for the week ending Nov. 18. Temi Fagbenle was tabbed player of the week for Nov. 25 and Dec. 8 after averaging a double-double in both weeks.
Clark now owns eight conference weekly honors for her career, which stands good for seventh in Ancient Eight history. After tying for the most Ivy Rookie of the Week honors a season ago, Fagbenle has been selected for best player over a seven-day stretch four times.
Just Keep Winning
Harvard owns a home-win streak of 17 games, marking the longest run since 1996-98, when the Crimson ripped off 21-straight wins at Lavietes. Harvard posted a perfect 11-0 record at home in 2012-13 and has not lost in Cambridge since Feb. 11, 2012. Before 2012-13, the last time Harvard went unbeaten at home was in 1997-98 when the team went 13-0 en route to a 23-5 overall mark.
Better and Better
Through 10 games this season, nine Crimson student-athletes have matched or bested their career highs in points and/or rebounds. The athletes include: Christine Clark (28 points), Erin McDonnell (19 points, 9 rebounds), Ali Curtis (16 points, 5 rebounds), AnnMarie Healy (13 points), Jasmine Evans (13 rebounds), Melissa Mullins (12 rebounds), Shilpa Tummala (14 points), Kit Metoyer (6 points) and Taylor Finley (six points).
You're in Good Hands
Junior captain Kaitlyn Dinkins has been nominated for the 2014 Allstate WBCA and NABC Good Works Teams®. The award recognizes a select group of college basketball student-athletes who have made significant contributions to the greater good of their communities through volunteerism and civic service.
Dinkins has become very involved with Athletes in Action at Harvard, co-leading the group this year. Last year, the Atlanta, Ga., product was a member of the Servant team, an organization that plans events and leads a weekly, freshmen bible study.
The Crimson was 6-1 in the month of November, setting a new program record for wins before December. Last season, Harvard won five of seven games, which had been a program best.
You Can Count on Clark
Christine Clark has started 96 of 98 games for the Crimson over the last three-plus years and has scored in double-digits 80 times. This includes a streak of 21 consecutive 10-plus point performances (March 5, 2011-Feb. 4, 2012) and 18 games in which she has scored at least 20 (last at Northeastern). Clark has posted 20-plus points in six games in 2013-14.
Head of the Class
The Crimson sits atop many Ivy League categories, both as a team and individually. As a unit, Harvard holds the No. 1 spot in scoring offense (77.1), free throw percentage (.748), rebounding offense (43.0), offensive rebound percentage (.387) and winning percentage (.700). Individually, three Crimson athletes rank first in five categories: Christine Clark (scoring, 19.4), Temi Fagbenle (rebounding, 9.4, and defensive rebounds, 7.5) and Erin McDonnell (field goal percentage, .587, and three point field goal percentage, .650).
After averaging a combined 1.63 points per game in 4.6 minutes a game, the sophomore class seems to have found its stride in 2013-14. AnnMarie Healy (13 points), Kit Metoyer (6) and Shilpa Tummala (14) have all matched or bested their career highs in points and are contributing 12.4 points per game as a class.
The Crimson has won seven of its 10 non-conference matches this season. Harvard closed out the non-conference portion of its schedule with a 9-5 record a year ago, marking the program's third best non-conference record under head coach Kathy Delaney-Smith and the fifth best non-conference record all-time. Harvard has earned 11 out-of-league victories twice under Delaney-Smith, turning in an 11-3 record in 1997-98 and going 11-4 in 1985-86. The 1976-77 squad owns the program record for non-conference wins at 13-4, while the 1978-79 Crimson went 12-9 away from the Ivy League.
Harvard has posted at least eight non-conference wins in five-straight seasons.
Harvard sits at 2-2 in true road games and 4-3 overall when playing outside Lavietes Pavilion. The Crimson will play 17 games away from Cambridge in 2013-14. Last year, Harvard was 10-7 in true road games. It marked the most road victories for the Crimson since 2008-09 and was the second-straight year the team posted a winning record away from home.
• Christine Clark has scored 20-plus points in six of the last seven games she has played.
• Harvard has won its last 17 contests at Lavietes Pavilion. The Crimson's last loss at home was to Princeton on Feb. 11, 2012.
• The Crimson is off to a 7-3 start for the second-straight season.
• Kathy Delaney-Smith has used the same starters – Ali Curtis, Christine Clark, Temi Fagbenle, Melissa Mullins and Erin McDonnell – in eight games this season.
• Harvard's 21 wins last season were the most since winning 22 in 2001-02 and 2002-03.
• Harvard won 10 games on the road last season, its most since winning 10 in 2008-09.
• The Crimson sits at 5-2 when leading at the half.
• Harvard has not lost (4-0) when allowing 69 points or fewer.
• When scoring 80-plus points, the Crimson is 4-0 this season.
Owning the Boards
Senior Melissa Mullins has paced the Crimson in rebounding in six of 10 games this season, ranking second in the Ivy League with 8.2 boards per game. The swing player has grabbed 10-plus boards three times. Harvard has had a player pull down 10-plus boards in six games and two players tally double-digit rebounds in three contests.
Cleaning the Glass
As a team, the Crimson has outrebounded its opponent six times this year. Harvard owns a 5-1 mark when controlling the glass.
Boards on Boards
Temi Fagbenle, averaging a conference-best 9.4 boards a game, has pulled down 10-plus rebounds in five games this season. Fagbenle has paced the Crimson in boards in four of the last six games and since the FIU game (Nov. 19), the junior is pulling down 11.0 rebounds per game.
Harvard is 19-21 all-time in season openers and 16-16 under head coach Kathy Delaney-Smith. The Crimson has lost three straight season openers, including a 99-75 defeat at DePaul this year.
In 39 seasons of Ivy League play, Harvard is 22-17 in conference openers and 19-12 under head coach Kathy Delaney-Smith.
20 Times 10
At 21-9, the Crimson recorded the 10th 20-win season in program history a year ago. All 10 of the 20-win seasons have come under the guidance of Kathy Delaney-Smith with the last occurring in 2009-10.
Home Court Advantage
The Harvard men's and women's basketball teams have combined for a 96-11 record at home in Lavietes Pavilion since 2009-10 while going 49-7 against the Ivy League. The Crimson men are 52-4 (.926) overall, 25-3 (.892) against the Ancient Eight, with the women going 44-7 (.863) overall, 24-4 (.857) in conference. The men's team's run of dominance includes a program record 28-game home win streak that lasted more than two calendar years between Feb. 19, 2010 and Feb. 24, 2012. The women have currently won 17-straight.
Dating back to the start of 2011-12, the Crimson is 28-2 when holding opponents to less than 60 points and 41-8 when allowing fewer than 70 points.
The Crimson overcame a 13-point deficit to defeat Florida International Nov 19, its largest comeback since Dec. 6, 2009 (vs. BU). Harvard won four games a season ago when trailing at the half. The Crimson most recently overcame a 32-23 halftime deficit to earn a 64-52 victory over FIU Nov. 19.
The Crimson owned a 2-1 record in overtime games last season. Harvard did not play a single overtime game in 2011-12 and had not played multiple overtime games in the same season since 2009-10. The Crimson is 12-6 in overtime under head coach Kathy Delaney-Smith and is 13-6 all-time in overtime.
It's Up, and It's Good
Harvard has made at least one three-point field goal in 138 consecutive games dating back to 2008-09, the second-longest streak in program history. The record for consecutive games with at least one three-pointer stands at 172, a streak which began during the 1989-90 season and concluded in 1996-97.