Women’s Basketball Drops 63-52 Decision at Rutgers in WNIT Second Round

Photo courtesy of Elan Kawesch
Photo courtesy of Elan Kawesch

PISCATAWAY, N.J. - Harvard women's basketball fell at Rutgers, 63-52, Monday night in the second round of the WNIT despite 15 points and six rebounds from senior guard Jasmine Evans.

The Crimson, which wraps the season at 22-8 for the most wins since 2002-03, shot 33.9 percent (19-of-56) from the field and committed 20 turnovers.

Rutgers (24-9) advances to host Seton Hall in the round of 16 Thursday. The Scarlet Knights were paced by Kahleah Copper with 19 points and 12 rebounds, as Betnijah Laney added 17 points. RU made 15-of-24 free throws, while Harvard went to the line just nine times, connecting seven times.

Senior captain Christine Clark capped her outstanding career with 11 points, her 98th double-figure outing. Sophomore guard Kit Metoyer added nine points. 

The Scarlet Knights jumped out to a 10-2 lead after six minutes of play before Metoyer buried a three from the wing to pull the Crimson within five. Four points from Rutgers moved the score to 14-5 before Harvard stopped the Scarlet Knights and ripped off 10-straight points to take its first lead of the game, 15-14. Metoyer dropped in a long triple to end the run, as the Crimson held RU to without a basket over the six-plus minute span.

Rutgers regained the lead with a 7-2 spurt, but the Crimson held on, pulling within one twice. Harvard headed into the locker room trailing, 29-23. For the half, the Crimson shot just 25 percent (8-of-32) with nine turnovers.

Clark started the half with an old-fashioned three-point play, spurring Harvard on a 9-2 run after the break. Evans ended the run with a strong drive to the hoop, giving the Crimson a 32-31 advantage with 17:17 to play.

RU went on the attack offensively, posting 14 of the next 16 points to take its largest to that point, 45-34, with 10 minutes to play. The Crimson fought back, as Evans connected on a three, Fagbenle ducked in for a lay-in and Melissa Mullins added a free throw to pull Harvard within six, 46-40.

Trading baskets over the next four minutes, Rutgers used a four-point burst and connected on six of its final seven free throws to seal the game.

Game Notes: With 11 points, Christine Clark finishes her career No. 4 all-time at Harvard with 1,711 points. Clark scored in double-figures for the 98th time in her career, 25th time this season and 18th-straight. Jasmine Evans registered her 15th game in double-figures with a team-high 15 points, adding six rebounds. Harvard wraps the season with the most wins since 2002-03. Temi Fagbenle paced the Crimson in rebounding for the 16th time this season with eight boards. Harvard moves to 0-4 when scoring 55 points or less.