Second Half Rally Pushes Women’s Basketball Past Brown, 76-69

Photo courtesy of Gil Talbot
Photo courtesy of Gil Talbot
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PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Senior forward Temi Fagbenle recorded her 13th double-double of the season with 16 points and 18 rebounds to lead Harvard women's basketball past Brown, 76-69, Saturday evening at Pizzitola Sports Center.

Junior Shilpa Tummala tied her personal best and posted her fourth double-figure game of the season with 15 points. Classmate AnnMarie Healy added 14 points and a personal-best five assists for Harvard (14-14, 7-7).

Brown (10-18, 4-10) was paced by 15 points from Janie White. Ellise Sharpe added 12 points.  

Trailing by five at the 5:46 mark, 23-18, sophomore Destiny Nunley connected on an old-fashioned three-point play off an out-of-bounds play to pull the Crimson within two, 23-21. Sophie Bikofsky answered immediately with a triple, but senior captain Erin McDonnell buried a jumper from the elbow on the ensuing possession. The Crimson pulled within one, 27-26, after a rainbow three by sophomore Grace Keane, but the Bears scored seven of the final nine points to take a five-point advantage into the locker room.

The two teams traded triples to open the second half, and Healy pulled the Crimson within three with a fast-break lay-in, but the Bears answered with six-straight points to push their lead to nine, 43-34, with 17:17 left to play.

Healy registered a five-point swing of her own and the Crimson scored nine of the next 11 points to pull within two, 45-43. Fagbenle gave Harvard its first lead since 13:30 of the first with a second-chance lay-up at the 9:55 mark. Tummala corralled a dime from Kit Metoyer on the break to give the Crimson a three point advantage, 52-49.

Harvard extended its lead to 12 with a 9-0 rally that ended at the 3:05 mark. McDonnell started the spurt with a triple in front of the Crimson bench and Healy capped it with a lay-up on the break.

Brown made a slight push at the end, scoring five-straight, but the Crimson connected on free throws down the stretch to secure the win.

Game Notes: For the 22nd time this season and 62nd time in her career, Temi Fagbenle posted double-figures with 16 points, adding 18 rebounds. It marked her 13th double-double of the season, the most since Hana Peljto in 2003-04 (15). Fagbenle posted 10-plus boards in 15 games this season. AnnMarie Healy posted her 19th game with double-figures this season (14). For the fourth time this season, Shilpa Tummala registered double-digits with 15 points. The Crimson has made a consecutive three-pointer in a program-record 185 games. Nine of 10 Crimson players who saw action scored. Fagbenle owns 1,152 career points to sit No. 15 all-time at Harvard. Fagbenle finishes her career with 792 rebounds, good for sixth all-time at Harvard. It marked the first time since Northeastern (12/20) that Fagbenle grabbed 15-plus rebounds.

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