ITHACA, N.Y. – Behind a career-high 26 points from senior Kit Metoyer, Harvard women's basketball (7-9, 2-1) pushed past Cornell, 65-56, in overtime Friday evening at Newman Arena. The Houston, Texas product connected on a personal-best six triples, shooting 9-of-15 from the floor and adding six assists.
Senior AnnMarie Healy added 15 points and six boards. Classmate Shilpa Tummala added her third double-double of the season with 10 points and 10 rebounds, including six points in the extra stanza. Harvard outpaced Cornell over the final five minutes, 13-4.
Cornell (10-7, 2-1) was led by Nia Marshall and Megan LeDuc with 17 points apiece.
Harvard jumped out to an early 5-0 lead, but Cornell answered with seven of the next nine points to knot the game at 7-7 with four minutes gone. The Big Red posted a 10-2 run, but Destiny Nunley scored just before the quarter to pull the Crimson within four, 17-13, with 10 minutes off the clock.
Nunley started the scoring in the second stanza and the Crimson pulled within one, 19-18, on a Metoyer triple from the wing at the 7:01 mark. Both teams could not find the basket for the next four minutes, but Harvard regained its touch to score the final 12 points of the period and take a 30-21 advantage into the locker room. Metoyer – who finished with 11 points for the half – started the spurt with a trey to pull Harvard even, 21-21. Sydney Skinner capped the run with two free throws after a second-chance opportunity.
Cornell's Marshall posted back-to-back buckets out of the break, but Healy answered with two-straight baskets of her own and Metoyer dropped in consecutive triples to push the Crimson lead to 13, 40-27, at the 3:48 mark of the third. With 10 minutes to play, Harvard maintained an 11-point advantage, 42-31.
The Big Red opened the fourth stanza on a 10-0 run over four minutes to pull within one, 42-41. Metoyer spouted five points to give the Crimson breathing room, 47-41. Within one again with 43 seconds left in regulation, Tummala nailed two free throws to give Harvard a three-point lead. LeDuc heaved a shot from 25-feet out as the buzzer sounded to send the game into overtime.
Cornell hit two free throws to begin the overtime period, but it was all Harvard after that. Metoyer laid in a bucket in the lane, made two free throws and assisted on a Healy lay-up to give the Crimson a four-point lead with 1:30 gone. Tummala made four-straight free throws and Harvard never looked back, going on to win, 65-56.
Harvard continues its New York road swing with Columbia tomorrow at 6 p.m. The game can be seen live on the Ivy League Digital Network.
Game Notes: For the ninth time this year, Kit Metoyer posted double-figures with 26 points. The senior broke her career high and posted 20-plus points for the first time in her career. The 26 points was the most for a Crimson player since Temi Fagbenle (31) at Columbia on March 1, 2014. AnnMarie Healy posted double-figures for the 16th time this season and the 39th of her career with 15 points. Harvard went with the starting lineup of Healy, Redford, Tummala, Metoyer and Raster for the 13th-straight game. The Crimson moves to 6-7 with that starting five. Harvard moves to 63-11 all-time against Cornell and has won 16-straight in the series. This marked the first overtime game for Harvard since Nov. 25, 2014 against Holy Cross. It marked the first game with extra time against an Ivy League opponent since Feb. 5, 2011 against Penn. Shilpa Tummala added 10 points for her 14th double-digit outing this year. Tummala pulled down 10 boards for her third double-double of the season.