NEW YORK CITY – Senior AnnMarie Healy posted a career high with 27 points as the Harvard women's basketball team (8-9, 3-1) held on to defeat Columbia, 69-66, Saturday evening at Levien Gymnasium. Healy shot 13-of-14 (.929) from the field, the third-best percentage in Harvard history (minimum eight shots).
Freshman Madeline Raster added 10 points, seven rebounds, and critical defense down the stretch to push the Crimson to 3-1 in League play. Senior Kit Metoyer chipped in 11 points, six rebounds and five assists. Kirby Porter chipped in eight points in 16 minutes. The Crimson shot 46 percent from the field.
Columbia (11-8, 0-4) was paced by Camille Zimmerman with 22 points. Josie Little and Tori Oliver added eight points apiece.
Harvard showed no signs of fatigue early, ripping off eight unanswered points over the first minute of play and forcing a Columbia timeout. A three by Emily Surloff seemed to quiet the run, but Healy answered with back-to-back buckets to put Harvard ahead 12-3 at the 6:25 mark. Columbia scored the final five points of the stanza to pull within six, 18-12.
The Lions' run was not over, as Columbia scored 10 of the first 14 points to even the tally, 22-22. Tied at 27-27 with 4:14 to play, Porter posted back-to-back lay-ups to give the Crimson a four-point cushion. Healy connected on two-straight baskets of her own – bringing her half total to 19 – and Harvard went into the break ahead, 35-32.
Raster opened the second half with a triple in front of the Crimson bench, giving Harvard a six-point advantage, 38-32. The Crimson maintained its lead until six-unanswered points by the Lions knotted the contest at 44-44 with 4:05 to play in the stanza. Porter was there with the answer and the Crimson maintained a four-point lead, 54-50, with 10 minutes to play.
The Lions would not lay down, scoring the first 10 points of the final stanza to open up a 60-54 lead at the 7:29 mark. Harvard came right back, scoring the next six to even the score, 60-60, after a Metoyer move to the basket. Even at 64-64 with 2:27, Raster answered the call with a triple to put the Crimson ahead three. Columbia pulled within one, but the Crimson defense was able to contest shots down the stretch and hold on to win, 69-66.
Harvard returns home to host Penn and Princeton next weekend. The Crimson and Quakers will tip Friday, Feb. 5 at 7 p.m. on NESN. The Crimson and Tigers match up Sunday, Feb. 7 at noon on ASN and NESNplus.
Game Notes: AnnMarie Healy posted double-figures for the 17th time this season and the 40th of her career with 27 points. It marked a career high for the senior and the second time this season Healy has posted 20-plus points. The 27 points marked the most for a Crimson player since Temi Fagbenle (31) at Columbia on March 1, 2014. For the 10th time this year, Kit Metoyer posted double-figures with 11 points. Harvard went with the starting lineup of Healy, Redford, Tummala, Metoyer and Raster for the 14th-straight game. The Crimson moves to 7-7 with that starting five. The Crimson moves to 58-3 all-time against the Lions. Madeline Raster posted double-digits for the first time since Eastern Michigan (Dec. 8) and the fourth time this season.