Harvard (18-9, 10-4 Ivy) vs. Penn (20-7, 11-3 Ivy)
The Harvard women's basketball team begins the postseason this Saturday, traveling to Philadelphia to take part in the 2018 Ivy League Basketball Tournament at The Palestra. The Crimson enter the conference tournament as the three-seed and will face second-seeded Penn at approximately 8:30 p.m. The semifinal matchup can be seen live on ESPN3.
Harvard and Penn will be joined at The Palestra by top-seeded Princeton and fourth-seeded Yale. The Tigers and Bulldogs will square off at 6 p.m. Saturday night. The winner of both semifinal games will advance to the championship game Sunday at 4 p.m. Both semifinal matchups pit teams against each other that split their respective regular season meetings.
LAST TIME OUT
Harvard wrapped up the regular season over the weekend with victories at Cornell and Columbia. After winter weather pushed both games back one day, Harvard stormed past Cornell on Saturday with a 91-57 win. Five Crimson players reached double figures and sophomore Jeannie Boehm had her fourth double-double of the season with 15 points and 10 rebounds. The regular season finale saw freshman Jadyn Bush go for a career-high 21 points, as Harvard dispatched Columbia, 78-59.
SERIES HISTORY VS. PENN
Harvard and Penn split its season series this year with each team winning on its home court. Penn was able to take a 69-49 decision at The Palestra Feb. 10, but the Crimson repaid the result with a 55-52 triumph at Lavietes Pavilion Feb. 23. In the victory, senior Taylor Rooks stood out, scoring 21 points and grabbing 12 rebounds for one of her team-high five double-doubles this season. The win also marked the 50th all-time for the Crimson over the Quakers. Harvard is 50-31 all-time against Penn.
IVY TOURNAMENT REWIND
The Ivy League Tournament is entering just its second year of existence in 2018. Harvard qualified for the inaugural Ivy tournament a year ago as the three-seed, where it fell to Princeton in the semifinals.
Harvard has qualified for the NCAA Tournament on six occasions and was selected to the WNIT for the seventh time in program history last season. In the 2017 WNIT, Harvard defeated New Hampshire, 69-56, in the first round, but fell to St. John's in the second round, 62-57. Harvard last reached the NCAA Tournament in 2007.
Sophomore Katie Benzan is among the best shooters in the nation from 3-point range. Her 46.8 percent shooting percentage from distance is fifth-best in the nation. She has made 91 3-pointers this season, and 176 in her career, which is third all-time. The 91-made 3-pointers broke her own single-season program record, as she hit 85 a year ago as a freshman. Victoria Lippert '12 ranks second all-time in career threes with 185 and Erin Maher '92 is the program-leader with 245.
Sophomore forward Jeannie Boehm has made it difficult for opponents to score during her career. This season, she has blocked 67 shots, ranking second in the Ivy League with 2.5 per game. Her 67 blocks are the sixth-most in a single season. As a freshman in 2017 she swatted 73, the fifth-most.
BUSH BREAKS OUT
Freshman Jadyn Bush had a career-outing Sunday, March 4 when she scored 21 points on 8-of-10 shooting. The Federal Way, Washington native made her first six shots of the game.
Harvard put the finishing touches on a historic season at Lavietes Pavilion Feb. 23-24. With its wins over Penn and Princeton on its renovated home floor, the Crimson finished the regular season 12-0 at home. The 12 wins are the most at home in Harvard's history in a single season and the unbeaten mark is just the fourth-ever in program history.
Harvard has not lost a game when it...
- Scores over 70 points (15-0)
- Shoots over 35 percent from 3-point (13-0)
- Is leading at halftime (16-0)
- Shooting 50 percent or better from the field (7-0)
Senior Taylor Rooks has twice been named Ivy League Player of the Week. The Warren, New Jersey native picked up the honors Jan. 29 and Feb. 26. Sophomore Katie Benzan was also recognized with the honor on Feb. 5.
Senior Taylor Rooks registered her team-best fifth double-double Feb. 23, scoring 21 points and grabbing 12 rebounds in a win over Penn. Sophomore Jeannie Boehm also has four double-doubles this season, most recently at Cornell (15 points, 10 rebounds). Freshman Jadyn Bush earned her first collegiate double-double Feb. 3 vs. Cornell with 12 points and 11 rebounds.
The Crimson's 8.3 3-pointers per game is the highest average in the Ancient Eight and ranks 32nd nationally. Harvard hit a season-high 14 triples at Northeastern Dec. 6, as well as Jan. 26 against Yale.
80 FOUR STRAIGHT
The Crimson scored 80 or more points in four consecutive games, Jan. 26 - Feb. 3. Harvard last scored 80 points in four consecutive games in January 1998. Harvard has seven games of 80+ points this year and two over 90 points.
Penn enters the Ivy League Tournament as the two-seed. During the 14-game conference slate, Penn held opponents to 51.8 points per game, the lowest mark in the Ancient Eight. The Quakers were also the top rebounding team in the conference, pulling down 43.9 total boards and 16.1 on the offensive glass during conference play.
Senior Michelle Nwokedi and freshman Eleah Parker both rank in the top five in the conference in blocks at 2.6 and 2.0 per game, respectively. In conference play, Nwokedi leads the team with 12.5 ppg, with Parker coming in at 11.2. Senior Anna Ross has the League's best assist-to-turnover ratio at 2.4.
AROUND THE YARD
Juniors Madeline Raster and Nani Redford wrote a phenomenal blogs as part of the Athletic Department's larger "Around the Yard" series. Raster detailed her experience on a mission trip to Trinidad and Tobago where she spent a week teaching sports to underprivileged children and Redford described her trip to Africa.
IVY LEAGUE NETWORK
The Ivy League Network returns for a fifth season as the home for all live streaming and on-demand video content for each of the conference's eight institutions. Broadcast in full HD and featuring a live score bug and play-by-play and color commentary, the Ivy League Network provides fans with unprecedented access to the Ancient Eight.
Multiple subscription options are available to fans, including school-specific and league-wide passes. To learn more about the Ivy League Network or to sign-up today, click here.