CAMBRIDGE, Mass.—After an electrifying performance, the Harvard women's basketball team took down Cornell in a dominant 80-38 victory at Lavietes Pavilion Friday night. In addition to clinching a spot in the 2019 Ivy Madness Tournament, head coach Kathy Delaney-Smith celebrated a career milestone, earning her 600th career victory. With tonight's win, Harvard heads into its final matchup of the 2018-19 season with a 15-11 (8-5 Ivy) record.
Firing on all cylinders, the Crimson had five players—Katie Benzan, Rachel Levy, Nani Redford, Sydney Skinner and Jeannie Boehm—register double-digits in the scoring column, with junior guard Benzan leading the pack with 17. Boehm found success on both sides of the ball, dropping 10 points and posting 11 boards to help lift the Crimson over Cornell. With a team total 26 defensive rebounds, 13 steals and four blocks, the Crimson was able to hold Cornell to its lowest scoring margin this season.
Opening the night for Harvard, Levy dropped four of the Crimson's five opening shots to give the team an early 10-4 lead over the visiting Big Red. Harvard capitalized on the offensive momentum, going on a ten-point scoring run to extend its advantage over the Big Red to double digits. A strong presence in the paint from Boehm and Levy allowed to Crimson to maintain possession off the rebound, keeping Cornell to just eight points in first.
Moving into the second period, Harvard maintained its command of the court, dropping an impressive 21 points to Cornell's five. Finding its rhythm from range, the Crimson took advantage of its three-point efficiency to further drive up the score, with Redford, Benzan, Skinner and Levy each sinking shots from the top of the key to send Harvard into the locker room with a 44-13 lead.
With Cornell pushing to close the gap, the Crimson piled on the offense as the teams moved into the third frame, adding another 22 points. Harvard asserted itself under the basket, keeping out the Big Red and posting 13 boards to hold Cornell to just 12. Exchanging shots throughout the final period, Harvard was able to seal its imposing 80-38 victory with a final game-ending shot from first-year Maggie McCarthy with just over a minute to go.
-Five Crimson players – Nani Redford (13), Katie Benzan (17), Rachel Levy (15) Sydney Skinner (13) and Jeannie Boehm (10) – registered double-digits in the scoring column to help push Harvard past Cornell.
-Jeannie Boehm logged a double-double in tonight's victory, picking up 10 points and 11 boards.
-Nani Redford and Rachel Levy each picked up a team-high three steals.
- With the victory, head coach Kathy Delaney-Smith earned her 600th career win.
- Harvard clinched a spot in the 2019 Ivy League Tournament tonight.
- The Crimson now moves to 69-12 in the all-time series against Cornell.
- Harvard held Cornell to its lowest scoring margin so far this season.
The Crimson closes out the regular season with a home tilt against Columbia on Saturday, March 9, at 5 p.m.