BASKETBALL | Elis clawed by Wildcats

Though Sam Martin ’13 went 5–6 from the free-throw line and the Elis shot 75 percent to the Wildcats’ 55.6 percent from the strip, the Bull- dogs still fell 64–56.
Though Sam Martin ’13 went 5–6 from the free-throw line and the Elis shot 75 percent to the Wildcats’ 55.6 percent from the strip, the Bull- dogs still fell 64–56. Photo by Alex Interiano.

Myrick torched the Elis for 24 points and added 11 rebounds as he led the Wildcats (4–5, 0–0 American East) to a 64–56 victory in Durham, N.H.

“He played power forward but was only 6-foot-6, maybe 6-foot-5,” forward Armani Cotton ’15 said. “So he had an edge in quickness.”

Head coach James Jones added that hybrid power forwards like Myrick who can shoot the basketball have been a problem for Yale (3–7, 0–0 Ivy) all season.

The Bulldogs also shot themselves in the foot by committing 18 turnovers that New Hampshire converted into 23 points on the other end. The Elis have had 10 or more turnovers nine times this season and have the third-most in the Ivy League with 15.3 turnovers per game. Jones said that cutting down on turnovers will be a point of emphasis in practice during the 10-day break between games for exams.

“We’re trying to improve on everything,” Jones said. “But really our communication on the court is extremely important to us. We’ve averaged too many turnovers to be successful.”

That lack of communication has led to poor ball movement on offense. The Elis assisted only five of their 17 field goals on Saturday, less than half their season average 10.8 assists per game.

Faulty execution was one reason why Yale shot so poorly from the floor against New Hampshire, center Jeremiah Kreisberg ’14 said. The Elis were just 1–14 from beyond the arc and shot a paltry 37.8 percent (17–45) from the floor against the Wildcats.

Cotton added that the Elis sometimes forgo open looks early in the shot clock so as not to get out of the offense, leading to contested looks late in the possession.

“We need to have some swagger and confidence in our shooting ability,” Cotton said.

The Wildcats, meanwhile, made 24 of 53 shots and dished out 13 assists on Saturday.

Recovering from off-season back surgery, Kreisberg had his second straight strong game with a 14-point, eight-rebound performance. Jones said that Kreisberg has been Yale’s most consistent post player in recent practices, but the center believes that he has room for improvement.

“I got cleared to play the day before the first game started, so I was just kind of thrown back in there,” Kreisberg said. “It’s just about me getting back in shape [and] getting more comfortable with my teammates on the floor.”

Kreisberg also scored 14 points in last Wednesday’s 64–62 buzzer-beating victory at Bryant. Those performances earned Kreisberg a spot on the Ivy League Honor Roll for the week.

Forward Justin Sears ’16 joined Kreisberg on the honor roll. He contributed 10 points and two rebounds at New Hampshire to go with his 20-point, nine-rebound game against Bryant.

Guard Austin Morgan ’13 netted 12 for the Bulldogs on Saturday, and Cotton chipped in seven points and nine boards.

Yale will return to the John J. Lee Amphitheater on Dec. 18 against Albertus Magnus at 7:00 p.m.

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