A relatively inactive Ivy weekend produced two thrillers and put a halt to the University of Pennsylvania’s (7-5) four-game winning streak.
Princeton (5-7) and Harvard (10-5, 2-0 Ivy), who shares the first place league position with Cornell and Brown, were both inactive.
Cornell 55, Columbia 53
Cornell (7-8, 2-0) held a commanding 37-23 advantage at halftime, but the Lions fought back to give the Big Red a scare in the second. Chris Wiedemann, Columbia’s leading rebounder with eight, made one of two from the line to tie the score 50-50 just past the two-minute mark. The two teams scored once more each, and then Cornell hit three of four foul shots to close out the win.
Columbia (2-13, 0-2), shooting just 36 percent this season, continued its evasion of the basket with a 39 percent outing. Cornell connected on 45 percent of its attempts, including a 7-for-12 performance by Ka’Ron Barnes, who led all scorers with 17 points.
Columbia’s high-man was bench player Allan MacQuarrie, who shocked fans by making three out of five long distance attempts.
Even more astounding was that MacQuarrie was seeing less than 4 minutes of action per game before logging 21 in this contest. Tito Hill followed MacQuarrie on the Lions scoring list, netting 9 points. Columbia fans hope it is an omen of things to come: both players are sophomore guards.
As of Jan. 23, the Lions failed to have a single player among the top 20 scoring leaders in the Ancient Eight.
Albany 85, Dartmouth 84 (3 OT)
Dartmouth senior Charles Harris did about all he could to drag his teammates to a win, but when he fouled out with 3:30 to go in the last overtime, Dartmouth (4-11, 0-2) finally succumbed.
Harris, the leading scorer with a career-high 32, made two free throws — he was 10 of 10 on the night — with two seconds left in the second half to force the game to overtime. His shot with just under a minute left in the first overtime pushed Dartmouth into the second extra period. Dartmouth trailed by three in that overtime, but Harris banged a trifecta with 6.1 seconds left. He logged 52 minutes in the game.
Albany’s Antione Johnson scored 25 points; freshman teammate Jamar Wilson added 20. Johnson and Earv Opong both played the entire game for Albany.
It doesn’t get much closer than this game: Dartmouth snagged 37 rebounds, Albany 36; both teams had 11 turnovers, 2 blocked shots, and 22 personal fouls; and Albany dished out 17 assists to Dartmouth’s 14.
Dartmouth sophomores David Gardner and Steve Callahan combined for 26 of Big Green’s points.
Rahsheed Peterson, Johnson, and Opong each made three 3-pointers for the Danes.
St. Joseph’s 66, Pennsylvania 48
St. Joseph’s entered the game with the nationally ranked No. 3 defense — and it showed. Penn (7-5) had averaged 91 points per game over its last three contests, but the Quakers could connect on only 35 percent from the field and four of 17 from beyond the arc against the Hawk defense.
St. Joseph’s was on the right end of both a turnover differential of seven and a five-rebound edge. Jameer Nelson and Pat Carrol combined for 34 points.
Penn’s Ugonna Onyekwe, Jeff Schiffner and Koko Archibong scored 13, 12 and 10 points respectively.
The Quakers’ starting backcourt of Andrew Toole and Tim Begley did not score a field goal in the first 37 minutes of the game. Penn managed to narrow the gap to eight midway through the second half at the high-water mark of an 11-3 run, but St. Joseph’s scored the next five to open up 54-41 advantage with less than 4 minutes remaining. Almost 9,000 people were in the Palestra to see the Hawks up their Big Five record to 2-0, while Penn dropped its first game in the heated Philadelphia backyard tournament. They are now 2-1 against Big Five opponents, with only LaSalle remaining on the schedule.