NEW HAVEN, CT 3/17/2019 – The Yale Bulldogs captured the Men’s Ivy League title by virtue of their 97 – 85 win over the Harvard Crimson. Yale will get an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.
The Bulldogs came into the tournament as the #2 seed. The Crimson were the top seed. Despite the game being played at the John J. Lee Amphitheater, Yale was the visiting team in this one. They got here defeating Princeton in the semifinal game. Harvard won over Penn to get to the final.
Alex Copeland led the Eli with 25 points and dished out 7 assists. He was 7 of 9 from the foul line, and was named the tournament Most Outstanding Player.
Bryce Aiken, named to the all-tournament team, scored a game-high 38 points for the Crimson, setting a tournament scoring record. Aiken made all 12 of his foul shots and had a team-best 4 assists.
Both teams went at each other from the start. They knew what was on the line and wanted that trophy and the bid. Yale led 43 – 42 at halftime. True to form the lead went back and forth in the final 20 minutes. Harvard took its last lead with twelve and half minutes at 59 – 58 left on a basket by Noah Kirkwood, two of his 19 points.
The Bulldogs took the lead back a few seconds later when Blake Reynolds converted. It was the start of a 15 consecutive point run that gave control of the game to Yale. When Aiken hit two free throws at 8:05 to break the streak, the Eli led by 12. Copeland scored 8 of the points in the decisive run. The lead would remain getting no less than 9 points.
In addition to Copeland Yale had four other players score in double-digits. Miye Oni, also named to the all-tournament team, had 17 points, and was 10 for 10 from the charity stripe. Azar Swain scored 15 while Blake Reynolds and Jordan Bruner contributed 14 and 10 points. Swain grabbed a team-best 6 rebounds.
The Bulldogs went inside for their offense getting 42 points in the paint. Their shooting percentage for the game was 60.4% (32 – 53) and made 28 of 30 free throws. The Crimson got 10 three-pointers which doubled the output of the Eli from distance, and were good on 28 of 62 field goal attempts (45.2%).
Yale will happily await the decision of the Tournament Committee later today.
Written By: Glenn Papazian