Penn beats Columbia for an Ivy sweep, Harvard loses to Yale and all of a sudden, the Quakers have a pulse in the Ivy League. Here’s the Good, the Bad and the Ugly from the Quakers’ win over the Lions.
The Good: Fran Dougherty’s sweaty locks … and his play too
Dougherty got whatever he wanted for much of the night, finishing with 23 points on 10-for-14 shooting. With Darien Nelson-Henry in foul trouble for much of the first half, with him only able to play six minutes, Dougherty stepped up, putting up 19 points without missing any of his eight shot attempts. He was a big reason that Penn was able to jump out to its 10-point halftime lead.
The Bad: Columbia’s interior defense
Penn has three-point shooters, but the Quakers didn’t need them tonight. Coach Jerome Allen’s gameplan was to get the ball inside, and that’s what they did. Penn only took eight threes on the night, while 32 of its points came in the paint.
Not only did Penn spend the first half sending the ball down low to Dougherty, but sophomore Tony Hicks and his fellow guards were able to attack at will. Hicks finished with 13 points, getting to the line six times. Freshmen Tony Bagtas and Matt Howard got into the action as well, as Bagtas completed a three-point play in the second half, while Howard had the play of the game when he was able to control himself while in mid air to sink a shot despite being mauled by his defender.
The Ugly: Columbia’s free throw shooting
If you want to hang around in league play and have a chance at going to the NCAA tournament, you have to make your foul shots. Columbia’s free throw percentage of 57 percent on the night might be what keeps the Lions from competing with Harvard for an NCAA berth down the line. Those handful of points matter in a close contest like this one, where Penn was up by just six late in the game, with Columbia in possession of the rock.
The Uglier: Alex Rosenberg’s drives
Columbia hung around for a while in the second half, but each time, Alex Rosenberg killed the Lions’ momentum with drives where he left the court too early, forcing him out of rhythm.
He finished the game going 4-for-9 from the field, but his two missed lay ups late in the contest sealed this one for the Quakers.