Sunday, December 2, 2012

Game Recap: Cornell 70, Colgate 63







ITHACA — After seeing some of its fans walk out of Newman Arena early during Wednesday’s 76-53 loss, senior forward Errick Peck said the Cornell men’s basketball team felt like it had something to prove in Saturday’s home game against regional rival Colgate.

Thanks to a double-double by sophomore forward Shonn Miller and a key second-half scoring run, the Big Red did not disappoint, sending itself into a two-week exam break with a 70-63 victory over the Raiders at Newman Arena.

Miller, last year’s Ivy League Rookie of the Year, set career highs with 20 points and 14 rebounds and Cornell outscored Colgate 13-3 during a key five-minute span of the second half to take control of the game.

“Definitely important,” said Peck of Saturday’s victory. “First, because we have two weeks of nothing but practice so we want to make sure we come off with a win. Second, we didn’t play very well the other day (Wednesday) and with fans walking out and stuff, that hurt our pride a little bit. We came in and had a good practice (Friday) and just wanted to get this one so bad.”

Wednesday’s loss was the Big Red’s worst home defeat under third-year coach Bill Courtney, whose team doesn’t play again until Dec. 17, when it travels to Vanderbilt. Two days later, Cornell plays Duke at Cameron Indoor Stadium.

“Obviously, when you have such a long time off, if you sit with a loss it really burns you up,” said Courtney. “I wanted to see us do some things, particularly at the defensive end. We have to have the identity of a gutsy, hard-nosed defensive team, and I thought we were able to do that a little bit in the second half.”

Peck scored 10 of his 14 points in the first half, which saw the Raiders (3-5) open the scoring with a 3-pointer but not lead again until after halftime. Miller, who added four blocks and three steals, gave his team its biggest lead of the opening 20 minutes with a dunk that made it 31-21 with 6:22 to go in the half.

Colgate hung around for the remainder of the first half and into the second 20 minutes, however, and the game was tied at 41, 43, 45 and 47 before the Big Red (4-5) made its decisive run, a 22-9 burst that culminated in its largest lead of the game, 69-56, with 2:14 remaining.

Senior guard Miles Asafo-Adjei started things for the hosts with an outside jumper, and, after a free throw from classmate Jonathan Gray, Peck made it five straight points for Cornell with an emphatic put-back dunk on a miss from Gray. After a pair of free throws from Big Red freshman Nolan Cressler and a 3-pointer from Colgate, sophomore Galal Cancer scored inside for Cornell and Miller added four straight points to put the Big Red up 60-50 with 6:59 remaining.

Maine-transfer Murphy Burnatowski cut the Raiders’ deficit to seven with a 3-pointer with 4:55 remaining, but Miller responded with a three of his own to push the lead back to 65-55 with 4:34 on the clock and, despite a late rally, Colgate could not keep pace.

After scoring 17 points in the first half on 3-of-7 shooting from beyond the arc, Burnatowski was limited to seven second-half points and finished 5-for-13 from distance.

Miller hit on 6-of-10 shots from the floor, including his only 3-point attempt, while also going 7-of-9 from the free throw line. Gray finished with 10 points and five rebounds for Cornell, which shot 40 percent from the field and made 6-of-22 attempts from behind the 3-point arc. Colgate was held to just 38 percent shooting overall, 28 percent from 3-point range.

Cornell, which improved to 70-53 all-time against the Raiders, doesn’t return to Newman Arena till Jan. 2, when it hosts Bucknell.


ITHACA — Sophomore forward Shonn Miller scored 20 points and grabbed 14 rebounds and the Cornell men’s basketball team went on a key second-half scoring run on its way to a 70-63 victory over Colgate at Newman Arena on Saturday evening.

The Big Red led 39-36 at the half but could not shake the Raiders until midway through the second half, when, with the score tied at 47, Cornell outscored the visitors 13-3 in a span of 5:11 and went on to score 22 of the next 31 points to take its largest lead of the game at 69-56 with 2:14 remaining.

Cornell was coming off its worst home loss under third-year coach Bill Courtney, a 76-53 defeat to Stony Brook on Wednesday, and doesn’t play again until Dec. 17 when it travels to Vanderbilt.

“Definitely important,” said senior forward Errick Peck of Saturday’s victory. “First, because we have two weeks of nothing but practice so we want to make sure we come off on a win. Second, we didn’t play very well the other day, and with fans walking out and stuff, that hurt our pride a little bit. We came in and had a good practice yesterday and just wanted to get this one so bad.”

Peck scored 10 of his 14 points in the first half, which saw the Raiders (3-5) open the scoring with a 3-pointer but never lead again until after halftime. Miller, who added four blocks and three steals, gave his team its biggest lead of the opening 20 minutes with a dunk inside that made it 31-21 with 6:22 before halftime.

Colgate hung around for the remainder of the first half and into the second 20 minutes, however, and the game was tied at 41, 43, 45 and 47 before the Big Red (4-5) made its decisive run.

Senior guard Miles Asafo-Adjei started things for the hosts with an outside jumper, and, after a free throw from classmate Jonathan Gray, Peck made it five straight points for Cornell with an emphatic put-back dunk on a miss from Gray.

After a pair of free throws from Big Red freshman Nolan Cressler and a 3-pointer from Colgate, sophomore Galal Cancer scored inside for Cornell and Miller added four straight points to put the Big Red up 60-50 with 6:59 remaining.

Maine-transfer Murphy Burnatowski cut the Raiders’ deficit to seven with a 3-pointer with 4:55 remaining, but Miller responded with a three of his own to push the lead back to 65-55 with 4:34 on the clock and despite a late rally Colgate could not keep pace.

After scoring 17 points in the first half on 3-ffor-7 shooting from beyond the arc, Burnatowski was limited to seven second-half points and finished 5-for-13 from long distance.

“I wanted to see us do some things, particularly at the defensive end,” said Courtney. “One of the things about who we have to be as a team, we have to have the identity of a gutsy, hard-nosed defensive team, and I thought we were able to do that a little bit in the second half.”

Gray finished with 10 points and five rebounds for Cornell, which shot 40 percent from the field and made 6-of-22 attempts from behind the 3-point arc.

Saturday’s contest was the 124th meeting between the Big Red and the Raiders, and Cornell’s third in the past eight encounters. Overall, the Big Red holds a 71-53 edge in the rivalry, which started in 1901.


Box Score

Box Score (PDF)

ITHACA, N.Y. -- The ball came high off the left side of the rim, right into the waiting hands of Shonn Miller. The sophomore knew just what to do with it, electrifying the Newman Nation crowd with a thunderous dunk.

In the end, it wasn't Miller's three rim-rattling dunks that got the Cornell basketball team a win, but it exemplified the fun the Big Red had in getting the 70-63 decision over Colgate on Saturday evening at Newman Arena.

Miller had career highs of 20 points and 14 rebounds as the Big Red improved to 3-1 over its last four games heading into the final exam break and improved to 4-5 on the season. The Raiders slipped to 3-5 with the loss.

Miller was a dominant force all evening, hitting on 6-of-10 shots from the floor, including his only 3-point attempt, while draining 7-of-9 free throws. The 2011-12 Ivy League Rookie of the Year added four blocked shots and three steals in the winning effort. He led a defensive charge that saw the Big Red surrender just 38 percent shooting overall and 28 percent from 3-point range.

Along with Miller's double-double, Errick Peck scored 14 points and had seven rebounds off the bench, while Johnathan Gray notched 10 points, five rebounds and three assists. Miles Asafo-Adjei had eight points and four assists while providing excellent full-court defense, and Eitan Chemerinski made all four of his field goals for nine points and added a pair of big offensive rebounds.

Colgate got 24 points from Murphy Burnatowski, while Brandon James had an 11-point, 11-rebound double-double off the bench for the Raiders. Both Luke Roh and Pat Moore chipped in nine points, with Roh adding nine rebounds, three assists and two steals.

Miller missed a couple of early shots, but it was his aggressiveness that stood out. He blocked a pair of shots in the first two and a half minutes as the Big Red opened the game on an 18-7 run and never trailed after Burnatowski opened the game with a 3-pointer for the Raiders. Gray answered with a 3-pointer on Cornell's next possession to tie, the first of his three straight treys in the first five minutes.

From 18-7 and 20-9, the Big Red couldn't run away with it, Colgate would never let them. The Raiders brought the deficit back to three by halftime and then tied the contest four times in the second half, the last at 47-47 with 12 minutes remaining. Each time, the Big Red responded.

A 7-0 Cornell run that started with a jumper from a 10-foot jumper by Asafo-Adjei was highlighted by a Peck putback dunk that was every bit impressive as Miller's in the first half. The lead grew to as many as 13 (69-56) with just over two minutes remaining on a finger roll by Asafo-Adjei. Colgate used a pair of late turnovers to get the ball back down just three, but forced a pair of misses and rebounded both to run out the clock.

Cornell will take a 16-day break for final exams before returning to action at Vanderbilt on Monday, Dec. 17, at 8 p.m. ET.


Box Score

ITHACA, N.Y. – The Colgate men's basketball team dropped a 70-63 decision Saturday night to Central New York rival Cornell, after rallying back from 13 points down with two minutes left to play.

“We turned them over late,” head coach Matt Langel said. “They were playing the clock so the game clock was on our side, because they weren't really trying to score. With that you get a chance to grab a few turnovers. It would have been interesting had Murphy's shot gone down at the top of the key and made it a one-possession game there with only a couple dozen seconds left.”

Colgate moves to 3-and-5 on the season but saw Murphy Burnatowski and Brandon James reach double digit scoring. Burnatowski led all scorers with 24 points, while James earned himself his second double-double of the season with 11 points and 11 boards. Luke Roh added to the scoring knocking down all four of his shots. He also grabbed nine rebounds throughout the game.

“Cornell was at home and they were coming off a pretty tough loss, where they didn't play their best so it just seemed like they wanted the game a little bit more,” he added. “We need our guys to be efficient scorers. We are trying to teach our players to take what the defense gives us.”

The Raiders shot only 30% in the second half but still managed to make it a close game in the last couple minutes of play.

Cornell (4-5) saw three players in double digits. Shonn Miller tallied a double-double with 20 points and 14 rebounds. Johnathan Gray (10 points) and Errick Peck (14) also added to the Big Red scoring. Peck, who went 2-of-3 from long, also grabbed seven rebounds in the win.

After making the first 3-pointer of the game, giving Colgate the early 3-0 lead, Cornell hit the next three baskets, two of which were from behind the arc. The Big Red extended their lead to as much as 11 before the Raiders started chipping away at the deficit.

Mid-way through the half James found Roh, who made a great cut behind his defender for the easy layup, pulling Colgate within nine with 11 minutes left to play.

Roh then came up big on the other end with a block, after Cornell broke on a fast break opportunity. He added to his scoring grabbing the next basket with 8:07 left in the half.

The Raiders pulled to within one on two free throws from Burnatowski making it 37-36 in favor of the Big Red. Cornell would head into the locker room however with a three-point advantage after the first 20 minutes.

During the first five minutes of the second half, junior Pat Moore knocked down two key baskets to tie the game at 41 all. In a three minute time-span the scored was tied four times, after both teams were exchanging buckets.  The Big Red then went on an 8-1 run, creating a 12-point margin with five minutes left to play.

Each time the Raiders fought back it seemed as though the Big Red had the answer making most of their shots on their end of the court.

In last minute of play, Colgate started a little rally that pulled them within six. A good layup by Roh and James plus a 3-pointer by Burnatowski made it 69-63 with 30 seconds left. Unfortunately the deficit was just too big and the Raiders eventually fell to the Big Red.

Colgate will be back on the court Wednesday when they travel to Quinnipiac for a 7 p.m. tip-off. This will be the last road game of a six-game road trip in which the Raiders so far have gone 2-and-3.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Right now, exactly ZERO teams in the Ivy League have a winning record. What, if anything, does this say about the conference?

BigRed1965 said...

Was a good game to watch (on Redcast). Shonn Miller showed how athletic and dominating he can be. Errick Peck demonstrated his finesse and shooting ability. Miles Asafo-Adjei ran the team with poise and even stuck in a few jump shots that one rarely sees. Eitan Chemerinski reminded us of what he can do around the hoop when there is no overpowering 6-11 or 70 center in the way. With the men beating Colgate and the women beating Morgan State, it was a good day for Big Red basketball.

Unknown said...

To first comment: I think it says we are an academic conference that doesn't give sports scholarships, and we play our pre-conference games against teams that do. Ivy teams have been scheduling up a little recently against better non-con competition, and this is a slightly down year talent-wise (but not historically bad by any means). Many a time we lost to Colgate, as opposed to winning comfortably (except for that 4th quarter lapse). I thought it was a moderately encouraging game, thinking ahead to the Ivys. We will likely get trounced in the next two, so take succor where you can.

Anonymous said...

I do agree with Big Red 1965. It was good to c , however the upside is that when Cornell starts running on all cylinders it will b something truly to c. Cressler becoming more consistent and Cherry getting more playing time should help upgrade the scorings from the guards, making Cornell even more balanced..... Increased scoring and that good trapping defense we saw in flashes will do wonders for Big Red Basketball!!!!!!!!!! Should b very exciting come January!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Love the flashes of good, CU - and put it all together which will be better, and shoot 80+% from FT and we'll win more than our share!!