Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Cornell Athletics Game Notes for Trip to Harvard and Dartmouth

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Roster I Schedule & Results I Statistics

Game #25: Cornell at Harvard
Tip off: Friday, Feb. 28, at 7 p.m.
Site: Lavietes Pavilion (2,050), Cambridge, Mass.
2013-14 Records: Cornell (2-22, 1-9 Ivy); Harvard (22-4, 9-1 Ivy)
Series Record: Cornell leads the series 90-75
Last Meeting: Harvard won 67-44, Feb. 15, 2014 in Ithaca, N.Y.
Radio: 98.7 FM The Buzzer (Barry Leonard)
TV: None
Live Stats: available at www.GoCrimson.com
Live Video: available at www.IvyLeagueDigitalNetwork.com
Tickets: available by calling (607) 254-BEAR

Game #26: Cornell at Dartmouth
Tip off: Saturday, March 1, at 7 p.m.
Site: Leede Arena (2,100), Hanover, N.H.
2013-14 Records: Cornell (2-22, 1-9 Ivy); Dartmouth (9-15, 2-8 Ivy)
Series Record: Cornell leads 104-103
Last Meeting: Cornell won 70-67, Feb. 14, 2014 in Ithaca, N.Y.
Radio: 98.7 FM The Buzzer (Barry Leonard)
TV: NBC Sports Network
Live Stats: available at www.DartmouthSports.com
Live Video: Not available for this game
Tickets: available by calling (607) 254-BEAR

Cornell head coach Bill Courtney is in his fourth season at Cornell (37-74, .333; 19-33 Ivy, .365) ... Courtney became the fifth Robert E. Gallagher '44 Coach of Men's Basketball at Cornell on April 23, 2010.

STORY LINES: The Cornell men's basketball team will hit the road for the final time this season when it boards the bus to visit Ivy League leader Harvard as well as Dartmouth this weekend. The Big Red will face the Crimson on Friday, Feb. 28 and the Big Green on Saturday, March 1 with both games tipping at 7 p.m. Both games will be broadcast live on the Ivy League Digital Network, or you can also listen to Barry Leonard call both games on 98.7 FM The Buzzer in Ithaca.

Cornell has played some good basketball despite its 2-22 record, with two of the losses coming to 2013 NCAA Final Four squads (Syracuse, Louisville) and six total coming at the hands of 2013 postseason squads (Syracuse, Louisville and Notre Dame - NCAA, Stony Brook - NIT, Loyola - CIT, Western Michigan - CBI) that went a combined 161-58 a year ago. Cornell has shown glimpses of really good play despite its heavy reliance on underclassmen and inexperienced upperclassmen. The Big Red led then-No. 8/7 Syracuse by 14 points in the first half and by six at the break, led a Loyola (MD) team that won 23 games a year ago by seven points with five minutes remaining and had a 19-point advantage against Binghamton with 13 minutes left and a 10-point lead with four minutes to play against Siena and led Western Michigan in the second half. Cornell went on to drop each game.

The Big Red backcourt has been its strength, with its lead guards pacing the team in scoring. Sophomore guard Nolan Cressler has had an All-Ivy season for the Big Red, averaging 17.0 points and 4.4 rebounds, while junior Devin Cherry isn't far behind at 12.2 ppg., 4.3 rpg. and 3.4 apg. Cressler has averaged 20.4 ppg. over his last seven games, while Cherry has hit for double figures in 13 of his last 15 contests. Freshmen guards Robert Hatter (9.0 ppg. 2.1 apg.) and Darryl Smith (4.8 ppg., 2.3 rpg.) have split starting duties in the backcourt. Senior forward Dwight Tarwater has been a consistent threat, especially on the backboards, and is posting 6.1 points and 5.8 rebounds per night. Freshman Robert Onuorah (3.4 ppg., 3.9 rpg., 0.8 bpg.) and junior Deion Giddens (3.8 ppg., 3.1 rpg., 0.6 bpg.) are holding down the middle, while senior guards Dominick Scelfo (2.7 ppg.) and Jake Matthews (4.3 ppg.) and junior forward Ned Tomic (3.1 ppg.) are providing firepower off the bench. The Big Red is scoring 64.8 points on 41 percent shooting. Much of Cornell's troubles have come on the defensive end, where the team is allowing 78.2 points on 49 percent shooting, including 39 percent from 3-point range.

• Harvard has won at least a share of three straight Ivy League titles and is tied for first again this season with its 9-1 record.
• The Crimson enter the weekend 22-4 overall, including 9-1 at home at Lavietes Pavilion.
• Six different players are averaging between 9.5 and 14.3 ppg., with Ivy League Player of the Year contender Wesley Saunders leading the way (14.3 ppg., 4.6 rpg., 3.8 apg., 1.9 spg.).
• Siyani Chambers (11.0 ppg., 4.7 apg.) and Kyle Casey (10.0 ppg., 5.7 rpg.) are also averaging double figures.
• The Crimson defense has made all the difference, allowing opponents to score just 60.4 ppg. on 41 percent shooting overall and 32 percent shooting from 3-point range.
• Head coach Tommy Amaker has revitalized the Crimson basketball program, guiding the team to its first three Ivy League titles in program history, along with a pair of NCAA tournament trips.

• Cornell leads the series 90-75 dating back to the first meeting between the teams in the 1901-02 season.
• Harvard has a narrow is 12-11 in the last 23 contests, including seven consecutive wins.
• Cornell's last four wins in the series have come by an average of 24.8 points, though the Crimson have won seven straight over the Big Red by an average of 12.0 points.

• Dartmouth was one of the league's most improved teams during non-conference season and has a 9-15 record (2-8 Ivy).
• The Big Green have lost 11 of their last 13 games, though the two wins were a home sweep of Penn and Princeton.
• Three Dartmouth players enter the weekend scoring in double figures, though leading scorer and rebounder Gabas Maldunas (11.2 ppg., 8.5 rpg.) has missed the last nine games and is expected to miss the rest of the season with a knee injury.
• Connor Boehm (10.3 ppg., 5.5 rpg.) joins Alex Mitola (10.1 ppg.) in double figures. Mitola also leads the team in 3-pointers (50) and assists (61), while John Golden (9.3 ppg) isn't far behind.
• Dartmouth is outrebounding opponents by 3.3 per game (33.9-30.6) and has a neutral assist:turnover ratio (300:302).
• Head coach Paul Cormier, in his second stint and 10th year on the sidelines for Dartmouth, surpassed 200 career coaching wins earlier this season.

• Cornell leads the all-time series 104-103 after 207 games in a series that dates back to the 1900-01 campaign.
• Cornell has had the best of the series recently, having won 18 of the last 21 meetings.
• The two teams split the home-and-home series a year ago and the Big Red took the first meeting this year between the teams, 70-67 in Ithaca on Valentine's Day.

• Cornell's Division I opponents have posted a 337-265 overall record (.560) with 10 teams having won at least 15 times already this season and five with 20 or more victories.
• In the Big Red's 11 home games, Cornell is shooting 43 percent from the floor and has 149 assists to just 121 turnovers.
• Sophomore Nolan Cressler is averaging 20.4 points in his last seven games and ranks third in the circuit in scoring in Ivy League contests (17.7 ppg.).
• After shooting just .303 from beyond the 3-point arc (30-of-99) in non-conference games, Cressler has hit 29-of-63 in Ivy play (.460) to rank fourth in percentage and tied for first in 3-pointers made (2.9 per game).
• Cressler has hit for double figures in nine of 10 Ivy League game with three contests of at least 20 points.
• Cressler has seven consecutive games with multiple 3-point field goals made.
• Junior guard Devin Cherry is one of just two players in the Ivy League averaging at least 14 points, five rebounds and three assists in Ivy League play (14.4, 5.2 rpg., 3.3 apg.), joining first-team All-Ivy candidate T.J. Bray of Princeton (18.3 ppg., 5.0 rpg., 4.3 apg.).
• Cherry scored a career-high 29 points in last weekend's home loss to Yale, then answered with a career-best 10 assists the following night against Brown.
• In his last two games, Cherry has averaged 23.0 points, 6.0 assists, 5.0 rebounds and 1.0 steals.
• Cherry needs one point for 500 in his career and would become the 91st player in school history to hit that mark.
• Senior Jake Matthews is the team's third-leading scorer in Ivy League play, averaging 6.5 points and a team-high 1.1 steals while shooting 40 percent from the floor in Ivy play.
• Matthews is averaging 6.5 points in 11 games since the start of 2014 after posting just 20 points in his first 10 games (2.0 ppg.) during the 2013 calendar year.
• Senior Dwight Tarwater has already surpassed his career high in every category on the stat sheet except games played (25 in 2011-12 season). He is expected to do that this weekend. He surpassed 200 career rebounds and 250 career points in the win over Dartmouth with his third career double-double.
• In Ivy League play, freshman David Onuorah is shooting 67 percent from the floor and is averaging 3.9 points, 4.6 rebounds and 1.0 blocks. In all, 28 of his 46 rebounds in league play have come on the offensive end.
• After getting to the free-throw line 20 or more times just two in the team's 14 non-league contests, Cornell has shot at least 20 shots from the charity stripe in seven of 10 Ivy games.
• The Big Red has also shot 20 or more 3-pointers just four times in its last 12 games after launching from beyond the arc at least 20 times in 11 of its first 12 games, including 32 shots at Syracuse and 41 at Western Michigan.
• In the Big Red's last 10 games, opposing teams are shooting just 35 percent from 3-point range (62-of-177).

• There are numerous way to follow the Big Red through the 203-14 basketball season.
• Men's basketball games will be broadcast on 98.7 FM The Buzzer for the 2013-14 season. Longtime voice of the Big Red Barry Leonard returns on the call with the play-by-play, while former All-Ivy center Eric Taylor'05 is on board to do color analysis.
• A half-hour pregame show and postgame analysis will enable Big Red fans to follow Coach Bill Courtney's team throughout the season.
• The audio of all games will also be available as part of the IvyLeagueDigitalNetwork subscription service.
• The Big Red's home contests will all be broadcast live with streaming video as part of the IvyLeagueDigitalNetwork subscription service. Visit www.IvyLeagueDigitalNetwork.com for all the latest information on Cornell broadcasts.
• Cornell will use SIDEARM Live Stats for each of the Big Red's home games in 2013-14. Visit www.CornellBigRed.com for all of the official statistics.
• You can follow the team on YouTube, Facebook and Twitter. Highlights, interviews and features on all 36 of Cornell's varsity sports can be found at www.youtube.com/cornellathletics, www.facebook.com/cornellathletics or www.twitter.com/cornellsports.

• Cornell closes the 2013-14 campaign at home when it plays host to Princeton and Penn at Newman Arena.
• Both contests will be broadcast live on the Ivy League Digital Network.
• The Big Red will meet the Tigers on Friday, March 7 at 7 p.m. and will face the Quakers the following days at 7 p.m.
• Prior to Saturday's game against Penn, the Big Red will honor seniors Jake Matthews, Dominick Scelfo and Dwight Tarwater for their contributions to the program.

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