Basketball teams face weekend road trips as Ivy Tournament draws nearer| Feb 15, 2018
This weekend, Princeton basketball will be racking up miles, with the men’s and women’s teams going on the road together. The men’s team (11–12, 3–5 Ivy) will be going to Cornell (9–12, 3–5) and Columbia (6–15, 3–5) on Friday and Saturday night, respectively. The women (17–4, 7–1 Ivy) will also be playing against the Big Red (6–15, 2–6) and the Lions (7–16, 1–7) on Friday and Saturday night respectively. This weekend will be pivotal for both teams as they make their final pushes for the Ivy League standings. Each team has four only games left after this weekend.
For the men’s team, this weekend is all about getting back in competition for the top four to make the Ivy League Tournament in mid-March. With two losses last weekend, the Tigers have lost four games in a row and are now tied for No. 5 at 3–5 with Cornell and Columbia. This weekend will be one of immense pressure for the Tigers, as the Big Red and the Lions will have circled these games as more winnable than their other games against league-leading Penn. History is on Princeton’s side, as it won the last two in Ithaca and the last eight in Columbia’s Levien Gymnasium. When these teams played earlier in the season, Princeton won both games, beating Columbia 72–56 and Cornell 91–54. The key for the Tigers in these wins was sharp-shooting when they shot 53.3 percent against Cornell and 46.2 percent against Columbia. One bit of history to watch for this weekend is junior guard Devin Cannady’s three-point shooting on the all-time list and the single-season record. Cannady is eight back from Spencer Weisz ’17, who sits at No. 5 on the all-time list. The single-season three-pointer record is held by Sean Jackson ’92, who made 95 in 1990–91, a record from which Cannady 30 short with four regular season games left.
The women’s team this weekend will face two of the bottom three teams in the Ivy League in games where it will be the favorite to win. As seen last weekend, the most important consideration for Princeton this weekend will be their defense, which is quickly turning into one of the top in the country. They allow on average 55.4 points per game, which is 18th in the country. One other key spark for the Tigers has been their bench scoring, a group of players that has averaged over 30 points in the last nine games. Cornell and Columbia have both struggled on offense to put up points and collect their misses. Rebounding has been a strong point for Princeton so far this season, as it leads the Ivy League with a +9.1 rebounding margin.
After this weekend, there will be two more weekends of Ivy League play before the Ivy League Tournament. The men and women will be home on alternate weekends, with the men home next weekend against Harvard and Dartmouth. The following weekend, the women will be home against Brown and Yale to end their season. If you are unable to make the trip to the games this weekend, Friday’s games against Cornell will be streaming on the Ivy League Network. Saturday’s games against Columbia will be streaming on the Ivy League Network, as well as on SNY for the women’s game and on Eleven Sports for the men’s game.