Dartmouth (6-16) at Yale (10-15)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Friday, February 22, 7 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: John J. Lee Amphitheater (2,532) -- New Haven, Connecticut. Television: None. Home Record: Dartmouth 4-7, Yale 5-3. Away Record: Dartmouth 2-9, Yale 4-10. Neutral Record: Dartmouth 0-0, Yale 1-2. Conference Record: Dartmouth 2-6, Yale 4-4. Series Record: Yale leads, 105-96.
GAMES NOTES: The Yale Bulldogs will play an Ivy League tune-up with the Dartmouth Big Green before a showdown with Harvard, on Friday night at John J. Lee Amphitheater.
Riding three straight losses, Dartmouth comes into this contest as unquestionably the worst team in the Ivy League. Not only are the Big Green tied for last place in the conference (2-6), they are one of just two teams with six or fewer wins overall. The Big Green have lost at least three straight games three different times this season as they enter this four-game road trip that continues against Brown on Saturday.
On the other hand, Yale has begun to pick up some traction with wins in three of its last four contests, including a 75-56 romp of Columbia. The Bulldogs are still quite a bit below .500 overall (10-15) but they have pulled even in league play (4-4) which has them in range of the top spots of the Ivy League. This is the third tilt in a four-game homestand for the Bulldogs who on Saturday host the conference-leading Crimson in a major test.
Yale is just one of two victims for Dartmouth in league play this season after the Big Green posted a 71-62 victory at home earlier this month. The Bulldogs had won seven straight in the series before that and hold a 105-96 advantage all-time against the Big Green.
Against the only other team in the conference that could rival the futility of Dartmouth, the Big Green suffered a 67-57 loss to Penn last time out. The Big Green controlled the first period and led 30-18 at halftime. However after the break Dartmouth cooled to 30 percent shooting, while allowing the Quakers hit a scorching 76.2 percent from the floor.
En route to the basement of the Ivy League, Dartmouth has been one of the conference's worst offensive teams. The Big Green rank at the very bottom of the league in scoring (60.5 pg) and assists (10.5 pg), while sitting in second to last in field-goal percentage (.399). Gabas Maldunas (10.7 ppg, 6.2 rpg) is one of just two players scoring in double figures. The 6-foot-9 forward has heated up in the past two games as he has averaged 17.5 points and nine rebounds per game, however before that he failed to reach in double figures in four of five contests. Alex Mitola (10.1 ppg) is the only other double-figure scorer, but has shot a dismal 36.4 percent from the field.
By controlling the interior the Bulldogs were able to roll over Columbia. Yale outscored the Lions 34-8 in the paint and had a 33-20 edge in rebounds. Justin Sears and Brandon Sherrod each scored 10 points to lead the Lions, who had 12 different players register at least one field goal.
Leading scorer Austin Morgan (11.3 ppg) had just six points against Columbia but also only took two shots from the field. Morgan has been hampered by poor shot selection this season as he hits an erratic 35.5 percent from the field. Sears (10.7 ppg, 5.9 rpg) was right in line with his season average against Columbia as the freshman forward has now scored in double figures in four of his last five games. Having a multitude of scorers has been commonplace for Yale which has 14 different players putting in at least two points per game and 10 over four. As a team Yale is third in the conference in scoring (66.4 ppg), while ranking second behind Brown in rebounds (35.5 pg).
As long as Yale doesn't look past the Big Green with Harvard looming, the Bulldogs should win easily and avenge an earlier loss.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Yale 68, Dartmouth 60
02/22 10:34:58 ET