Men's Hoops Keeps Momentum Going, Defeats Columbia 77-66
PRINCETON -- Keeping its momentum going from the win over Harvard last weekend, the Princeton men's basketball team defeated Columbia Friday night 77-66 in Jadwin Gym in front of another ESPNU audience.
Princeton improves to 5-3 in the Ivy League and 14-10 overall, while the Lions drop to 14-11, 3-6 in the Ivy.
The teams traded nine lead changes and nine ties before Princeton began to pull away midway through the second half. The Tigers went on a 7-0 run to gain a nine-point lead at 51-42 with 8:30 to play and Columbia got no closer than five the rest of the way.
Douglas Davis led Princeton with 20 points, moving him past current assistant coach Brian Earl '99 (1,428) for fifth on the school scoring list, now with 1,432. His two 3-pointers give him 254 for his career, moving him past Penn alum Tim Begley (2001-05, 253 3s) for third on the Ivy League's all-time list. In that ranking, Davis is behind only Earl (281) and Cornell's Ryan Wittman (2006-10, 377).
Mack Darrow added a career-high 19 points for Princeton, besting his previous career high of 13 set against Bucknell last season. Ian Hummer also had double-figure points for Princeton, adding 16 to boost his career total to 1,055 and move him into 25th place on the school's all-time list. During the game, he moved past former coach Sydney Johnson '97 (1,044) and former teammate Dan Mavraides '11 (1,054).
The Tigers were unable to gain any ground in the Ivy race as Yale, Penn and Harvard all won. Harvard leads the league at 8-1 with Yale right behind at 7-2, Penn at 6-2 and now the Tigers at 5-3. Princeton moves into fourth place in the Ivy at present with Cornell's (5-4) loss to Penn.
Princeton enjoyed a 30-25 advantage on the glass, a contrast from when Columbia center Mark Cisco paced the Lions to a 36-22 rebounding edge as part of a double-double night when the Tigers won in Manhattan 62-58 last month. Where Cisco had 12 points and 10 boards that night, he finished with four points and five rebounds in the rematch.
"I thought the help defense on Cisco was great," Darrow said. "Every time he caught it, guys were digging and he wasn't as comfortable off the dribble as some other guys were, maybe."
Brian Barbour again had a big night for the Lions, and again it came in a loss. Following up his 25-point effort in January against Princeton, Barbour put in 22 points tonight as one of three Columbia players with double-figure points along with Blaise Staab (12) and Chris Crockett (11).
After handing Columbia its largest defeat of the Ivy League season, Princeton will try to answer Cornell's league-opening win over the Tigers in Ithaca last month when the Big Red comes to Jadwin Gym Saturday at 6 p.m.
"I'm excited to see us tomorrow night, because Cornell got us up there," Mitch Henderson, the Franklin C. Cappon-Edward G. Green '40 head coach of Princeton basketball, said. "It hurt. We're happy to be home and we're hoping to play well."