For the first seven minutes of the Harvard women' basketball game against Tufts on Saturday night, the Crimson took out all the frustrations of the past 50 days.
Winless since December 13, 1984, the Cagers stormed out to a 20-0 lead over the helpless Jumbos on their way to a 85-66 victory before 150 fans at Briggs Athletic Center.
"We were certainly in need of a win," said Crimson Coach Kathy Delaney Smith, whose squad raised in need of a win" said Crimson Coach Kathy Delaney Smith Whose squad ILLEGIBLE> season mark to 7-9. "It was a good win."
Harvard attained its early bulge by the same method it rode all night to victory: a patient offense and lightsout shooting.
The hosts shot nearly 80 percent from the field in those first seven minutes on their way to a sizzling 68 percent first-hall performance.
For the game, the unit shot an all time record 62.5 percent, the first time in Harvard women's hoop history that the team has been over 60 percent for an entire game.
The only problem the Cantabs faced in the first half was Tufts center Kathy Amoroso. Amoroso equaled here jersey number with 21 first-half points (29 for the night), and was generally unstoppable in the paint.
Harvard held a 43-34 lead at halftime, and made the necessary adjustments in the second half to shut Amorous down.
Meanwhile the cagers' offense was flowing smoothly. Eight Crimson players registered assists in a new-style offense that emphasized ball control and passing.
The team effort was not without its individual stars, Junior Co-Captain Anna Collins equaled her career high with 20 points on 9-for-10 shooting, and Trisha Brown added 20 in another career-best performance.
Tufts never got within 1 points during the second half, as Harvard maintained poise and consistency and coasted to its highest of the season and its tory of 1985.
Delaney Smith was elated by her squad's team effort. "We shot really, really well. The key was offensive patience....We tried to include all five players in the offense," she said.
The coach was especially pleased with Brown, whose previous high tally had been 13.
"We have a lot of scorers, not just one or two," Delaney Smith emphasized, adding, "Trisha is truly capable of that kind of scoring more consistently."
The final month of the campaign features 10 games, eight against Ivy foes. (The Crimson is 1-3 in the league). With a little consistency, Delaney Smith's pre-season goal of a .506 wining percentage for the year is within rea.
"We can definitely play .500, and I would hope for a little bit better," said Collins. "I don't think any of the Ivy teams are better than us."
For a team that has been its own worst enemy thus far, it's merely a matter of settling down and playing, in Collins' words, "our kind of ball game."
Continued hot shooting wouldn't hurt, either.
THE NOTEBOOK: Freshman Barb Keffer had four assists against the Jumbos, and now has 86 on the season--just seven short of the team record...Yardling Sharon Hayes (14 points) and Keffer (13) joined Collins and Brown in double figures.