Notice to all the superstitious on campus: If you want to experience deja vu, try rooting for the Harvard men's basketball team. UNH 73 Harvard 64
The Crimson's 73-64 loss last night to New Hampshire was another in a long line of seemingly identical losses: close throughout, with Harvard making it exciting--but then falling short in the end.
Unfortunately, yesterday's defeat at Briggs Cage was no mystical event. Despite 24 points from forward Kyle Snowden and 11 from Mike Gilmore, Harvard dropped its tenth straight contest to fall to 3-13 for the year.
New Hampshire, which moved to 11-7 for the season, got 35 points from guard Matt Alosa, 27 in the second half.
"He's one of the finest perimeter players we'll see, and he was hitting from all over, especially when we got close in the second half," Harvard Coach Frank Sullivan said.
That Harvard even had a chance to win this game was a minor miracle. After an ugly first half in which the Crimson shot 29 percent from the field and showed the effects of the exam period layoff, UNH led, 30-19.
"We had a couple of good practices coming into the game, but once we got out there, [the layoff] definitely hurt us," Gilmore said. "The games are just a lot more intense, with more defensive pressure."
After staking an early 7-5 lead, New Hampshire went on a 16-2 run and threatened to turn the game into a rout before Snowden scored four baskets in the half's closing minutes.
"Kyle really did a good job tonight working inside and elevating for some rebounds," Sullivan said. "I think the break might have helped him by giving him a chance to rest."
At the start of the second half, with guard Dan Morris (seven assists) leading the way, Harvard slowly climbed back into the game.
The Crimson pulled to within 41-40 with 12:09 left and then took its first lead, 53-52, at the 5:17 mark.
Hope? Excitement? A Harvard triumph?
Nope. New Hampshire calmly reeled off 11 straight points to seal the game and send Harvard down a familiar road.
Would you believe that in last year's game with New Hampshire, Harvard trailed by 12 at the half (it was 11 last night), rallied to take a 53-52 lead, and then ended up losing by nine?
It happened--last year, and last night. And similar things have been happening throughout the Crimson's current 10-game slide.