Last time out Harvard, coming off a disappointing non-conference slate, opened Ivy League play with a nail-biting victory at Dartmouth on Jan. 6.
Moving in the right direction, the Crimson looked to continue its winning ways with back-to-back road games against Yale and Brown.
The question remained, however, would Harvard be able to shake off 20 days of rust to secure all-important Ancient Eight victories?
Against Yale, the Crimson (4-12, 2-1 Ivy) managed to hold its own against a team that had played two games during the break.
The tough, physical encounter stayed tight into the final minutes when the Bulldogs finally pulled away to a 61-53 win.
With cobwebs finally gone, Harvard got its groove back in Providence, R.I., utilizing an impressive run in the second stanza to drop the Bears, 73-42.
The Crimson travels to New York this weekend to match up against Columbia and Cornell.
HARVARD 73, BROWN 42
After suffering its first Ivy defeat Friday, Harvard bounced back against Brown to claim its second league victory.
The Crimson pulled away with a 25-7 run in the second half, going up by as many as 35 in the frame.
The two teams were only tied once, 2-2, with 18:43 remaining in the first half.
The Crimson took the lead following free throws by sophomore forward Katie Rollins and never looked back.
Tough defense kept the Bears in check while Harvard seemingly scored at will.
Brown managed a dismal 32.7 percent shooting from the field throughout the entire contest compared to 58.3 percent field-goal and 80 percent free-throw shooting for the Crimson.
Sophomore Emily Tay provided the offensive spark for Harvard, leading all players with 21 points and adding six assists and five steals to top it off.
YALE 61, HARVARD 53
In the first of two road games, the Crimson traveled to New Haven on Friday trying to maintain its perfect record in the Ancient Eight.
The game began slowly as both teams attempted to generate offense early in the first period.
The Bulldogs netted the first baskets of the game at the charity stripe to take the lead in a very physical and defensive game.
A total of 37 turnovers were committed by both teams as the two sides jostled for the lead.
Neither could maintain a definitive advantage with nine lead changes occurring in the first half alone.
Yale’s Stephanie Marciano provided the spark necessary to separate the two teams in the second half as she dropped 16 points, all in the second half, to help put away the Crimson.
After Rollins landed a free throw to bring Harvard within two with 51 seconds remaining, the Crimson appeared to have a chance at victory.
But, with 22 seconds left, Marciano landed a three to put the Bulldogs up 57-52 and douse any hopes of a comeback.
“Steph really came up big tonight,” said Yale coach Chris Gobrecht, according to the team’s press release. “[That was] as big a shot as you’re going to see.”
Sophomore Emma Moretzsohn grabbed seven rebounds and notched a career-high three blocks for Harvard.
Junior Lindsay Hallion, followed up her impressive game against Dartmouth with another great all-around performance, tallying 11 points, five rebounds, four assists, and three steals.
Yale’s Erica Davis led all scorers with 19 points.
—Staff writer Vincent R. Oletu can be reached at email@example.com.