NOTEBOOK: Visit to Dartmouth Proves Unfriendly
Harvard’s road woes continue in New Hampshire as rookies struggle
HANOVER, N.H.—Despite entering Hanover as the 15-point favorite, the Harvard men’s basketball team struggled to defeat a Dartmouth team predicted to finish in the cellar of the Ivy League.
The Crimson has traditionally run into trouble against its travel partner on the road, falling to the Big Green in four of its previous six trips north of the border.
Last season, Harvard arrived at Dartmouth riding a wave of high expectations following its upset of then-No. 17 Boston College. But despite the Crimson’s momentum, it took a last-second shot from then-freshman Oliver McNally to secure the one-point victory.
Sophomore Keith Wright, who has been a part of the two close victories, is unable to explain his team’s poor performances in New Hampshire.
“I can’t even tell you,” Wright said. “Maybe it’s the rims.”
Harvard’s highly-touted freshman class struggled in its first conference road game, shooting a combined 1-of-10 from deep and turning the ball over six times.
“It was a really intense atmosphere,” freshman Kyle Casey said. “I wasn’t expecting that, to be honest—definitely a learning experience for all of us freshmen.”
The Crimson will have to quickly get over its road woes if it hopes to compete for the Ivy League title. Harvard will embark on its toughest road trip of the season next weekend when the team travels to New York City and Ithaca on back-to-back nights to take on Columbia and Cornell.
Casey arrived at Lavietes Pavilion this fall surrounded by high expectations—he was picked by numerous media outlets to haul in Ivy Rookie of the Year honors—and a tremendous amount of hype.
And so far this season, Casey has lived up to that hype.
Two games after scoring a career-high 27 points against Santa Clara, Casey notched 19 points and 10 rebounds Saturday, recording the first double-double of the season by any Harvard player.
“[I was] just doing what I could to help my team win,” Casey said. “I just happened to get the double-double tonight—could have been anybody.”
Casey not only turned in an efficient performance—he shot 6-of-7 from the field—but also demonstrated his offensive versatility.
The Brimmer and May graduate knocked down three outside jumpers, soared through the air to catch and dunk an alley-oop, and secured a number of crucial defensive rebounds.