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Varsity to Oppose Favored Yale Five In Contest Tonight

By John A. Rava

A Yale quintet, stronger in every essential than the Crimson, will be highly favored tonight to ruin Harvard's six game winning streak and retain its undisputed possession of first place in the league race, in the Payne Whitney Gym.

Wednesday night, at Dartmouth, the Elis grabbed the league lead on a substitute's last minute basket and will certainly be very careful not to lose it against the underdog Crimson.

Yale, with a 9-2 league mark, is now one full game ahead of the Indians (8-3). Tonight, the Indians play host to Princeton, and could tie for the lead if a Dartmouth victory is coupled with a Yale defeat.

Meanwhile, Harvard could move into a fourth place tie with either Columbia or Princeton. Columbia should easily beat Penn, but the Tigers must play the second-place Indians and will be the underdogs. Thus, an upset tonight would probably mean a temporary first division berth for the varsity.

Victory tonight will not be easily achieved, however. Yale has an excellent 15-7 overall mark, which includes four losses to superior Midwestern competition over Christmas vacation. Its only league losses were an early one to Dartmouth and one at Princeton.

The Elis boast the best scoring duo in the league in Johnny Lee, a 6-2 forward who last year led the loop in scoring with a 24.1 average, and is again hitting over 20 a game this year, and Larry Downs. Downs, a 6-5 sophomore, surprised everyone at the beginning of the season by constantly outscoring Lee, but has cooled off recently to about an 18 point average.

This pair can hit well from inside and out, and will force Harvard's pressing zone to its utmost. Captain Ed Robinson (6-3) is leading the league in rebounds, and presents a scoring threat of his own. The two guards, George Thompson and Tom Sargeant, are capable ball handlers and play makers.

In fact, what Harvard coach Floyd Wilson fears more than anything else is the polish of this Yale five. It will not make the same mistakes that the slower, rougher Princeton five made. Its big men, Lee, Downs, and Robinson, are tricky and smooth, versatile ball players, and will be hard to stop.

The Crimson, of course, is not without assets of its own. It has played inspired, hustling ball in its recent six game streak, and has more confidence in itself than it has had for years.

Individually, while no Crimson player can match the feats of the three big Yalies, there are still some high spots. George Harrington, a 5-7 guard, has emerged as the top individual player, and is almost certain to wrest the team scoring leadership away from Dick Woolston before the season ends.

He has been the big gun in all six consecutive victories, and continually hits for points when they are most needed. Woolston has been a steady unspectacular player who has been of tremendous help off the backboards and who has scored consistently in double figures.

Harvard's reserves have improved tremendously of late, particularly Griff McClellan, a 6-8 sophomore center, who has shows much more aggressiveness under the boards, and has helped rest Canty. Dick Hurley has returned to his early from, and filled in well for either Harrington, Hastings or Barnett.

Captain Ike Canty has also averaged in double figures and is second to Woolston in rebounding. Bob Barnett and Bob Hastings have added the ball control and play making needed to make a wellbalanced team. Hastings occasionally is hot, and may score 20 points at any specific time.

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