The Harvard basketball team warmed up for its important Ivy League clash with Dartmouth on Wednesday with an easy 90-73 thrashing of Tufts at Medford last night.
With all the regulars joining in the party. Harvard jumped out to a crushing 35-9 advantage over the first 12 minutes of the mismatch and then played out the string.
Junior forward Ernie Hardy, gradually gaining varsity experience, continued his outstanding play, sparking the burst with three field goals and two free throws before seven minutes had gone by.
Then Eric Gustavson, the steady 6-3 guard from Athens, Ohio, took over, sinking four buckets--two fast break layups and two bombs--to complement Hardy's inside work. Finally, sophomore forward Mike Janczewski entered the fray as sixth man and scored 11 points in six minutes. At the half, Harvard, thanks to coach Bob Harrison's abundant mercy, led 47-29.
Tufts made a brief run in the second half behind two juniors, 6-1 Dave Whitley and 5-8 Gerry Dubey. After five minutes of play, the Jumbos had clawed within 15 points at 55-40. As the few faithful Harvard fans nervously checked their laughter, Gustavson put on a personal scoring spree to clinch the verdict.
First, he tallied on a precision fast-break with sophomore standout Dale Dover. Before the crowd had recovered, Dover knocked away a Tufts pass, Janczewski recovered and gunned the ball the length of the court to Gus for another layup.
Tufts shot and missed. Harvard took the rebound and came downcourt. Hardy dribbled to the top of the key and passed to Gustavson cutting across the middle. The senior pivoted and flipped in a ten foot turn around all in one motion. Then Harrison began to clear the bench.
Harvard got strong performances from almost everyone who played. 6-10 senior Paul Waickowski overpowered the not-so-jumbo Jumbos, crashing both backboards and scoring 10 points. Chris Gallagher played a steady game underneath, concentrating on defense--Harvard used a zone for the first time in this reporter's memory--and rebounding.
An encouraging not for Harvard--plagued by bad news most of the year--was the return to action of 6-3 jumper Bobby Johnson. With Johnson and the rest of the team clicking, Harvard will trounce the Indians from New Hampshire on Wednesday.