PROVIDENCE, R.I., Feb. 28--The Harvard basketball team, paralyzed by Brown's second half zone defense, lost its chance for a first division finish in the Ivy League by dropping a 68-67 decision to the Bruins here tonight. It was Brown's first Ivy League victory of the season.
Harvard led by as much as 11 points on several occasions in the first half, but it had to settle for a 34-34 tie at half time after running into foul trouble and some cold shooting.
Eric Gustavson and Ernie Hardy propelled the Crimson to a 4-pt. advantage with 15 minutes and 12 seconds left in the game. At that point, Brown's two big men, Bob Purvis and Bruce Moger, both had four personal fouls.
The few Harvard supporters sensed victory, but Brown sophomore guard, Russ Tyler, sank two jump shots in a row to tie the game. Then Purvis added a set shot and a free throw to stretch the Brown lead to three points.
Brown opened a small lead, but then Purvis fouled out and Harvard, behind Dale Dover, Mike Janczewski, and Gustavson, managed to tie the game first at 53 apices, then at 55, and then for the last time--on Chris Gallagher's two free throws--at 57.
Hardy picked up his fourth foul and retiring Brown coach Stan put Moger back in the game. The 6-6 senior scored seven straight points to put Brown ahead 64-57 with three minutes left.
Jay Noble's jump shot and Dover's two free throws cut the lead to three, but Bruin sophomores Billy Kahn and Jack Rothemich came up with the clutch plays to hold off the charging Crimson.
Rolling on Floor
Chris Gallagher dropped in a lay-up three seconds from the end, but the clock ran out with the ball rolling on the floor.
As long as Brown stayed in a man-per-man defense, Harvard was in good shaper. But the zone kept the Crimson from penetrating so effectively that Harvard got only 18 shots in the entire 20-minute second period. Brown outshot Harvard 50 per cent to 44 per cent from the floor for the game.
The officiating, as usual, left much to be desired. Referee Richard Arricale called an offensive foul on Dover in the closing minutes to shut off a Harvard surge. Even the Brown fans marvelled at that decision.
Moger led Brown scorers with 18 points. Kahn, Purvis, and Roger Wakefield all scored in double figures. For Harvard, Gallagher, playing for the first time without his contact lenses--he had to wear glasses because he lost the lenses--had 16 points. Mike Janczewski and Dover had 13 apiece, and Gustavson had 12.