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Penn's Hassan Duncombe is not well-liked around Ivy League men's basketball circles because of his fiery temper and feisty disposition.
But after last night, he'll find himself much better liked by teams across the league. Except for the Princeton Tigers.
The Quaker center tipped in a missed free throw at the buzzer to send league leader Princeton to defeat, 51-50, in front of 4480 fans last night at the Palestra.
The loss dropped the Tigers (13-5 overall, 4-2 Ivy) into a three-way tie for first place with Harvard and Dartmouth. With the win, the Quakers (8-10, 3-3) pulled into a three-way tie for fourth place with Yale and Brown, just one game behind the pace-setters.
The key to the Penn win was rebounding, with the Quakers holding a 30-19 advantage over the smaller Tigers. Duncombe did most of the damage, snaring nine rebounds--seven on the offensive boards--en route to a 17-point effort. Forward Jerry Simon cleared the defensive boards with eight. Sophomore guard Paul Chambers, a walk-on one year ago, added 13 points to Penn's effort.
Princeton led, 50-49, with six seconds remaining as George Leftwich missed the second shot of a one-and-one. Penn's Paul Chambers--fouled with just one second remaining--missed the free throw, but Duncombe tapped in the goal to win.
After Penn took a 26-24 halftime edge, neither team could build more than a four-point lead in the second half.
A driving layup by Chambers gave Penn a 46-45 lead with 2:12 to go but Sean Jackson scored for Princeton with 89 seconds left.
Tyrone Gilliams made two foul shots for Penn, but Kit Mueller responded with a basket to give Princeton a 49-48 lead with 39 seconds remaining. A free throw by Gilliams with 10 seconds to go tied the score, 49-49.
For the Tigers, Matt Eastwick's 15 points and Mueller's 14 points sparked the close-but-no-cigar effort, but Jackson was limited to eight points on 3-for-9 shooting.
Quakers, 51-50 in Philadelphia Princeton 24-26--50 Penn 26-25--51
PRINCETON (50): Matt Henshon 0-1 0-0 0; Matt Eastwick 5-6 4-7 15; Kit Mueller 6-10 2-2 14; Sean Jackson 3-9 0-0 8; Craig Leftwich 0-3 1-2 1; Matt Lapin 4-7 0-0 12; Jerry Doyle 0-0 0-0 0.
Totals: 18-37 7-11 50
PENN (51): Jerry Simon 1-6 0-0 3; Ray Marshall 4-6 0-0 8; Hassan Duncombe 8-15 1-1 17; Tyrone Gilliams 2-6 6-8 10; Paul Chambers 4-8 4-7 13; Ken Graf 0-1 0-0 0; Sean Dineen 0-0 0-0 0.
Totals: 19-42 11-16 51
Three-pointers: Lapin 4, Jackson 2, Eastwick; Simon, Chambers. Fouled Out: Eastwick. Rebounds: Princeton 19 (Eastwick 7); Penn 30 (Duncombe 9). Assists: Princeton 13 (Mueller, Leftwich, Lapin 3); Penn 10 (Simon 4). Steals: Princeton 4 (Eastwick, Mueller, Leftwich, Lapin); Penn 3 (Simon 2). Blocks: Princeton 0; Penn 1 (Duncombe). Total Fouls: Princeton 18; Penn 12. Turnovers: Princeton 7; Penn 6.
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