WORCESTER, Mass. – Harvard junior guard Christine Clark posted 25 points, six rebounds and three assists to help propel the Crimson to an 80-62 victory over Holy Cross at the Hart Center on Tuesday evening. Holy Cross slips to 1-3 on the season, while Harvard improves to 3-1.
Both teams battled back-and-forth to begin the game as Holy Cross held the 13-12 edge at the 11:07 mark of the first half. Crusaders junior forward Christine Ganser (Needham, Mass.) scored five points during the early stretch including the three-pointer to give Holy cross the one-point lead. However, Harvard would embark on a 13-2 scoring run over the next three minutes to gain the 25-15 margin at the 8:08 mark of the first. Over the final minutes of the first half, Harvard would push the lead to as high as 13 points (twice), before the Crimson entered the intermission with the 45-33 lead.
Harvard kept pouring on the points in the second half as they began the stanza on a 13-7 run over the first six minutes to hold a 58-40 lead. Ganser and sophomore forward Emily Parker (Johnston, Iowa) scored four straight points to cut the score to 58-44, but the Crimson answered with back-to-back buckets to push the cushion back to 18 (62-44) at the 11:06 mark. Harvard would widen the gap to their biggest lead of 22 points (75-53) with 5:57 left on the clock, before Ganser and junior guard Alex Smith (Delren, N.J.) connected on two treys in a row, less than a minute apart, to cut the deficit to 75-59. The Crimson's defense held off the late Crusader charge as they outscored Holy Cross, 5-3, over the final 5:18 of the contest.
Ganser led the Crusaders with a season-high 17 points and six rebounds while dishing out a pair of helpers. She also connected on two-of-five from behind the arc. Smith finished with 14 points, three rebounds and four assists, while Parker scored 12 and collected five caroms. Junior Brisje Malone (Springfield, Mass.) gathered a team-best seven rebounds to go along with four points and a game-high five assists.
Harvard shot 50.0 percent for the game (31-of-62), while the Crusaders converted on 39.0 percent of their shot attempts (23-of-59). Holy Cross held statistical advantages in rebounds (37-32), second chance points (16-6), and assists (18-17), while Harvard led in points off turnovers (20-10) and bench points (32-6).
Holy Cross will have the next few days off for the Thanksgiving break before returning to action on Sunday, November 25, as it will take on UMass at 2:00 p.m.