On Saturday, March 11, No. 4 seed Cornell played No. 1 seed Yale in the 2023 Ivy Madness tournament. After missing the Red’s last game in the regular season, sophomore forward Guy Ragland Jr. was back on the court for the big game. Junior guard Max Watson, who also missed the previous game, did not suit up.
Cornell came out firing on all cylinders. After forcing a turnover on the Bulldogs’ opening possession, junior guard Chris Manon put the Red on the board with a layup. On the team’s next possession, sophomore guard Nazir Williams knocked down a three-pointer, giving Cornell an early 5-0 lead.
Yale’s Bez Mbeng proceeded to score the next five points, quickly tying the game at five points apiece with 16:19 remaining in the first half.
It was the Bulldogs’ three point shooting that helped Yale gain some ground on the Red. Throughout the half, Yale converted on five of its eight attempts from behind the arc.
With 3:32 remaining in the half, Yale led, 32-23. Cornell was able to cut into this lead courtesy of three-pointers from senior guard Greg Dolan and Ragland Jr. Going into halftime, the Red trailed by a score of 34-31.
Despite a scoring surge by Cornell in the final minutes of the first half, it was Yale that set the tone for the second half. In just over two minutes, the Bulldogs scored 12 unanswered points to extend its lead to 15.
The Red scored the game’s next four points to cut its deficit to 11. That was the closest the Red got for the remainder of the game — Cornell trailed by as much as 25 points during the second half.
Yale won by a final score of 80-60, advancing to the Ivy Madness championship game against Princeton.
Cornell has now participated in the Ivy Madness tournament for two consecutive seasons and will look to make it back again during the 2023-2024 season.