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Big Second Half Lifts Yale To 11th Straight Victory, 75-65 Over Dartmouth

Makai Mason (Keenan Hairston photo)
Makai Mason (Keenan Hairston photo)

Bulldogs Improve To 7-0 In Ivy Play

HANOVER, N.H.  – Yale hasn't trailed too often at halftime this season, but that was the scenario the Bulldogs faced Friday at Dartmouth. The response was quite impressive.

Makai Mason scored 20 of his team-high 25 points after the intermission, and Justin Sears finished with 21 points, 13 rebounds and three blocks in the game as Yale rallied for a 75-65 victory over the Big Green at Leede Arena.

The Bulldogs only trailed 28-27 at halftime but found themselves down nine, 41-32, early in the second half. Yale then outscored Dartmouth 43-24 over the final 16:32.

"We just had to relax, take a deep breath and be aggressive," said Sears, who posted his third double-double of the season. "We got a few stops and got it rolling."

After struggling from the field in the first half, the Bulldogs shot 62.5 percent (15-of-24) in the final 20 minutes.

Nobody epitomized that more than Mason, who missed all seven of his shots in the first half but was 6-of-9 the rest of the way.

"I got to the free throw line, which helped me a little bit," he said. "My teammates had confidence in me to keep shooting."

Mason played 39 minutes in the game and had four rebounds, two assists and a steal to go along with his 25 points.

"He stayed confident," said James Jones, The Joel E. Smilow, Class of 1954 Head Coach of the Bulldogs. "I just told him to keep shooting."

Yale (16-5, 7-0 Ivy) took its first lead of the second half, 51-50, on a pair of Sears free throws with 8:38 left. The final tie of the night was at 52 before a Mason three-pointer started a 12-2 run, that was capped by another Mason trey.

The Big Green (7-14, 1-6 Ivy) got as close at six, but the Bulldogs made seven free throws in the final 1:05 to seal the victory.

"Our guys were gritty and fought the entire game," Jones said. "We found a way to get it done."

There were a number of contributors. Brandon Sherrod finished with 14 points and seven rebounds, Anthony Dallier scored 10 points, and Khaliq Ghani added five points and six rebounds off the bench.

Evan Boudreaux scored 21 points and grabbed 10 rebounds to lead the Big Green. Miles Wright had 15 points, and Connor Boehm scored 12.

The Bulldogs have won 11 straight games, their longest winning streak since the 1948-49 team won 12 in a row. The school record winning streak is 13 set in 1906-07.

More importantly Yale remains perfect in Ivy play and maintains its one-game lead over Columbia (6-1). Princeton (5-1) also has only one league loss.

NOTES: The Bulldogs were trailing at halftime for only the fourth time this season and it was their first win when behind at the break… Dartmouth did a surprisingly good job staying with Yale on the glass. The Bulldogs, who entered the game leading the nation in rebounding margin, had only a 36-33 edge in rebounds… Seven of Sears' 13 rebounds came on the offensive end… Due to a jersey snafu, Sherrod wore No. 20 in the game… Yale remains one of only three teams undefeated in conference play, joining Stony Brook (12-0, America East) and Stephen F Austin (11-0, Southland)… The Bulldogs play at Harvard on Saturday. The Crimson knocked off Brown on Friday night. Tip is slated for 7 p.m. The game can be seen on the Ivy League Digital Network and will be televised on NESN in New England.



Report filed by Tim Bennett (, Yale Sports Publicity