Yale Opens Ivy Season with Win at Brown

Amanda Tyson. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)
Amanda Tyson. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)

Tyson's Clutch Second-Half Performance Fuels Bulldogs' Come-From-Behind Win


NEW HAVEN, Conn. — The Yale University women's basketball team entered Ivy League play with an 0-5 record when trailing at halftime. On Friday in the Ivy League opener at Brown, the Bulldogs needed help from an unexpected source to turn things around in a second-half rally that secured the road victory.

Sophomore guard Amanda Tyson came off the bench to record 10 of her 12 points and seven of her game-high eight rebounds in the second half to help lift Yale to a 75-65 win over Brown at the Pizzitola Sports Center Friday night.

Tyson's eight rebounds included seven on the offensive glass. The 12 points, eight rebounds and seven offensive rebounds are all new career-high marks for Tyson. She also set new career-high marks in field goals made (4), free throws made (4) and free throws attempted (5).

"Amanda Tyson totally gets the game ball in this one," said Chris Gobrecht, the Joel E. Smilow, Class of 1954, Head Coach of Women's Basketball. "She was the one that came in and made things happen. She got on the offensive glass. She created some turnovers. She made some big buckets. We have felt all along that she is capable of that. She looks really good in practice so it didn't surprise me that she came around and finally had a game that shows the player that we keep seeing in practice."

Junior guard Megan Vasquez scored a game-high 23 points to lead the Bulldogs (9-6, 1-0 Ivy League), who improve to 4-0 in 2012. It was the fifth 20-point outing of the season for Vasquez, who scored 20 or more points five times previously in her Yale career, all coming last season.

In her first game following her recognition as the Ivy League's Rookie of the Week, freshman guard Sarah Halejian scored a career-high 18 points on 5-of-10 shooting, 6-of-6 from the free-throw line, to go with three steals.

Yale opened up a 22-11 lead in the first half, but Brown outscored Yale 21-9 over the final 11:21 of the first half to go into the locker room with a 32-31 halftime lead. It was the sixth time this season that Yale had trailed at halftime.

"I thought that Brown totally dictated the tempo in the first half," Gobrecht said. "Even when we had the lead, it wasn't our tempo. It was still very much favoring them, so I didn't feel very good about that lead and sure enough it didn't hold up. I thought we worked a lot harder to create more things in the second half. We attacked a little bit better and we just forced the action. Brown likes to play at their tempo, and if you let them play at their tempo, they are going to be successful."

Brown's hold on the game didn't end at halftime. While the Bulldogs made several attempts to climb back on top, they only managed to tie the game twice in the opening 10 minutes of the half. Every time Yale made its push, Brown would push back and reclaim its lead.

The Bears led 47-42 with 11:37 left when the Bulldogs pushed one final time and took control for good. Yale used a 10-0 run to pull ahead 52-47 with 9:21 left. Brown responded with a 3-pointer from Sheila Dixon and a free throw from Jordin Juker to pull within a point at 52-51 with 7:34 left, but Tyson scored four points on a pair of free throws and a layup to help Yale extend its lead to 58-51.

Brown made one last attempt to climb back into the game. Dixon scored on a jumper and a layup and Aileen Daniels sank a jumper in between Dixon's baskets to account for a 6-0 Brown run that cut Yale's lead back to a single point, 58-57, with 4:08 left, but that was as close as Brown would get.

Behind a 3-pointer, a jumper and a pair of free throws from Halejian, the Bulldogs used a 10-4 run to open up a 68-61 lead with 1:16 left that secured Yale's first win of the Ivy League season.

Dixon scored 20 points to lead Brown, which saw its six-game winning streak end. Lauren Clarke scored 13 points, while Hannah Passafuime added 12 points.

Yale outrebounded Brown 43-35, including a whopping 21-6 advantage on the offensive glass. The rebounding advantage allowed Yale to outscore Brown 26-6 on second-chance opportunities. The Bulldogs also scored 23 points off of 17 Brown turnovers.

The two teams will return to the court on Friday, Jan. 20, when Brown visits Yale at John J. Lee Amphitheater at 7 p.m.

"Anytime you get a road win in the Ivy League you're pretty happy. When we play these back-to-backs, we don't let ourselves get too excited about anything because we know we have to turn around and play that same team a week later. I can't remember ever playing Brown when it wasn't really tough. It doesn't matter whose court it is, it is always really tough, so we know we are in for it next weekend too."

Report filed by Jon Erickson Jr., Yale Sports Publicity