Sarah Halejian Scores Game-High 26 Points, Yale Wins 73-68
NEW HAVEN, CONN. - In a game which neither team held a lead larger than six points, Yale managed to fend off Columbia, 73-68, on Saturday night at John J. Lee Amphitheater. The Bulldogs took advantage of 17 offensive rebounds and scored 21 points off of turnovers to key the win and complete a sweep of the weekend's contests.
Sarah Halejian scored 26 points to lead all scorers, including a run of 10 straight points for the Bulldogs in the pivotal final minutes. Janna Graf added 12 points, while Meghan McIntyre scored nine points off the bench. Amanda Tyson grabbed a game-high seven rebounds, including five on the offensive glass as Yale held an 11-2 edge in second-chance points.
Halejian added six assists, while Whitney Wyckoff added four assists as the Bulldogs' starting backcourt committed just two turnovers. The Yale bench was impressive, contributing 24 points on the night, along with 15 rebounds.
With the win, Yale improves to 12-12 overall and 6-4 in the Ivy League. Columbia slips to 6-18 overall and 3-7 in the Ivy League.
Miwa Tachibana led Columbia with 22 points, while Carolyn Gallagher and Taylor Ward added 16 and 12 points, respectively. The Lions shot 51.0 percent from the field and held a narrow 38-36 rebounding margin, but could not overcome 17 turnovers.
Halejian came right back with five straight points for Yale and her three-pointer with 17:34 to play put the Bulldogs ahead for good at 44-41.
After a jumper by the Lions' Gallagher trimmed the Yale lead to a point, Wyckoff hit a three-pointer and Halejian converted a layup to give the Bulldogs the largest lead of the night at 49-43.
The Lions, who would get within a point on five occasions in the period, got within49-48 on a Taylor Ward three-pointer, but Yale would again push the lead back to five points with 11:24 remaining.
Halejian led the way after Columbia again closed within a point with 5:01 to play. The junior guard, who scored 10 straight for the Bulldogs during this stretch, responded with three-pointers to answer each of the Lions' next two field goals and keep Yale in front.
Halejian hit two foul shots with 26 seconds to play, and after blocking a three-point attempt on the defensive end, Wyckoff added another foul shot with eight seconds remaining to seal the win.
Columbia built a 15-10 lead in the first half, thanks to a 7-2 run capped off by a Taylor Ward three-pointer. The Bulldogs continued to trail for most of the opening period before Graf converted a layup and Halejian scored six straight to give Yale eight unanswered points over the final 2:06 of the half and led to a 37-34 lead at the break.
Yale returns to action next weekend for its final two home games of the season when it hosts Princeton on Friday night and Penn on Saturday.
Report filed by Jeff Mead, Yale Sports Publicity