Providence, Rhode Island - While most conferences have a post-season tournament to crown its champion, the Ivy League boasts a 14-game regular season playoff, covering eight weeks, to determine its champion and NCAA Tournament qualifier. For Brown, it all starts Friday evening, January 15 in New Haven, as the Bears travel to Yale for the Ivy League opener at Lee Amphitheater, beginning at 7:00 p.m.
Brown (6-11) concluded its non-league schedule with an 88-75 loss at Quinnipiac. Bears’ freshman forward Tucker Halpern scored a career high 26 points, connecting on 6 of 13 treys, while junior forward Peter Sullivan added 20 points.
The 26 points scored by freshman Tucker Halpern are the most points scored by a Brown first year player since Earl Hunt ‘03 registered 27 points against Dartmouth on 2/19/00. Jason Forte ‘04 scored 25 points as a freshman against Harvard on 2/1/02, while Mark MacDonald ’08 netted 25 points as a freshman vs. New Hampshire on 12/8/04.
Yale (6-11) is coming off a 79-48 victory at home over NJIT to wrap-up its non-league schedule.
Senior center and tri-captain Matt Mullery, Brown's leader in scoring, rebounding, assists and blocked shots, injured his ankle four minutes into the Army game and did not return. He didn’t play Monday against Quinnipiac, and status is uncertain for Friday’s game against Yale. Mullery recently became one of Brown’s Top 25 Career Scorers with 931 career points, 24th best in Brown basketball history.
Brown and Yale have met 143 times, dating back to the 1904-1905 season, with the Elis holding a 94-49 series advantage. This marks the fifth straight year that Brown has opened its Ivy season against the Bulldogs. Yale has won the last two meetings after sweeping the Bears in 2008-2009, 70-62 in New Haven and 57-55 in Providence. The two teams split games in each of the previous three seasons. Brown’s last win over the Elis was a 77-68 decision on 1/26/08.
Halpern became the third Brown rookie to earn Ivy League Rookie of the Week honors after scoring a career high 22 points, pulling down seven rebounds, handing out six assists and making three steals in an overtime win over Wagner. He then came back against Army by scoring 13 points, grabbing seven rebounds and dishing out three assists.
The Sullivan brothers, Peter Sullivan ’11 and Matt Sullivan ’13, shot a combined 12 of 12 from the free throw line against Quinnipiac. Older brother, Peter, connected on 8 of 8 free throws, while Matt converted 4 of 4 shots from the charity stripe.
Brown vs. Yale, Round II, will take place next Friday evening, January 22, in Providence, Rhode Island, as the Bears take on the Elis at the Pizzitola Sports Center, starting at 7:00 p.m.