Providence, R.I. – Senior All-Ivy guard Sean McGonagill scored 29 points with sizzling 7-of-9 shooting from beyond the three point arc, to lead Brown to a 73-56 Ivy League win over Yale Saturday afternoon at the Pizzitola Sports Center. The win gives Brown (9-7, 1-1 Ivy) a series split with the Bulldogs (7-9, 1-1 Ivy).
Brown led 38-25 at the half, but Yale got back in the game from the free throw line with a huge disparity in the number of free throws shot (38-20). The Bulldogs cut Brown's lead to five points, 52-47, following two free throws by Justin Spears with 8:03 left in the game.
McGonagill immediately took over the game, scoring 11 points, including a four-point play, in a 13-3 Brown run that enabled the Bears to put the game away, 65-50, with 4:00 left in the game.
"I could say that we defended for 40-minutes and played tough defense, and that's true, but the difference was that we had Sean McGonagill and they didn't," said Brown head coach Mike Martin. "He was absolutely outstanding and hit some incredible shots. I think he's the best player in the league."
McGonagill was in the zone all day, connecting on 8-of-11 field goals and 6-of-7 free throws. His seven treys are a career high and rank eighth in the Brown record book. He also had three rebounds and three assists.
"Our guys played with great energy," said McGonagill, "Tavon Blackmon found guys in transition and our big men rebounded the basketball."
Bears' junior forward Rafael Maia turned in a balanced performance, scoring seven points, grabbing a game high eight rebounds and handing out a career high five assists. Freshman Tavon Blackmon finished with seven points and seven assists for the Bears.
Sears led the Bulldogs with 17 points on 5-of-10 shooting from the field, including 7-of-10 from the free throw line. Javier Duren scored 13 points for the Bulldogs, while Armani Cotton added 10 points.
Overall, Yale connected on 19-of-38 free throws, while Brown converted 10-of-20 shots from the charity stripe. The Bears out-rebounded the Bulldogs by a 40-30 margin.
McGonagill came out of the gate on fire, connecting on three consecutive treys to give the Bears an early 18-10 lead. The Bears later extended their lead to 16 points, 27-11, on a lay-up by freshman Leland King with 8:43 left in the opening half.
Brown's largest first half lead came at the 5:10 mark, 31-13, when Blackmon converted a lay-up.
A late Yale surge, including a layup by Javier Duran with seven seconds left in the half, cut Brown's halftime lead to 38-25.
The Bulldogs battled back to cut Brown's lead to seven points, 46-39, at the 13:48 mark of the second half, but Brown quickly took control on treys on Maia and McGonagill to go back up by 13 points, 52-39, with 11 minutes remaining.
Brown hosts its first full Ivy League weekend, facing Cornell on Friday, January 31 (7pm) and Columbia on Saturday, February 1 (6pm) at the Pizzitola Sports Center.