Cambridge, MA. – Harvard’s Temi Fagbenle recorded 15 points and 15 rebounds as Hofstra fell to the Crimson, 60-41, in a non-conference matchup on Saturday afternoon at Lavietes Pavilion.
Senior guard Annie Payton paced the Pride with 14 points and freshman forward Elo Edeferioka grabbed seven rebounds and netted six points. But Hofstra fell to 4-5 overall and is now 3-6 in the all-time series against Harvard. The Crimson improved to 8-3 and moved to 4-0 at home this season in the historic building that opened in 1926.
Erin McDonnell added 17 points and AnnMarie Healy scored 10 points and totaled nine rebounds for Harvard, which led wire-to-wire. Sophomore guard Asia Jackson contributed five points off the bench for the Pride.
Payton scored in double figures for the fifth time this season and the 19th time in her career. Harvard entered the game averaging slightly more than 77 points, though the Pride held the Crimson to a season-low point total. It marked just the second time an opponent prevented Harvard from cracking the 70-point plateau.
Hofstra made a comeback bid in the second half when Edeferioka’s short-range jumper with 15:01 left cut Hofstra’s deficit to 35-26. Harvard responded with a 15-1 run to extend its lead to 50-27 lead capped by Healey’s layup with 9:23 remaining.
The Crimson scored five points off offensive rebounds in the final minute to take a 32-15 halftime lead over Hofstra. Fagbenle and McDonnell combined for 20 of those points at the break as neither team cracked 35 percent shooting from the field before heading to the locker room.
Fagbenle posted a double-double in the first half alone with 11 points and 14 rebounds as the Crimson crafted a 32-16 edge on the glass through the opening 20 minutes.
Havard surged to a 12-2 game-opening run as Hofstra missed 13 of its first 14 shots. But the Pride used strong perimeter defense to force Harvard into missing its first five three-pointers, though the Crimson extended its lead to 22-6 late in the period.
Jackson gave Hofstra a boost off the bench when she drilled a three-pointer and made a jumper after a defensive stop to move within 24-13. Jackson led Hofstra at the break with five points in just eight minutes.
Harvard regained momentum when Jasmine Evans connected on a three-pointer off an offensive rebound. Fagbenle’s high arching jumper off another offensive board beat the buzzer and established the 17-point advantage.
Hofstra will break for the holidays before returning to action on Dec. 30 at Central Connecticut State in the final contest of the calendar year. Tipoff is slated for noon in the Monday contest.