Men’s Hoop: Vermont Opens 2018 with 62-56 Win at Harvard

Courtesy Vermont Sports Information

CAMBRIDGE, MA. – The UVM men’s basketball team welcomed the 2018 calendar year with a 62-56 win at Harvard on Tuesday night. Vermont improves to 9-5 overall while Harvard falls to 5-9 on the year.

The Cats recorded their sixth game with 10-plus three-pointers as the team shot 10-for-18 from long distance. On the defensive end, the Green and Gold held the Crimson to 8-of-22 shooting from beyond the arc, including 1-of-9 in the second half.

Payton Henson registered a team-high 17 points with a pair of rebounds, steals, and assists. Drew Urquhart and Trae Bell-Haynes followed with 11 points apiece. Urquhart made three triples, gathered two rebounds, and dished out two assists. Bell-Haynes held a share of the team high with five rebounds and also handed out a pair of assists. Ernie Duncan added nine points, all from downtown, and collected five rebounds.

Harvard’s Chris Lewis scored 14 points on 6-of-8 shooting with four rebounds and blocks. Seth Towns was the second Crimson player in double figures with 13 points and tallied five boards.

The Crimson jumped out to a 7-2 lead through the opening three minutes and forced the Catamounts to play catch-up. With 7:44 remaining in the period, Urquhart sank a triple from the top the arc and gave UVM an 18-16 lead, its first since scoring the first bucket of the game.

After Harvard tied the score on its next trip down the floor, Henson hit a jumper and Duncan connected from downtown as the Cats held a 23-18 advantage with five minutes left in the period. The Crimson fought back and retook the lead in the final two minutes, but Henson drained a fade away jumper with five ticks left on the clock at whittled the deficit to 31-30 at the break.

In the second half, the two rivals kept the score within a one-possession game until the eight-minute media timeout. UVM used back-to-back long balls from Duncan and Urquhart to build a seven-point lead at the 7:29 mark. Harvard closed the gap with a 12-6 run and drew within 57-56 with 48 seconds left after Towns put back an offensive rebound.

Henson put the game away for the Catamounts with a two-handed slam and made the ensuing free throw after getting fouled on the dunk with 22 seconds remaining in the clock.

With the win, the Cats Win, Community Wins campaign and Vermont Mutual have donated another $100 to the Boys and Girls Club of Burlington, bringing this year’s total to 60 wins and $6,000 donated.

Vermont will open America East play at UMass Lowell on Thursday (Jan. 4). The opening tip is set for 7 p.m. Tickets are available at Fans can watch the conference opener on ESPN3 and the watchESPN app by logging in with your television provider. All Vermont regular season games can be heard on 101.3 ESPN FM and online at with Sam Hyman on the call.