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ON CAMPUS A look at the area college sports scene

Friday, January 13, 2012

Yale kicks off Ivy season vs. Brown Saturday

NEW HAVEN — Things got so bad on the injury front recently that the Brown men’s basketball team plucked a couple of bodies from the football tewam to join the squad.
Against the imposing Yale (10-4) frontline they’ll probably need them.
Yale, led by sizzling center Greg Mangano, opens Ivy League play against the Bears Saturday afternoon at 2 p.m. at the Lee Amphitheater. The Bulldogs have won the past three games in the series.
Mangano is coming off a monstrous, 35-point, 22-rebound, performance against undermanned St. Joseph College (L.I.) last game. But don’t let the DIII stats skewer what the senior from Orange has done this year. Mangano is already a three-time Ivy League Player of the Week choice averaging 19.9 ppg and 10.7 rebounds. He scored 26 points and grabbed 15 rebounds against then 10th ranked Florida a week ago and had 20 and 11 against Wake Forest.
Brown coach Jesse Agel knows his team will have its hand full guarding the 6-10 post from Notre Dame-West Haven.
"We don’t have one guy who can go out and get us 22 rebounds," Agel said. "As a group we have to do a better job of rebounding and that will be a key component of whether we can be successful.
"We’ll have to work as a unit to stop him. But last week we were down to seven players and now we’re back to 10 players, all the sickness is over and it’s just down to injuries, so we’re excited about that."
While Brown is just 5-11, the Bears do have a pair of impressive wins on the docket this season. They beat Rhode Island for the first time since 2001 and also beat a strong Central Connecticut State team in early December. Both of those wins came at home and the Bears are still searching for their first road win of the season.
Brown features exciting sophomore guard Sean McGonagill. Also a bit hampered recently buy injuries, McGonagill set Brown’s Pizzitola Center mark for points (39) and field goals in a game (15) in a game against Columbia last season. The outing was even more outstanding considering that McGonagill had facial surgery two days prior and was wearing a protective mask.
"They’ve changed some things recently that they had been doing," Yale coach James Jones said. "McGonagill is still the main cog. He makes them go. Andrew McCarthy has done a real nice job of making perimeter jumpshots and he’s been really active. Those are the main two guys."
McGonagill’s offensive prowess may force Yale to defend him with its phenom stopper Reggie Willhite on Saturday. Willhite has a knack for not only shutting down the oppositions best scorers but virtually eliminating them. This year Willhite has also taking up much more of the offensive slack scoring 12.6 points a game.
And guard Austin Morgan continues to possess the outside stroke scoring 13.0 points and leading the team with 36 3-pointers.
Yale, picked second in the preseason Ivy League poll surely knows how important every league is on the slate and will need focus in Brown which it plays two straight games before Yale hosts Harvard in a titanic clash on Jan. 27
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