Men's Basketball Falls at Northeastern, 80-71

McCarthy dished out a career-high nine assists and added eight points (Gil Talbot).

BOSTON – The Harvard men's basketball team rallied late but came up short Wednesday night, falling to Northeastern, 80-71, at Matthews Arena.

Zena Edosomwan once again led the charge for Harvard (2-5) with 18 points on 9-of-12 shooting, seven rebounds and four assists. Patrick Steeves and Weisner Perez both set career-highs with 13 points off the bench, with Steeves also contributing five rebounds and three assists. Tommy McCarthy totaled eight points and dished out a career-best nine assists.

Harvard shot a season-high 55.4 percent (31-56) and assisted on 25 of 31 makes, matching the highest number of assists for a Harvard squad under Tommy Amaker, The Thomas G. Stemberg '71 Family Endowed Coach for Harvard Men's Basketball. The Crimson defense, meanwhile, limited Northeastern (6-1) to a 43.1 percent (28-65) clip but allowed 10 3-pointers as the Huskies shot 14-of-17 at the line. Quincy Ford led the way for Northeastern, turning in a 22-point, 10prebound performance.

Harvard continues its road swing on Saturday, Dec. 5 as it travels to No. 4/6 Kansas. The game can be seen live on ESPN2 beginning at 3:15 p.m.

The teams traded the lead eight times through the first 7:40 of play after baskets by Agunwa Okolie and Edosomwan gave Harvard an initial 4-0 lead. The Crimson twice went in front off 3-pointers from McCarthy and Corbin Miller, and a pair of Steeves layups gave Harvard a 20-17 edge.

Northeastern tied the score twice before Perez's triple ignited a 10-2 run to give Harvard a 36-27 margin. Steeves scored five straight points during the stretch, including a flashy reverse layup and an NBA-range 3, and Okolie punctuated it with a layup in transition.

The Huskies came back with an 8-0 stretch of their own, however, and pulled within 38-36 off Ford's 3. Perez answered with four straight points to help keep the lead, but the hosts closed the half with nine unanswered points to take a 46-42 lead.

Steeves and Perez each scored 11 points before the break as the Crimson combined to shoot 62.1 percent (18-29) from the field. Northeastern, meanwhile, shot an even 50.0 percent (15-30) and was 11-of-13 at the line.

Harvard answered a quick run by the Huskies with baskets by Evan Cummins and McCarthy, but Northeastern kept the pressure on and pushed its lead to 64-54 on Ford's third 3 of the night. The Huskies outscored the Crimson 11-4 from that point as the lead reached 17, 75-58.

A pair of Edosomwan dunks and a McCarthy three-ball pulled Harvard back to within 75-65, and following a Cummins bucket the score stood at 80-69 with 1:31 to play. Harvard was unable to make a late run at the lead, however, and Northeastern dribbled out the clock with the 80-71 victory.

Game Notes: Harvard's 25 assists tied the most-ever by a Crimson squad under Tommy Amaker, The Thomas G. Stemberg '71 Family Endowed Coach for Harvard Men's Basketball (vs. Brown, Feb. 26, 2010) … Harvard's 44 points in the paint tied the 10th most under Tommy Amaker, The Thomas G. Stemberg '71 Family Endowed Coach for Harvard Men's Basketball  … Zena Edosomwan (18 pts., 7 rebs.) led Harvard in scoring for the third and in rebounding for the fourth time … Patrick Steeves and Weisner Perez each set new career-highs with 13 points … Harvard has made at least five 3-pointers in all seven games this season … Corbin Miller has made at least one 3-pointer in 10 straight games dating back to last season … Corey Johnson has made at least one 3-pointer in all seven games to begin his career.