WORCESTER, Mass. – Using a second half surge to pick up its first win of the season on the road, Harvard men's basketball earned a 82-74 victory on Friday night over Holy Cross at the Hart Center. Harvard improves to 4-2, while the Crusaders drop to 0-5.
Senior Bryce Aiken led the charge with 32 points, including five 3-pointers, and became the 35th player in program history to reach 1,000 career points. Sophomore Noah Kirkwood and junior Danilo Djuricic finished with 15 points apiece, while Kirkwood pitched in game-highs of eight rebounds, six assists and three steals.
The Crusaders got off to a fast start, and led by as many as 16 points in the opening frame. Harvard cut an early Holy Cross lead to two, 19-17, after Aiken and Kirkwood scored in the lane, but the home team quickly rebuilt its advantage. Aiken eclipsed 1,000 career points with six seconds to go in the half, knocking down a deep 3-pointer to move Harvard within 12 at the half, 43-31.
It took just 3:31 in the second half for Harvard to erase the Crusaders' advantage, and the Crimson took control for good with 9:30 to go after a corner triple from senior Robert Baker. Harvard outscored Holy Cross in the second half, 51-31, to earn its fourth win of the season.
- Aiken scored a season-high 32 points, for his sixth-career 30-point outing.
- Djuricic tallied a season-high 15 points to go with seven rebounds.
- Kirkwood stuffed the stat sheet with 15 points, season-highs of eight rebounds and six assists, and a career-high three steals.
- The 16-point comeback is Harvard's third-largest under Tommy Amaker, The Thomas G. Stemberg '71 Family Endowed Coach for Harvard Men's Basketball.
- Aiken is the 35th player in program history to reach 1,000 career points, and Harvard's first since Siyani Chambers '16-17.
- Harvard has won each of the last two outings with Holy Cross, and improves to 28-44 in the all-time series.
Harvard heads to Florida to compete in the 2019 Orlando Invitation, with a Thanksgiving battle against Texas A&M set for 1 p.m. The game will be broadcast on ESPN2, and the whole tournament will air on ESPN's family of networks.