CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Opening its 2019-20 campaign on the road, the Harvard women's basketball team (0-0, 0-0 Ivy League) will head to DeKalb, Ill. to take on Northern Illinois in the programs' first ever meeting this Tuesday, Nov. 5. Tip-off time is slated for 11 a.m. The Crimson then returns to Cambridge for its home opener against California on Friday, Nov. 8 at 7 p.m. Both contests will be broadcast on ESPN+.
What to Know
- Harvard finished its 2018-19 season with a 17-13 overall record, reaching the second round of the WNIT for the fifth time in program history. The appearance marked the ninth over the last 11 years in the tournament for the Crimson and the program's 15th postseason appearance, the most of any Ivy League team. Additionally, Harvard hosted the first two rounds for the first time in program history.
- Harvard will return 10 letterwinners this year, including co-captains senior Mackenzie Barta and junior Rachel Levy, and five of its top eight scorers from last year. The Crimson welcomes five newcomers to its roster, including Gabby Donaldson, Naomi-Grace Jennings, Gracie Martin, Lola Mullaney, Sara Park and Annie Stritzel.
- The Crimson was selected third in the Ivy League Preseason Media Poll. Harvard has finished in the top three of the Ivy League standings every year since the 2006-07 campaign. Earning 95 votes in the preseason poll, the Crimson narrowly trailed Penn and Princeton who tied for first.
- Harvard is 20-25 all-time in season openers and 17-20 under head coach Kathy Delaney-Smith.
- The Crimson and Huskies will meet for the first time in program history this weekend, while the Crimson and the Golden Bears are tied 1-1 in its all-time series after Harvard upset then No. 14 California last season, marking its first win over a ranked opponent since its 1998 upset over No. 1 Stanford in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.
Leading the Way
The Friends of Harvard Women's Basketball Head Coach Kathy Delaney-Smith returns for her 38th season at the helm of the program after leading the Crimson to its fourth-straight, and ninth in the last 11 years, WNIT appearance last season. The winningest coach in Ivy League basketball history with 602 career victories, head coach Kathy Delaney-Smith passed former Princeton head coach Pete Carril (514) for most wins by an Ancient Eight coach on either the men's or women's side during the 2013-14 season.
Harvard will host Siena in a short turnaround on Tuesday, Nov. 12 at 7 p.m. at Lavietes Pavilion, before hitting the road to face La Salle on Friday, Nov. 15 and Rutgers on Sunday, Nov. 17.