PRINCETON, N.J. – The last time Columbia won at Princeton, Meiko Lyles was two years old. On Friday night, Lyles buried a game-winning 3-pointer with 28 seconds left to lift the Lions to a 53-52 victory over the Tigers. Columbia (14-8, 3-2) trailed by as many as 11 points in the first half, but rallied to pick up its first win at Jadwin Gym since Feb. 13, 1993.
The triumph also snapped an eight-game losing Streak to Princeton, dating back to a 58-44 success at Levien Gym on Mar. 6, 2009.
With the Lions down by five and the shot clock winding down, Isaac Cohen rattled in a trey from the top of the key to make it a one possession game with 1:27 on the clock. Princeton’s (12-6, 0-4) T.J. Bray missed a contested three at the other end to give the ball back to the Lions with 49 seconds remaining.
Maodo Lo just missed a pull-up 17-footer the next trip down the floor, but Alex Rosenberg tied up a Tiger player to force a held ball with the arrow favoring Columbia. After a timeout, Lyles curled around the arc, set his feet and nailed the triple from the left wing.
Princeton set up a play for Bray, but Luke Petrasek came up with a huge rejection with 13 ticks left. The Tigers’ Ben Hazel had one last chance, but Cohen contested the shot and Petrasek pulled down the game-sealing rebound with 0.7 seconds left.
Princeton opened the game on a 12-2 run, sparked by eight points by Hans Brase. The Tigers knocked down seven of its first nine shot attempts while Columbia struggled to gain any traction on the offensive end.
Despite the early difficulties, the Lions picked up the defensive intensity, stayed in the ballgame and trailed, 33-25, at the break.
Columbia picked up the intensity to start the second half, using a 9-0 run to even the score, 37-37, at the 14:35 mark. After trading buckets, a Cory Osetkowski layup gave the Lions their first lead of the night, 42-40, just over a minute later.
The game continued to go back-and-forth until a Bray layup put Princeton up 52-47 before the late game theatrics.
Rosenberg posted a game-high 19 points. Lyles made just one basket, but played strong defense on Bray late in the game and grabbed five boards. Cohen finished with five points, six rebounds and five assists.
Bray scored 17 points to lead the Tigers. Brase was held scoreless in the final 20 minutes after recording 13 in the first half.
The Lions complete their road swing at the Palestra when they square off against Penn on Saturday, Feb. 8 at 7 p.m. Catch all of the action on the Ivy League Digital Network.