Photo Courtesy of the Ivy League

Princeton punches ticket to Big Dance after winning the Ivy League tournament

Princeton faced off against Columbia on Saturday night in the final of the Ivy League Tournament, winning 77-59. The Tigers were the favorite to win as the No. 1 seed and were hoping to get the automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. Guard Kaitlyn Chen led the Tigers to victory with a career-high 30 points.

Both teams started the game strong as the first quarter ended tied at 16. Princeton's second quarter saw a dominant performance, outscoring Columbia by 12 points. Guard Julia Cunningham had seven points in the quarter to add to the Tigers' lead.

The teams went into halftime with Princeton leading 37-25. Chen's 13 points reflected her dominant first-half performance. The Tigers shot 52 percent from the field and 66 percent from three-point range.

After halftime, the Tigers started the second half strong. They scored ten unanswered points in the third quarter. Chen contributed four points in the run, while Abby Meyers and Grace Stone had three points each. The Tigers ended the quarter leading 55-42.

The fourth quarter saw a hungry Columbia looking for the comeback win. Harvard scored 17 points in the quarter, but it wasn't enough as Princeton scored 22 points in the final quarter. Chen and Cunningham performed well on the offensive front to help secure the teams' third consecutive Ivy League Championship. They will enter March Madness on a 17-game winning streak.

Meyers and Cunningham scored 16 points for the Tigers, who forced 20 Columbia turnovers leading to 23 points.

Abby Hsu led Columbia scoring a team-high 16 points for the Lions. Kaitlyn Davis finished with 10 points and nine rebounds.

What’s Next For Princeton

Princeton gets the Ivy League's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament with the win. Who and where they play will be announced on Sunday during the NCAA Selection Show on ESPN/ESPN 2 at 8 p.m.

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