The road to Ivy Madness continues this weekend

The first weekend with all eight Ivy League teams competing in league play sets the tone and the road to Harvard

Pennsylvania and Princeton will take the court for the first time in nearly two weeks tonight, as Ivy League play kicks into full gear this weekend.

Penn and Princeton last played on January 11, a 75-55 win for the Tigers. They will embark on the Dartmouth-Harvard weekend, as Princeton opens with Dartmouth tonight, before taking on the Crimson tomorrow. The Quakers take on Harvard tonight, before traveling to Dartmouth tomorrow.

DURHAM, NC – NOVEMBER 29: Kayla Padilla #45 of the University of Pennsylvania drives with the ball during a game between Penn and Duke at Cameron Indoor Stadium on November 29, 2019 in Durham, North Carolina. (Photo by Andy Mead/ISI Photos/Getty Images)

While Princeton and Penn are the two preseason favorites, Yale has had a terrific start to their Ivy League season. The Bulldogs are 12-3 overall, including a big win over North Carolina in the non-conference. They have swept their two opening games against Brown and currently stand at 2-0 in the league. They also find themselves as a No. 12 seed in Charlie Creme’s latest Bracketology predictions for ESPN.

The Bulldogs will travel to New York City tonight to take on Columbia. Head coach Megan Griffith has her team playing very well heading into the heart of league play. The Lions, a team that along with Yale, I thought would make significant strides this season, are 10-5 overall and split their opening series with Cornell, including an overtime loss to the Big Red in Ithaca. The Lions would love a sweep this weekend, but would certainly welcome a split as they get set to host Yale tonight and Brown tomorrow.

Brown has gotten off to a difficult start in league play dropping both games to Yale to open league play. Following a 6-7 record in the non-conference, the Bears open with a difficult weekend on the road at Cornell and Columbia.

The Big Red are coming off of an important overtime victory over Columbia last weekend. It certainly wasn’t a must win for Cornell and head coach Dayna Smith, but for this early in league play, it was close. They got it and will look to secure two more this weekend as they take on Brown tonight, before hosting Yale tomorrow night.

SYRACUSE, NY – DECEMBER 28: Head coach Dayna Smith of the Cornell Big Red reacts to a play against the Syracuse Orange during the first half at the Carrier Dome on December 28, 2014 in Syracuse, New York. Syracuse defeated Cornell 76-59. (Photo by Rich Barnes/Getty Images)

Dartmouth and Harvard split their league-opening series earlier this month and are set to host the toughest of the back-to-backs this weekend, as they welcome Penn and Princeton. Dartmouth, at 7-8 on the season, opens with the Tigers tonight before taking on the Quakers tomorrow afternoon. Harvard will take on Penn tonight and Princeton tomorrow.

With only four teams making the Ivy League Tournament, every game, every weekend, is extremely important. For teams like Columbia, Cornell, Dartmouth, and Harvard, who all sit at 1-1 early on, this weekend presents an opportunity to propel themselves forward with a sweep that could set the tone for the rest of league play.

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