By Joel Alderman
Jordan Bruner made his home debut a memorable one as the 6-9 Yale freshman slammed a dunk with 1:14 remaining to lead the Bulldogs to a 59-55 come-from-behind win over Albany on Saturday afternoon at the Lee Amphitheater in the Payne Whitney Gymnasium.
It was Bruner’s only basket in three attempts but one of the biggest in the game for the Bulldogs, who are now 3-4, snapping a four-game losing streak, all coming on the road.
Trailing most of the contest, Alex Copeland drilled a 3-pointer to tie the game midway through the second half and Anthony Dallier’s jumper gave Yale the lead for good, 46-44.
Albany, which already has a win this season over Penn State, got the score back to one, 54-53, on a David Nichols basket with under two minutes to play.
Bruner’s dunk upped it to 56-53, but Greg Stire’s layup with 51 seconds returned the Yale lead to one, 56-55.
Then came a big break for Yale. With thirteen seconds remaining, Joe Cremo of Albany grabbed a defensive rebound. Following a time out he was fouled by Miye Oni, another very promising Yale freshman, and he went to the line for a one and one, to give his team a tie or the lead.
However, with most of the announced crowd of 1,204 on its feet cheering for a miss, Cremo did just that. Then he fouled Yale’s Trey Phills, who made the first of two foul shots with five seconds left.
Copeland’s pair at 0:03 finished the scoring and provided the Bulldogs with its four point margin of victory. Copeland, again coming off the bench to sore in double figures, along with Dallier, each had 15 for Yale.