PHILADELPHIA, PA. 3/10/2018 – The University of Pennsylvania had both its men’s and women’s teams earn berths in the Ivy League basketball tournament at the Palestra. Penn was a big part of Ivy Madness, and will have both teams playing in the Championship finals on Sunday. The men defeated Yale 80 – 57. For the women it was a grind it out game, but they found a way and advanced with a 57 – 52 victory over Harvard.
#2 Penn 80 #3 Yale 57
The Quakers lost to the Bulldogs on the next to the last game of the regular season. That game cost Penn the #1 overall seed in this weekend. The Red and Blue avenged that loss posting an 80 – 57 victory to advance to the title game. AJ Brodeur led the way for the Quakers scoring 25 points and grabbed 10 rebounds, his fourth double-double of the season. It was also the fifth time he has scored at least 20 points.
Penn took control of the game in the first half making over half of their shots (14 of 26) and never lost their shooting touch finishing at 52.7% (29 of 55). Yale on the other hand was limited to 21 of 64 from the floor (32.8%), and went 10 for 35 in the opening 20 minutes. The Quakers moved out to a 24 – 9 lead in the first 10 minutes, and stayed in front by double-digits the rest of the game.
Off the Boards Penn had a 46 – 27 advantage.
Two other Quakers scored in double-figures. Forward Max Rothschild scored 11 points and added 5 rebounds. Darnell Foreman also put 11 on the board adding 8 rebounds and a game-best 5 assists. Ten Penn players scored, and had 14 assists on 29 baskets.
Paul Atkinson and Blake Reynolds each scored 11 points. Reynolds led the team with 6 rebounds.
Penn meets #1 Harvard for the Ivy League title and a trip to the NCAA Tournament with a win.
#2 Penn 57 # 3 Harvard 52
It was Harvard that handed Penn their last loss. For the tables to be turned the Quakers relied on defense and experience, and that helped them overcome the Crimson. It was not artistic offense for either team. Penn wound up shooting 19 of 57 (33.3%), but the defense held Harvard to 17 of 66 (25.8%). Down the stretch the Crimson missed their last five shots, three of them were from beyond the arc.
With 5 minutes on the clock and the Red and Blue leading 45 – 41, they found some flow as the next three baskets were three-point shots; one from Phoebe Sterba and two from senior Anna Ross, who scored a team-high 15 points. Two free throws by senior Beth Brzozowski gave the Red and Blue a 5-point advantage with 8.1 seconds to play. Fellow senior Michelle Nwokedi had 8 points and game-high tying 14 rebounds.
Harvard was paced by guard Katie Benzan with a game-best 20 points. All of her field goals were three-pointers. Forward Jeannie Boehm had 14 rebounds to go along with 8 points. Taylor Rooks also had double-figures in rebounds pulling down 12 boards. She also had 10 points for a double-double.
Penn will meet arch-rival Princeton, the top seed, for the Ivy Crown. Nothing more needs to be said.
Written By: Glenn Papazian