PHILADELPHIA, PA. 12/4/2018 – The University of Pennsylvania played the Miami Hurricanes in basketball nine times before. This was the first Penn that hosted Miami in a game at The Palestra, and greeted them with a barrage of three-pointers in an 89 – 75 win. The Quakers had 11 from distance in the first half alone and finished the game with 13.
Forward Michael Wang led the way for the Red and Blue setting career-marks in points, 23, and made three-pointers connecting on 5 from distance. He also played a career-high 27 minutes. Forward AJ Brodeur added 18 points and led the team in rebounds with 8. His teammates found him open and Wang responded.
“One of the reasons I came here was by seeing the ball movement and how coach wants to play the game,” said Wang. “That helps me a lot.”
Penn made 13 of 23 from beyond the arc. The team found a way to get the open shots, winding up with 23 assists on 34 baskets. As a team the Red and Blue fell 2 shy of the team record for made trey’s at 15 against Stockton in November. On offense the Red and Blue made 34 of 57 from the floor showing a good inside – outside presence.
Penn appeared to be comfortably ahead midway through the second half leading by as many as 19 points, the largest lead, at 73 – 54 with 9:50 to play. The Hurricanes closed the gap with a 19 – 4 run cutting the deficit to 4 points.
“You could sense it, they (Miami) were getting looks,” said Penn Coach Steve Donahue. “We competed. What I liked is that we did it on both sides. We didn’t panic, we made sure that we got a good look and connected. We made foul shots to keep them at bay. We made stops. They had all of the momentum, but we figured out a way to win.”
The Red and Blue closed it out with Devon Goodman, who scored 16 points, getting 4 crucial points in a decisive answer.
“It took a lot of grit,” Brodeur said about holding off the Hurricanes. “Good teams from good conferences will make runs. We have to absorb that blow and come back even stronger.”
The Hurricanes sank nearly half of their shots, 28 of 58.
The last time the Quakers defeated an ACC team was in November of 2001, a 79 – 74 win over Georgia Tech.
“We have teams (in the Ivy League) that can take on the best teams in the country,” Brodeur said about getting a win over a Power 5 conference squad.
The Hurricanes are on a four-game skid. Their last game was a 77 – 73 loss to Yale, an Ivy League team. Miami ends a stretch of six games in 13 days. After a break for final exams, the Hurricanes host Houston Baptist.
Meanwhile the Red and Blue (7 – 2) ready themselves for a Big Five game at La Salle before returning home against Villanova.
Written By: Glenn Papazian
Notes: This was designated as the ALS Awareness Game. In collaboration with the Ivy League, Full Court Press on ALS to help fight this crippling disease. The Full Court Press on ALS works to increase awareness, raise funds, and sponsor educational initiatives. ALS is best known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease. It also took the life of long-time Villanova trainer Jake Nevin.