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March Total: 7
Season Total: 45
PRINCETON, N.J. - Sophomore Alyssa Baron won the Ivy League scoring title for the second straight year as the University of Pennsylvania women's basketball team wrapped up a successful 2011-12 campaign. However, on the final day of the season, Princeton capped an undefeated Ivy campaign and topped Penn, 79-42, Tuesday night inside Jadwin Gym.
Penn (13-15, 6-8 Ivy) finished the year with its highest win total since the 2004-05 season. Princeton (24-4, 14-0), which was ranked No. 27 in the latest Associated Press poll, finished unbeaten in league play to clinch its third straight Ivy title and NCAA Tournament berth.
Entering the game, Baron was six points behind Princeton's Niveen Rasheed for the scoring title. Last year, the Miami, Fla., native was the first freshman ever to lead the Ivy league in scoring. She won her second title in as many years with 18 points - aided on 10-of-10 shooting from the free throw line. Rasheed had 10 for the game and finished two shy of Baron's 474 points (16.9 per game).
Princeton took quick control on its home floor with the first eight points of the game. It was a 15-5 deficit when the Quakers put an early scare into the unbeaten Tigers.
Baron hit a jumper and senior Jourdan Banks found her way to the basket for another two. Baron then hit a pair free throws to pull Penn within 15-11 at the 9:08 mark.
About 90 seconds later, Banks made another nice move under the basket and converted to get within 18-13. But Princeton scored 15 of the last 17 to take a 33-18 advantage into the break.
The NCAA Tournament-bound Tigers left no doubt in the second half. Penn was 8-for-8 from the free throw line over the first 11 minutes, but did not have a field goal until Katy Allen hit a three. By that time, Princeton led 60-26.
The Tigers cruised from there in the season finale. Princeton was 29-of-56 (51.8%) from the floor and 8-of-15 (53.3%) from three. Penn was 13-of-50 (26.0%) against the top defense in the Ivy League and just 4-of-18 from three (22.2%). But Penn was a perfect 12-for-12 from the free throw line.
Penn forced 16 turnovers, but had five more than the Tigers. Princeton held a 30-12 advantage in the paint and 38-26 edge in rebounding.
Banks and senior Jess Knapp played in their final game in the Red and Blue. Banks was second on the team with eight points and led the Quakers with four rebounds. She also added two assists in 17 minutes. Knapp finished her career with more than 500 points, 500 rebounds and nearly 100 blocks.
Baron added four rebounds and two steals, while freshman Kathleen Roche and junior Brianna Bradford led Penn with threee assists apiece. Bradford also had a team-high three steals in 17 minutes off the bench.
Penn concludes a successful 2011-12 season. The Quakers registered the best 10-game start in program history and won seven games before the month of January for the first time in the program's 42-year history. Penn then finished with its highest win total in seven years.