PHILADELPHIA - To say that the University of Pennsylvania men's basketball team has struggled in the non-conference portion of this season would be an understatement. None of that matters on Saturday, though, as the Quakers begin the "14-game tournament" that is the Ivy League season. First up: A trip to preseason favorite Princeton.
GAME 15 - PENN (2-12, 0-0) at PRINCETON (6-7, 0-0)
Saturday, Jan. 12, 2013 * 6 p.m.
Jadwin Gym (Princeton, N.J.)
TV: NBC Sports Network (Randy Moss, Dalen Cuff)
Radio: WXPN 88.5 FM (Matt Leon, Stan Pawlak)
Click here for Live Stats!
Penn Game Notes (PDF) / Princeton Game Notes (PDF)
The Penn-Princeton Series
*The Quakers and the Tigers are meeting for the 227th time, with Penn leading the most historic rivalry in Ivy League history 123-103. Penn has played Princeton more times than any other program.
*Princeton has won six of the last seven meetings; prior to that, Penn had won five in a row from 2007-09.
*These teams split last year, Penn winning in The Palestra (82-67) but Princeton gaining the victory in the season finale here at Jadwin (62-52). In that game, the Quakers were playing for a share of the Ivy League title with Harvard.
*This is the earliest Penn-Princeton game, by calendar date, since the teams met on Jan. 6, 1996 with Penn winning the game, 57-55.
Countdown to 1,700
Penn has won 1,699 games as a program; with one more, the Quakers will become the 11th NCAA Division I program to reach 1,700 wins. (Indiana recently became the 10th, scoring its 1,700th win on December 19 against Mount St. Mary's.)
He'll Take the Charity
Junior Miles Cartwright started the season by going 12-of-19 at the foul line -- unusual, given that he began the season at almost 80 percent for his career. Since then, however, he has returned to form -- in fact, he has surpassed it. Cartwright enters Saturday's game having hit his last 10 free throws and 31 of his last 33, and he is 53-of-58 (.914) over his last 11 games including a streak of 21 in a row over a five-game stretch that ended at Wagner.
Some of Penn's less experienced players have shown signs of finding their way and growing into the college game recently. Some examples...
*Junior Dau Jok entered this season with nine career points and seven rebounds; he entered last Saturday's La Salle game at 37 career points and 29 career boards; in the last two games, he has scored 26 points and snared 18 rebounds.
*In his last three games, freshman Tony Hicks has 36 points (12.0 ppg); in the last two games he has shot 50 percent from the field (10-20) after shooting just 30.7 percent in the first 12 contests.
*In his last five games, freshman Darien Nelson-Henry has 44 points (8.8 ppg) and 22 rebounds (4.4 rpg); after scoring a combined 16 points in his first six games, "DNH" has scored seven or more points in five of his last seven appearances.
*In his last four games, sophomore Henry Brooks has 36 points (9.0 ppg); in the last three games, he has shot 61.1 percent from the field (11-18) after shooting just 43.5 percent in the first 11 contests.
*In the last two games, sophomore Camryn Crocker has 12 assists and a 4.00 assist/turnover margin (12/3).
*After averaging just 1.9 rebounds per game in his first nine appearances for Penn -- remember, he missed all of last year due to injury -- sophomore Greg Louis has had four or more boards in four of the last five games. (In the outlier game, he had three.)
*After averaging 2.8 points per game in Penn's first eight contests, Louis has averaged 7.5 ppg in the last six.
Quaker Notemeal From Lafayette
*Penn lost despite setting season team highs in points (83), shooting percentage (59.6), three-point FG percentage (42.9), field goals made (31) and assists (22), and tying a team low for turnovers (11).
*The 22 assists tied a team high for the Jerome Allen coaching era (also 22 against Marist last year).
*Penn's shooting percentage was its best in nearly two years, when the Quakers shot 62.8 percent against Dartmouth on Feb. 4, 2011.
*Penn's 22/11 assist/turnover ratio was by far its best this year; in fact, it was just the second time this season the Quakers have had more assists than turnovers.
*Penn also had nine steals, giving the Quakers 32 in the last four games (8.0 per game).
*Penn got more points from its bench players (51) than its starters (32) for the second straight game; the bench players have outscored the starters 87-53 in the last two games.
*Junior Dau Jok scored 18 points which not only represented a career high, it was also his first double-figure scoring game at Penn.
*Jok became the fifth different player to lead Penn in scoring in a game this season (also Cartwright, Hicks, Louis and Dougherty).
*Freshman Darien Nelson-Henry's 17 points were more than double his previous season/career high, which came last Saturday at La Salle (8).
*Freshman Tony Hicks had 12 points, hitting double figures for the third straight game (12.0 ppg in that span) and fifth time this season; he also had a season/career high in rebounds (5) and tied his season/career best in assists (4).
*Junior Miles Cartwright scored eight points -- snapping a four-game streak of double-figure scoring performances -- but had eight assists, a season high and one shy of his career best.
*Sophomore Camryn Crocker tied his season/career high in assists (6), which he set in the Quakers' previous game, last Saturday at La Salle.