PHILADELPHIA - The only team in the Ivy League sitting at 4-0, Penn swept the Ancient Eight's weekly awards announced by the Ivy League on Monday, with Erin Brennan earning Offensive Player of the Week honors and Emily Leitner taking home the Defensive Player of the Week award.
Penn's two senior co-captains were dominant over the weekend as the Quakers went 1-1. On Friday night, Leitner set new career highs in saves (16), ground balls (6) and caused turnovers (4) in a loss to No. 3 Maryland. Leitner was busy all night, making seven saves in the first half and nine in the second half as a Penn team which played the game minus three starting midfielders due to injury hung close with the Terrapins until late in the game. On Sunday, Leitner was again a factor, shutting the door on Columbia in her 38 minutes of work, allowing just five goals while making five saves, causing three turnovers and scooping up three ground balls.
Leitner was able to get some time off in the second half as the Quakers scored early and often against Columbia en route to a 19-8 win. Erin Brennan was the catalyst in the first half, scoring four goals and adding three assists in the opening thirty minutes. She helped Penn to an 11-3 lead at the break, and did not see action in the second half. On Friday, Brennan had four points for the Quakers, scoring three times on 2011 Goalkeeper of the Year Brittany Dipper and adding an assist.
For Brennan, this marks the second time this season that she has been named Ivy League Offensive Player of the Week. She earned the distinction back on March 12 after she set a new Penn record for assists in a single game against Rutgers with seven and eclipsed the 100-goal mark in an overtime win against Harvard. Overall, she has been named Ivy League Offensive Player of the Week four times in her career.
Leitner has been named Ivy League Defensive Player of the Week three times following her selection this week. In 2011, she earned back-to-back nods as the best defensive player in the Ivies on March 7 and March 14.
The Red and Blue are 4-0 in the Ivy League and 6-3 overall. Penn is the lone team in the Ancient Eight at 4-0, a half game ahead of 3-0 Dartmouth in the race for an Ivy title and home field in the Ivy League Tournament the first weekend in May. The Quakers finish up a three-game homestand on Sunday against No. 1 Northwestern at noon.