PROVIDENCE, R.I. - Brown had several reasons to be up for Saturday night’s game against Penn, but no one could have envisioned what happened at the Bears’ Pizzitola Sports Center.
Brown celebrating Senior Night and wishing farewell to guards Mark McAndrew, Damon Huffman and center Mark MacDonald gave a lesson in offensive efficiency in the first half against a helpless Penn defense, and the result was a 75-43 Bears victory.
Victory? This was a dismantling.
It made for a sour homecoming for Penn head coach Glen Miller, who coached seven years at Brown before taking the Quaker job two seasons ago. Prior to the game, while Brown honored its outgoing seniors, Miller who recruited all three of them to Brown looked on like a proud father from the Penn bench.
That look did not last long.
Brown scored the game’s first 14 points, opened its lead up to 20 points with more than seven minutes left in the first half, and expanded it to as much as 32 before the halftime break. In that opening stanza, the Bears shot 65.4 percent from the field (17-of-26), got points from all seven players who saw time, and had 13 assists on 17 baskets while committing just three turnovers.
What kind of half was it? Brown banked in three-point shots on not one but two separate occasions.
At the other end, Penn hit just 6-of-19 shots in the opening 20 minutes, turned the ball over 10 times, and were good on none of their six three-point attempts.
If you were a Brown fan, it was downright laughable. For Penn fans, it was excruciating and embarrassing.
Things got no better in the second half. Brown which ran the same offensive set for the first 30 minutes of the game scored the first five points on a Scott Friske drive and a Huffman three-pointer. The score was 58-19 with 12 minutes to go.
For Penn, Brian Grandieri scored the Quakers’ first 10 points in the second half. It was not until Kevin Egee hit a driving layup exactly halfway through the half that a Penn player other than Grandieri hit a point.
Grandieri ended the game with 16 points, and was the only Penn player in double figures. Penn's second-leading scorer was Jack Eggleston, who scored eight points by garnering the Quakers' opening field goal and then six of their last seven of the night. Harrison Gaines had six.
For Brown, McAndrew and Sullivan finished with 16 points apiece, while Huffman had 14 and Scott Friske scored 13.
The Quakers are home for the final time next weekend, hosting Cornell and Columbia at The Palestra. Friday’s game with the Ivy champion Big Red starts at 8 p.m. and will be televised live on CN8, while Saturday’s matchup with the Lions tips off at 7 p.m.