Men's Basketball Downed by Cornell, 68-48

Box Score (PDF)

ITHACA, N.Y. - It was a perfect storm that the Penn men's basketball team walked into on Saturday night at Cornell's Newman Arena. It was enough that the Big Red was looking to clinch its third straight Ivy League title. But add in the fact that it was Senior Night, and the building was crackling.

On the court, the Quakers were facing a Cornell team looking to avenge its only Ivy loss this season, a 79-64 Penn win two weeks ago in Philadelphia.

The ingredients of all those factors made Saturday night's game predictable. Cornell started fast, and while Penn tried to challenge the night was more coronation than anything as the Big Red rolled, 68-48. Cornell improved to 25-4 overall, and is 11-1 in the Ivy League. The Big Red can clinch its NCAA bid next weekend with a win against eithre Brown or Yale, or a Princeton or Harvard loss in the final weekend.

Penn is now 5-20, 4-7 in Ivy play.

From a Cornell perspective, the night was all you could ask for. Senior guard Louis Dale, who did not have a field goal Friday vs. Princeton, knocked down a three-pointer to get things started. Little-used senior Andre Wilkins, a clear fan favorite, got two buckets after that, and the crowd was off and running. In the second half, Ryan Wittman reminded everyone of his explosiveness, scoring every which was for 15 of his team-high 18 points.

On the other side, Penn was behind the 8-ball to start and found the sledding even tougher when Zack Rosen got into foul trouble. He played just 11 minutes in the first half and Cornell took advantage to go up, 43-21, by the break.

Mike Howlett hit a jumper to start the second half, but Jon Jaques got a pair of layups and then Wittman knocked down a trey and got in the lane for another J. The score was 43-23, and the celebration was on.

Rosen didhis parttokeep Penn from getting completely blownaway, scoring16 of the Quakers'27 second-half points, but the closer the visitors would get was 15 points with 3:31 to play. Penn then had a chance to draw within 12 points, but Drew Godwin missed a three-point attempt.

Rosen finished the night with 23 points, going 7-of-10 from the field and knocking down four of his six trey attempts. Howlett had nine points and five rebounds. For Cornell, Dale (16 points) and Chris Wroblewski (13) aided Wittman in the scoring chart, while Jeff Foote had 11 rebounds.

Penn will be at home next weekend, hosting Harvard Friday night and Dartmouth Saturday night. Tip time forboth games will be 7 p.m.

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