Men's Basketball Ready For Annual Palestra Clash with Saint Joseph's

PHILADELPHIA - Penn closes out the non-Ivy League portion of the 2008-09 schedule Saturday night with Saint Joseph’s, meaning the Quakers also finish off another Philadelphia Big 5 campaign. The Palestra figures to be packed once again Saturday night as the Hawks and the Quakers renew their rivalry.

GAME 14 – PENN (4-9) vs. SAINT JOSEPH’S (10-7)

Saturday, Jan. 24, 2009 * 7 p.m.

The Palestra * Philadelphia

TV: Comcast Network (formerly CN8) – Jon Gurevitch, Rob Kennedy

Radio: ESPN 950 AM – Brian Seltzer, Stan Pawlak

Quaker Notemeal...

• The nine teams Penn has lost to this season entered the weekend a combined 112-51, a 68.7 winning percentage; all of them have winning records (UNC 17-2, Drexel 9-8, Penn State 15-5, Albany 11-7, Villanova 14-4, Navy 14-5, UCF 12-6, Temple 10-7, La Salle 10-7).

• Penn is 4-0 when leading at the half this season, and 0-9 when trailing at the half.

• Through 13 games, Penn has had six different players lead in scoring in a game (Tyler Bernardini, Kevin Egee, Jack Eggleston, Harrison Gaines, Brennan Votel and Zack Rosen) and six different players lead in rebounding (Eggleston, Votel, Rosen, Bernardini, Conor Turley and Cameron Lewis).

• Penn has played just two games this season that have ended with a single-digit margin (a 66-64 loss at Drexel in Game 2, and Wednesday’s 79-70 loss at La Salle).

• Penn has shot 75.8 percent from the foul line the last six games (91-of-120); prior to the UCF Holiday Classic, the Quakers were 65.5 percent for the season.

• Rosen, a freshman, leads the Ivy League in assist/turnover ratio (2.00) and is second in assists per game (4.8). He has also scored 58 points (with four double-figure outings) and grabbed 23 rebounds in the last five games. In his first four collegiate games, Rosen had 25 assists and just three turnovers (all against No. 1 UNC).

• Bernardini, a sophomore, had his third 20-point game of the season Wednesday at La Salle (he has nine in his career); he has a team-high 10 double-figure scoring games this season, and collected his first collegiate double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds last weekend at NJIT.

• Gaines, also a sophomore, has had three straight double-figure scoring games (11.7 average).

• Junior Justin Reilly saw his first action of the 2008-09 season Wednesday at La Salle, after missing the first 12 games with an abdomen injury; also in that game, freshman Mike Howlett scored his first four points as a collegian.

Penn vs. Saint Joseph’s

• Saturday’s meeting between Penn and Saint Joseph’s is the 78th between these intracity rivals, with the Hawks holding a 44-33 advantage in the series including three straight wins.

• Last year, the Hawks rolled to an 82-42 win, pinning the Quakers with their largest Big 5 loss in program history.

• For the third year in a row, and just the fourth time in history, Penn is playing three Big 5 games within a 10-day span. The first time it happened was 1970, when the Quakers played Temple (Jan. 21), Saint Joseph’s (Jan. 24) and La Salle (Jan. 27) within the span of a week.

• Penn is 106-127 all-time against the teams that currently make up the Atlantic 10 -- including losses to Temple and La Salle the last two Wednesdays -- and the Quakers are concluding a stretch where they face three A-10 teams in 10 days.

Dayton ... 0-1

Duquesne ... 4-1

Fordham ... 2-6

George Washington ... 0-1

La Salle ... 38-24

Massachusetts ... 1-3

Rhode Island ... 1-1

St. Bonaventure ... 2-1

Saint Joseph’s ... 33-44

Saint Louis ... 0-1

Temple ... 22-42

• If you like to play the comparison game, Penn and Saint Joseph’s have two common opponents from this season...

Villanova - Penn 47-69 L, SJU 56-59 L

Drexel - Penn 63-65 L, SJU 52-64 L

• On December 22, Saint Joseph’s beat Cornell at The Palestra, 71-67, in its only other meeting with an Ivy team.

Notemeal From La Salle...

• La Salle shot 44 foul shots and made 30; both of those stats were opponent highs in the Glen Miller coaching era at Penn.

• Sophomore Tyler Bernardini scored 23 points, his third 20-point outing of the season (first since Nov. 22) and the ninth of his collegiate career.

• Bernardini tied his career high, and the high for a Penn player in the Miller era, by taking 10 three-point shots; he made four of them.

• Freshman Mike Howlett scored the first four points of his collegiate career.

• Junior Justin Reilly saw his first game action of 2008-09; he had missed the first 12 games due to injury.

Notemeal From NJIT...

• Penn extended NJIT’s losing streak to an NCAA Division I record 51 games; the Highlanders won their next game, four days later against Bryant, to end the streak.

• Penn won for the first time this season when shooting below 45 percent from the field.

• Penn won on an opposing team’s court for the first time this season.

• It was Penn’s lowest offensive output in a win since a 48-35 win over Princeton on Feb. 13, 2007.

• Bernardini had his first collegiate double-double (10 points, 10 rebounds).

• Sophomore Harrison Gaines tied for team-high honors with 15 points; all of them came in the second half.