Easton, Pa. The Penn women’s basketball team wasted little time in evening its record on the season, defeating Lafayette, 68-33, on Monday at the Allen P. Kirby Sports Center. Joey Rhoads led all scorers with 14 points off the bench as the Red and Blue reserves outscoring the Leopards’ bench, 41-12. The Leopards’ 33 points were the least allowed by Penn in a win since holding Temple to 29 on Jan. 17, 1995.
Penn (6-6) opened the game on a 12-0 run, which last six minutes, 50 seconds. Jennifer Fleischer scored six of her 10 points with three lay ups during the run. All five of Fleischer’s field goals (5-of-6) came in the paint as the Quakers out-produced Lafayette (2-11) 32-0 in the paint.
Rhoads scored 11 of her game-high 14 points in the first half, helping her team to a 29-11 lead at the break. The sophomore guard finished the game perfect from the floor, going 5-for-5 from the field, 2-for-2 from beyond the arc and 2-for-2 from the free-throw line.
Monica Naltner, who finished with nine points, capped an 8-2 Penn run with a pair of free throws (3-for-4) to begin the second half. The Red and Blue took their largest lead of the game when Henley Hansen scored a lay up at the 3:31 mark of the second half, giving Penn a 38-point lead, 61-23. Hansen recorded a career high five points on 2-of-3 shooting from the floor and 1-of-2 from the free-throw line.
Also hitting career and season marks were Lauren Pears, matching a career high with eight points (3-for-4), and Maria DiDonato, scoring a season-high nine points in 12 minutes on the court. Fleischer registered a season high in blocked shots with six swats. The lopsided victory allowed the Red and Blue to utilize their bench as all 15 Quakers that dressed played a minimum of three minutes.
Penn’s team defense stepped up, recording a season-high 11 steals and affording Lafayette just six second-chance points. The Leopards stand-out freshman, Vanessa VanDeVenter, who has scored in double figures in eight games for the Leopards, was held scoreless on 0-for-6 shooting. Lindsay Myers, Val Gomez and Maureen Johnson led Lafayette’s scoring attack with six points apiece.
The Quakers’ final non-Ivy League contest comes in the form of the Lehigh Mountain Hawks. Penn will take on its second opponent from the Patriot League on Jan. 18. Tip off from Stabler Arena is scheduled for 7 p.m.
Written by Mat Kanan, associate director of athletic communications