Philadelphia The University of Pennsylvania men’s basketball team improved to .500 on the season andended theBig 5 campaign at 2-2 with a convincing 67-59 win over Saint Joseph’s in The Palestra onJan. 25.
Four players scored in double figures in the Quakers' third-straight victory. Senior Tim Begley led the team with 16 points, while sophomores Ibrahim Jaaber and Mark Zoller both contributed 13 points and classmate Steve Danley added 10 points and a career-high six assists.
After grabbing the tip, Zoller scored the first basket of the game to give Penn a 2-0 lead. Saint Joseph’s Chet Stachitas sank a three to give the Hawks (8-8, 1-1 Big 5) a 3-2 lead, but it was the last lead they would see in the game as the Quaker (7-7, 2-2 Big 5) defense held Saint Joseph’s scoreless for four minutes and 26 seconds and rolled to a 16-3 lead on a 14-0 run. Penn went on another run, holding the Hawks without a field goal from the 10:42 mark to 5:40 remaining in the first stanza. SJU sank seven free throws to cut the lead to nine at 35-26 heading into the locker room.
The Hawks scored on their first two possessions to open the second stanza, pulling to within six just 56 seconds into the second half, but two Begley trifectas, three free throws by Danley and a bucket by Zoller put the Red and Blue back on top by 14. The Hawks continued to fight back, pulling to within three points with 4:40 on the clock. A slam dunk by Danley with 41 seconds remaining sealed the Penn victory.
Penn shot 40.7 percent for the game, while Saint Joseph's managed 39.1 percent from the field. The Red and Blue won the battle on the glass, out-rebounding their opponent, 40-35. Pat Carroll led SJU with 17 points.
The Quakers take a three-game win streak into their first Ivy League contest on Jan. 28 against Yale. Penn tips off against the Bulldogs at 8 p.m.
Written by Heather Palmer, associate director of athletic communications