PHILADELPHIA - Entering the eighth game of the season, the Quakers have played on their home court just twice this season. On Saturday, they’ll have another crack at an opponent on the Palestra floor when they tip off with Rider at 2 p.m.
Catching the Game
Video and live stats will be available on the Penn Sports Network at PennAthletics.com. Daniel Fritz and Craig Smith will call the action. A full recap and box score can be found at PennAthletics.com shortly after the conclusion of the game.
In the Series
Last season, the Broncs snapped a six-game losing streak to the Quakers. Rider won the first matchup between these teams in 1982, but did not win again until last year in Lawrenceville. Penn has not lost at home to the Broncs since that first meeting, winning the last three in West Philadelphia. This will be the sixth straight season that these teams have met (Penn is 4-1 in that time).
About the Broncs
After dropping its first two games, Rider defeated Monmouth on its home court. However, since that time, the Broncs have lost the last five and are 0-3 on the road so far this season. Rider scores an average of 56.1 points per game and allows just more than 70 ppg. The Broncs have shot 36.0 percent this season, hitting 27.5 percent from three. They have outrebounded their opponents by an average of three per game. Three Broncs are averaging double figures this season. Tammy Meyers, who had 23 against the Quakers in Lawrenceville last season, leads the team with 13.5 ppg. Not far behind is Cintella Spotwood at 12.9 ppg and Amanda Sepulveda at 12.4 ppg. Meyers also leads the Broncs in steals with 15 and assists with 20. Caitlin Bopp is the squad’s top rebounder, grabbing 8.3 per game.
Home Sweet Home
Four weeks into the season, the Quakers have played just two home games coming into Saturday’s matchup with Rider. However, the matchup with the Broncs is the first of three straight and five of six for Penn at The Palestra. Last year, the Red and Blue were much better on their home court. Five of their nine wins came at The Palestra and they finished with a winning record, 4-3, against the Ivy League at home in 2008-09.
Early Season Honors
Several Penn players have been recognized by the Big 5 and the Ivy League for their efforts so far this season. Jess Knapp (Dec. 7) and Sarah Bucar (Nov. 23 and Nov. 30) were named to the Ivy League Player of the Week honor roll this year. Knapp was also a Big 5 honor roll honoree after her career efforts last week, while Bucar was named to the same list on Nov. 23 and Nov. 30.
Last Time Out
Despite three members of the Quakers scoring in double figures, and career efforts from Jess Knapp and Kim Adams, the Quakers couldn’t catch Navy in a 65-51 defeat to the Midshipmen in Alumni Hall Sunday. Penn’s defense was spectacular to start the contest. Nine minutes into the game, Navy had just one basket. The only problem was that the Quakers had just three themselves. Senior Amy Donovan, who earned her first career start, jump-started the scoring on Penn’s second possession with a bucket from the baseline. Shortly thereafter, Navy hit a three to take the lead at the 17:30 mark. They would not score again until the 11:06 mark. When Navy broke its scoreless streak, Sarah Bucar responded with a three for a 9-5 lead and the offenses started to kick in. Navy got to within 11-10 and the team’s started to share baskets. The lead changed hands three times within a minute, ending with a 14-13 edge for the Midshipmen with 5:12 to go in the half. Navy went on a 13-2 run for a 25-15 lead with two minutes left. The deficit was 27-17 when Bucar went coast-to-coast in the final seven seconds, floating in a shot at the buzzer. The Quakers were quickly within five to start the second half, making the score 29-24 two minutes in. However, Navy scored the next seven points and 11 of the next 13 for a 40-26 lead at the 14:15 mark. Four minutes later, the Navy lead was 49-34, the largest advantage of the game. Penn scored back-to-back baskets to get within 11. Then, down 12 with 6:28 to play, they once again scored four straight points and trailed 53-45 with just over five minutes left. That was as close as they would get.
Heading into the holiday season, Penn will have a 16-day break between games before resuming play on Dec. 29 at home against Mount St. Mary’s.
Download: 12-12-09 Rider.pdf