PHILADELPHIA - The Quakers have won six straight matches and look to keep that streak intact when they travel to New England to take on Brown, Friday at 7 p.m. and then follow it up with a battle against Yale, Saturday at 6 p.m.
Penn's two victories brought the Red and Blue over .500 for the first time in over a month, as the team improved to 10-9 overall. The Quakers also moved into a tie for first place in the Ancient Eight with Princeton, running their league record to 6-1. Brown is 7-13 overall and earned its first Ivy win of the season last weekend while Yale sits a game back of Penn in the league standings at 5-2 following a pair of wins last weekend.
Last Time Out
The Quakers opened last weekend by taking care of business in their first Ivy road match of the season. Penn used a balanced offense and strong defense to dispatch of Cornell in three sets, 25-18, 25-21 and 25-17. Lauren Martin was the team's top hitter, firing 14 kills at a .520 clip. One night later the Red and Blue had to fight through four tough sets to take down a determined Columbia squad, 25-21, 25-22, 20-25 and 26-24. The Quakers trailed by at least five in each set, but came back to win three of the four, including the final set when they trailed 17-10 and 24-23. Three players had double-figure kills and senior Madison Wojciechowski added 28 digs on defense.
In their first match of the season, the Quakers beat a scrappy Brown squad in four sets at the Palestra, 25-20, 18-25, 25-16 and 25-22. Penn hit just .204 and was out-blocked 16-5, but got the points when they needed them most in beating the Bears for the fourth consecutive time.
The Red and the Blue needed four sets to take down Yale at the Palestra earlier in the month, winning 25-21, 25-19, 20-25 and 25-22. Penn came out on top in a defensive match which featured 175 digs between the two teams and 15 total blocks. Overall the Quakers have won three straight against Yale, including the last two in four sets.
Following the Red and Blue
Penn fans can follow all the action this weekend via live stats and video. Against Brown, live stats can be found here, while a live webcast is also available (click here). Live stats (click here) and a webcast (click here) are also available for the Yale match.
Scouting the Bears
Brown's offense relies heavily on two players, freshman Emma Pastore and sophomore Katrina Post. The two lead the team in both attempts and kills. Pastore averages a team-best 2.74 kills per set but hits just .114 while Post fires 2.48 kills per set at a .142 clip. As a team the Bears only hit .156 and average 11.80 kills per set. Defensively, junior Annika Gliottone leads the team with 4.34 digs per set and sophomore Kathryn Glickman averages a team-best 1.15 blocks per set.
Scouting the Bulldogs
Yale may be in third place in the Ivies, but statistically has the post potent offense and one of the strongest defenses in the league. Within Ivy play, the Bulldogs lead the league in kills per set (14.28), assists (13.41) and digs (19.03), and is second in hitting percentage (.228). Yale features a three-headed attack with junior Bridget Hearst (3.42), freshman Erica Reetz (3.00) and Haley Wessels (2.58) each averaging over 2.5 kills per set. Reigning Ivy League Freshman of the Week, Kendall Polan averages 1.61 kills per set while also serving as the team's primary setter, dishing out 9.45 assists per set. Defensively, senior Kelly Ozuovich leads the team with 5.48 digs per set and junior Katie Cordell is second with 3.79. At the net, freshman McHaney Carter averages a team-best .96 blocks per set.
Madison Wojciechowski is ranked third in the country, averaging 5.78 digs per set. As the team, the Quakers are currently ranked 14th in the country with 17.59 digs per set.
Megan Tryon leads the league averaging 10.54 assists per set ... Madison Wojciechowski leads the Ivies with 5.78 digs per set ... Amanda Pacheco is second in the Ivy League, hitting .344 while freshman Susan Stuecheli is fifth at .310 ... Senior Julia Swanson is fifth in the Ancient Eight at 3.21 kills per set and Lauren Martin is seventh with 2.84 ... Stuecheli is sixth with .94 blocks per set ... Tryon is seventh with .25 service aces per set (16).
Ivy League 'D'
Halfway through the Ivy League season, Quakers have been one of the most impressive defensive teams within league play. Penn is allowing opponents to hit .150 in seven matches, tops in the Ancient Eight, while Yale is second at .168. The Red and Blue have also allowed just 20 service aces in league play, by far the lowest total of any team.
This season Penn is 10-2 when holding opponents to hitting .200 or less. The Quakers' lone losses came in five-set defeats at the hands of Villanova and Princeton. Conversely, the Red and Blue are 0-7 when allowing an opponent to hit over .200.
Can You Dig It?
Wojciechowski recorded double-digit digs in both matches over the weekend, extending her streak of matches with at least ten digs to a school-record 28 matches. Overall she has recorded double-digit digs in 92 of 99 career matches.
The Quakers haven't dropped consecutive sets in any of their last six matches. Penn has only dropped five sets total and has followed each with a victory. Penn is currently tied atop the Ivy standing with Princeton. Each has a 6-1 record, with the Red and Blue's lone loss coming at the hands of the Tigers, while Princeton lost to Columbia last weekend.
Second to One
Senior Julia Swanson moved into third place on the program's all-time kill list over the weekend with 1,127 kills. She passed Kari Sommerstad (1,117) and is just three kills shy of passing Melissa Ingalls (1,129) and moving into second place. Swanson also has 978 career digs, putting her in position to finish her career as just one of three Penn volleyball players with 1,000 kills and 1,000 digs.
Wojciechowski's 47 digs over the weekend bring her school-record total to 1,962 career digs. Having already surpassed the previous school record of 1,525, she is close to becoming the just second Ivy player with 2,000 career digs. Former Cornell standout Megan Mushovic holds the Ivy record with 2,040.
Senior Megan Tryon is finding herself moving up the Quakers' all-time assists list. The setter went over the 3,400 mark last weekend, passing Linda Zhang (3,361) for fourth on the program's all-time list. With her 3,422 assists, Tryon now trails just Christine Dingivan (3,494), Jodie Antypas (3,545) and Heather Glick (3,582).