PHILADELPHIA After completing a stretch of four straight road games with a 3-2 win over Yale last weekend, Penn returns to The Palestra on Friday for a match with Dartmouth at 7 p.m. Saturday, the Quakers host Harvard at 4 p.m.
Penn’s match on Friday is part of the Dig Pink program to raise breast cancer awareness. Both teams will be wearing pink shirts during warmups as well as pink shoelaces during the match. All fans in attendance are invited to wear pink clothing of their own in support of Dig Pink. For more information on Dig Pink, click here.
The Quakers are coming off perhaps their finest effort of the season last Saturday in New Haven. Penn knocked off the Bulldogs, who were previously undefeated in Ivy League play. The Red and Blue had three players who reached double figures in kills, led by Julia Swanson with 15. Elizabeth Semmens added 14 and Ashley Hawkins contributed 10 kills.
Penn was resilient throughout the match, coming back from multiple deficits for the win. The most important comeback came in the fifth and deciding set, when the Quakers rallied from down 5-2 to win by two points, 16-14.
A look at the statistical leaders among Ivy players finds Swanson sitting third in kills with 210. Kathryn Turner ranks 10th in the league in hitting percentage at .246. Megan Tryon is fourth in total assists and sixth in assists per set. Madison Wojciechowski’s 300 digs is good enough for second place in the Ivies.
Last season, Penn swept the Big Geen, winning 3-1 in Hanover and 3-0 at home. Turner and Swanson were big factors in the sweep in the Palestra. Turner finished with a match-high 15 kills and Swanson added 10. Turner’s 15 kills came without an error on her 22 attempts, giving her a hitting percentage of .682 for the match. In all, Penn owns a 33-7 advantage in the all-time series with Dartmouth.
Penn also has a significant advantage over its opponent on Saturday, with 38 wins in 45 matches with Harvard. Penn swept both matches with the Crimson in 2007, taking the match in Cambridge, 3-0, and scoring a 3-1 win in The Palestra. Turner was again a force for the Quakers, registering 20 kills in the home victory.
Dartmouth enters the weekend with a 6-10 record and is 2-3 in the Ivy League. Last time out, the Big Green fell to Cornell, 3-2. Madeline Baird leads the offense for Dartmouth with 171 kills. She is followed by Megan MacGregor who has 158. Kendall Houston and Natalia Wrobel are the main setters, each with over 200 assists.
Harvard sits at 8-10 with an even 3-3 mark in the Ancient Eight, good for fourth place in the league. The Crimson have won six of their last nine matches, including five in a row from Sept. 26 to Oct. 3. Anne Ingersoll is second in the Ivies in hitting percentage, hitting at a .383 clip. Kathryn McGinley is second in kills with 218. McGinley and the other hitters for Harvard receive a majority of their sets from Lily Durwood. The junior setter has 698 assists on the season.