PHILADELPHIA – The University of Pennsylvania women’s basketball team had its five-game winning streak snapped on Tuesday evening, falling 50-46 to Saint Joseph’s at Michael J. Hagan Arena. The Quakers drop their first Big 5 contest of the season, and move to 5-2 overall.
How it Happened
Up two with the ball, Ciara Andrews knocked down a jumper with seven seconds left to put Saint Joseph’s ahead, 50-46 -- a deficit the Quakers would not have enough time to overcome.
Penn jumped all over St. Joseph’s in the first quarter, with Anna Ross setting the tone with a three-pointer on the opening possession. Kasey Chambers also started sharp, as Penn built an early 10-1 lead. Chambers first initiated a nice move to the rim for a lay-in, followed by a quick dish for a Lauren Whitlatch three-pointer.
Sydney Stipanovich also found her rhythm in the opening quarter, sinking back-to-back deep jumpers to give Penn a 14-7 lead. The Hawks climbed back, however, eventually taking their first lead of the game with 1:25 left, and then taking a 17-16 edge into the second.
The Hawks kept the momentum rolling in the second, as a three-ball from Alyssa Monaghan gave St. Joseph’s a 23-18 lead. The Quakers, on the other hand, couldn’t get much going -- scoring just three points before the first media timeout with 4:51 left in the half.
Although the Quakers were unable to find rhythm offensively, they stayed in the game with solid defense. Remaining within striking distance, Penn started to get things going towards the end of the half. Off a nice dish from Stipanovich, Whitlatch made a three-pointer with 54 seconds remaining to cut the lead to 27-26. Saint Joseph’s capped the scoring in the half with a layup, taking 29-26 edge into the break.
Much like the first half, the Red and Blue started the third quarter red hot -- rattling off 10 straight points to earn a 36-29 advantage. Back to-back long balls from Ross and Whitlatch, followed by a layup from Nwokedi fueled the run. The Quakers were unable to get more of an edge than that, with St. Joseph’s cutting the lead to three points by the end of the third quarter (41-38).
St. Joseph’s scored the first two baskets of the fourth quarter to take a 42-41 lead. Although the Quakers were able to muster a 45-44 lead midway through the final frame, Penn was cold offensively. The Red and blue scored just five points in the fourth, and missed their final six shots from the floor.
After Nwokedi made one-of-two from the line to cut the lead to two with 46 seconds left, the Hawks were able to milk the clock down to seven seconds until Andrews provided the final clutch shot of the game.
Inside the Numbers
Nwokedi finished one point, and three blocks shy of a triple-double -- compiling a final line of 9 points, 11 rebounds and seven blocks (tied a career best). Ross also scored nine points, while Whitlatch finished as the Quakers’ leading scorer with 11. Stipanovich followed with eight points on 4-of-14 shooting, while snagging six boards.
Penn will take on another city rival, Drexel, on December 19. The Quakers and Dragons will be the first game of a men’s and women’s doubleheader at The Palestra, beginning at noon.
Download: Penn-SJU Box.pdf