A the team banquet, the Harschberger-Johnson-Brendel Prize for Sportsmanship, Loyalty and Leadership is a prestigious honor was given to the person that not only embodies the qualities of sportsmanship, loyalty and leadership outlined in the award title, but also builds bridges between current Penn players and alumni. Senior tri-captain Kimberly Franklin was this season’s recipient.
The lone senior on the team, Franklin was the team’s second leading scorer in the first part of the season. She was sidelined by injury before the Ivy League season, cutting her final campaign short.
Epton-Tarr Award was presented to junior Anca Popovici and recognized her efforts as the consummate team player throughout the season. Popovici was also awarded the team award for best defense.
“Anca Popovici was a solid and consistent defender for us and grew in her experience and performance as well,” said Head Coach Pat Knapp
Popovici was the only member of the 2007-08 team to start every game. She averaged 2.24 assists and 4.6 points per game. She also earned the All-Big 5 Academic Award.
“Anca’s Big 5 academic award is what it is all about at Penndedicated student-athletes successfully competing both athletically and academically,” said Knapp.
Junior Carrie Biemer led the team’s scoring all season and was named the team’s MVP. Biemer averaged 13.9 points per game and scored a career-high 28 points in two games. She scored in double-digits in 22 games and 20 or more in six outings. The junior was also named second team All-Big 5.
“I am excited about the year Carrie Biemer had for us and very happy for her,” said Knapp. “I think Carrie has thrust herself into a leadership position on this team and if she keeps improving, her senior year could be outstanding.”
Kim Adams was named the Most Improved Player. After a stellar performance in the second game of the season, Adams was sidelined with injury, but returned in time for Ivy League action. She went on to be the team’s second-leading scorer with 9.8 points per game.
“Kim Adams came on strong after a six-week absence due to injury,” said Knapp “When she became full strength in mid-January, she improved and really hit her stride when we got into Ivy games. She became that other consistent scoring threat we needed to go along with Carrie.”
The final two awards presented take into consideration some of the more intangible aspects of the team and game. The Hustle Award is given to the student-athlete that consistently outworks her teammates in practice and competition. This year two players received the award. Popovici won for the second year while sophomore Sarah Bucar was also recognized for her efforts during the season.
Finally, the Unsung Heroine Award, given to a member of the team that recognizes the accomplishments of a player that may not have tangible stats but contributes to the team. Again, two players received this year’s award. Both Caitlin Slover and Kelly Scott were sidelined with separate injuries at various points of the season.
“Our “Unsung Heroine” award went to Kelly Scott and Kate Slover and it was well deserved,” said Knapp. “Both players got hurt three times over the course of the year, coming back ready to play with great enthusiasm each time, but the third time ended the season for both and we missed them. I know they will work hard again to return to the rotation for 2008-09.”
Penn finished its season with a 7-22 overall record and in a tie for sixth place in the Ivy standings with a 4-10 record.