Women's Basketball Holds Off Rider, 66-57

Box Score (pdf)

PHILADELPHIA - A tale of two halves ended in favor of the University of Pennsylvania women's basketball team as the Quakers held off Rider, 66-57, on Saturday afternoon inside The Palestra. Sophomore Alyssa Baron led Penn with a game-high 30 points.

Penn moved to 2-0 for the first time in five years, while Rider lost for the first time this season to drop to 2-1.

The Quakers established control early, starting the game on a 10-0 run thanks to five quick points out of the gate from Baron. Freshman Renee Busch extended the run with a deep three released an instant before the shot clock hit zero and senior Jess Knapp capped it at the foul line following a fast break.

Penn later went on a 14-0 streak over five minutes, Baron starting it with back-to-back triples and freshman Kara Bonenberger added a lay-up and a jumper as the Red and Blue took a 20-point lead at 34-14.

Almost everything Penn put up in the first half seemed to find net. The Quakers shot 17-of-31 from the floor overall and made seven of their 11 attempts from behind the arc as they established a 45-22 cushion as the teams entered the locker room.

The Broncs made a quick push early on in the second half but behind Baron's continued hot hand, Penn seemed to regain control and had its largest lead at 57-33 with less than 12 minutes to play. Then Rider awoke.

Turnovers were critical in the final few minutes of the contest as Penn struggled at times against Rider's pressure defense. A 10-0 run from the Broncs pulled them within 14 at 57-43, but Baron broke the drought with a fadeaway jumper off the glass. The next time down, the reigning Ivy Rookie of the Year made one of two at the line and Penn led 60-43.

Rider had one last burst in them, this one an 8-0 spurt that had the Penn lead in single-digits for the first time since early on at 60-51. With 4:41 still to play, it seemed it was still anyone's game. But with both defenses locking down, the clock became Penn's best friend.

For nearly four full minutes, neither team could crack the scoring column, and when Knapp hit a pair of free throws to extend Penn's lead to 62-51, less than one minute remained in the contest. Four free throws from Baron in the closing seconds salted the game away.

Busch had eight points on 2-of-2 shooting from the floor and a pair from the free throw line - all of her shotsattempted in the first half. Knapp added a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds.

The Quakers next face Big 5 rival La Salle on Tuesday night at Tom GolaArena. Tip-off is slated for 7 p.m.

Download: Penn-Rider Box.pdf