NEW YORK, N.Y. - Senior Kelly Scott led the University of Pennsylvania women's basketball team with 16 points, but Columbia jumped ahead early and held the lead throughout for a 77-57 win over the Quakers Friday night at Levien Gymnasium.
Junior Caitlin Slover was also in double figures, scoring 13, but the Quakers (3-15, 0-4 Ivy) couldn't overcome Columbia's (10-9, 3-2 Ivy) strong offensive attack as the Lions had four players score in double figures.
Two and a half minutes into the game, the Quakers fell down 11-3, and after senior Carrie Biemer hit a three to close the gap to 14-8 with just over 14 minutes remaining, Columbia scored the next five points and led by double digits for the remainder of the half.
Columbia took its largest lead of the half with just under 3:30 to go at 38-18, but Penn made a run. The Quakers used a full court press to force several Lions turnovers in the backcourt. It led to 14 Penn points in the final three minutes. In the meantime, Columbia managed just six points. When Scott hit a jumper with 12 seconds left, the Quakers forced a steal off the inbounds pass, and sophomore Jerin Smith hit a jumper with five seconds left to close the deficit to 44-32. However, in a play that summed up the night for Penn, Columbia's Danielle Browne hit a running floater from just inside the three-point arc as time expired for a 46-32 halftime lead.
The lead was down to 11 one minute into the second half, but an 11-2 run by the Lions stretched the advantage to 57-37 with 15 minutes remaining. The Quakers tried to make another run at the Lions, facing a 66-45 deficit. The full court pressure forced back-to-back turnovers and the Quakers capitalized with back-to-back buckets. The quick five points closed the gap to 66-50, but the Lions offense was once again too much. They shot over 60 percent in the first half and were over 50 percent in the game.
Penn had nine assists on 11 baskets in the first half as sophomore Erin Power, Biemer and junior Sarah Bucar led the team in that category with three each. The Quakers did shoot 50 percent from the floor behind Slover's 5-for-5 effort from the field. Sophomore Jerin Smith had eight of the team's 17 bench points. She also had five rebounds, which tied for the team lead with Power. Freshman Tyler Cumbo and senior Katarina Lackner each added four points off the bench.
Penn will make the trip to Ithaca, N.Y., tonight for the matchup with the Big Red Saturday night. Tip-off with the Cornell is at 7 p.m. The Big Red fell 75-56 to Princeton Friday night.
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