NEW HAVEN, Conn.- A strong second-half defensive effort and three scorers in double figures helped the University of Pennsylvania women's basketball team pull away from Yale on Friday night, 61-42.
Penn earnedits first back-to-back wins at Lee Amphitheater since 2007-08 andimproved to 13-7 overall on the season and 4-2 in Ivy League play. The Quakers, Bulldogs and Cornell each have just two league losses and trail Princeton in the Ivy standings.
How it Happened
It was a slow start for both teams, though Yale (11-10, 5-2 Ivy) held a 9-4 advantage after the first seven minutes.
Senior captainKara Bonenbergerprovided a spark with back-to-back buckets to start a string of five straight scoring possessions for the Quakers. Fellow senior captainRenee Buschhit a three, followed by another by freshmanAnna Ross, andBonenberger scored again for a barrage of 12 points in just over two minutes. Senior captainKaty Allenand freshmanMichelle Nwokedithen each scored on driving layups to cap a 16-2 run for a 20-11 lead with 8:40 left in the half.
The lead grew to 31-19 after sophomoreSade Gibbonsdrove the lane and scored at the 3:00 mark. However, Yale ended the half on a 9-2 run to close within 33-28 at the break.
Senior captainKathleen Rocheburied a three to give the Quakers a 39-28 lead in the opening minutes of the second half, but Yale responded with six straight and it was 39-34 at the 16:59 mark.
Penn's defense dominated from there. The Bulldogs scored just four points over the next 14 minutes.
Meanwhile, Nwokedi and Allen combined for all the scoring in a 10-0 run that had the Quakers up 49-34 with 13:50 left.
Yale ended that run, but Penn held the Bulldogs to just one field goal over the next 10:26. When Bonenberger made a jumper with 3:20 to go, the Red and Blue led, 57-38, and cruised to the finish.
Inside the Numbers
Bonenberger recorded her first double-double of the season and seventh of her career with 12 points and a team-high 12 rebounds.
Nwokedi finished with a team-high 13 points and has scored in double figures in four straight games and five of the last six. She also had eight rebounds and a game-high three blocks.
Roche was the third Penn player in double figures with 11 points. Ross added seven points and a team-best three assists, while Allen contributed seven points in 22 strong minutes off the bench.
Penn improved to 40-2 (.952) over the last three seasons when shooting better than 40 percent. The Quakers were an impressive 20-of-47 (42.6%) overall, while Yale was held to 19-of-60 (31.7%) shooting, including 1-of-18 (5.6%) from three.
The Quakers, who entered as the league's worst free throw shooters, were 18-of-21 (85.7%) from the charity stripe and are now 36-of-41 (87.8%) over the last two games. Penn has won 20 of the last 21 games when shooting better than 70 percent from the free throw line.
The Quakers head to Providence, R.I., to take on Brown on Saturday at 6 p.m. The game can be seen on the Ivy League Digital Network (ILDN.tv).
Download: 20 - Yale box.pdf