NEW YORK, N.Y. Senior Kelly Scott's career-best 22 points and senior Carrie Biemer's 20 points led the University of Pennsylvania women’s basketball team as the Quakers held off St. Francis (N.Y.), 62-49, in the New Years Eve matchup in Brooklyn Heights, N.Y. Wednesday.
Penn (3-7) trailed by seven early on, but led by 13 at the half for its biggest lead of the season. St. Francis (1-11) though, clawed back to within two with 10:25 left before the Quakers put the game away for the team's third win in four games.
The Terriers got off to a quick start, scoring an early 10-3 lead five minutes into the game. Aided by two of Scott's career-tying five three-pointers, Penn scored the game's next nine points, taking a 12-10 lead with 11:24 left in the first half.
With St. Francis up one, 16-15, two minutes later, Penn went on another 9-0 run. Scott squeezed four points in between two Biemer threes for a 24-16 lead with 6:53 to go in the half.
The Quakers had one more first half 9-0 run left in them. After a three-point play pulled St. Francis to within 30-26 with 2:29 left until the half, Scott hit a three, Biemer made a jumper and sophomore Caroline Nicholson knocked down two free throws on three successive possessions. After forcing a turnover, freshman Tyler Cumbo took an inbounds pass and went coast-to-coast, hitting a running layup as the first half buzzer sounded for a 39-26 halftime lead.
Biemer and Scott scored all but three of the Quakers' points in the second half, but an early drought allowed the Terriers back into the game. Penn was without a field goal until senior Anca Popovici hit a baseline jumper with 11:31 remaining. By that time St. Francis had closed the gap to 44-40.
With Penn leading 46-44, Scott nailed two straight three-pointers to spark the Quakers' final big run of the day. The 11-2 outburst gave Penn a 57-46 edge with 3:43 left. The Red and Blue held St. Francis to just three points the rest of the way to close out the win.
Biemer led the team with seven rebounds. Senior Katarina Lackner led the team with a career-best four assists, while adding six boards to go along with her six points.Sophomore Erin Power contributed five rebounds and three assists and Cumbo had eight points and three assists.
It was the third time this year the Quakers held their opponent to under 50 points as the Terriers shot just 17.6 percent (3-17) from three-point range and forced 19 turnovers. In the last five games, Penn has forced an average of just under 20 turnovers per game.
Penn will hit the hardwood again Friday when they host Big 5 rival Temple at 7 p.m.
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