PHILADELPHIA--After taking the eventual national champion Northwestern to an epic double-overtime finish in the NCAA semifinal, Penn was ranked No. 2 in both the final Inside Lacrosse media and IWLCA coaches polls.
The Quakers (15-3)were undefeated through the majority of the season and ranked at No. 3 during that time. After dropping back-to-back games, the Red and Blue entered the tournament as the No. 4 seed, but No. 5 in the polls. Penn battled through the first and second rounds and clinched its third consecutive final four berth with a dramatic overtime win over Duke in the quarterfinal.
The heart-stopping action didn't end there. In the semifinal game, the Quakers were down four goals to the four-time national champion, Northwestern,with only six and a half minutes to play. A free position goalfrom Samantha Bird cut the deficit and then with three minutes to play, the Quakers rattled off three more goals to the tie game and push overtime. Though rookie Erin Brennan scored in the overtime period, Northwestern answered and then closed the door on Penn with a goal in the sudden death period.
That performance along with a solid season dominating opponentsthanks tothe nation'sleading defense, the Quakers were unanimously selected as the No. 2 team in the 2009 season's finalpolls.