PHILADELPHIA, PA. 1/11/2020 – The University of Pennsylvania Quakers and the Princeton Tigers, Penn and Princeton, A Rivalry in Ivy League women’s basketball. Nothing else needs to be said.
Round One goes to the #25 Tigers winning 75 – 55 at the Palestra who took the battle of the boards by a 44 – 25 margin. On the offensive glass it was the Tigers 17 – 6 which led to a 26 – 9 edge in second chance points and, essentially, it was the deciding factor.
“That was the difference,” said Penn Coach Mike McLaughlin. “To their credit, they swarmed the glass on us. They kept the ball alive and had the ball way too many times. It was the multiple attempts that broke our backs. That caught up to us.”
“The mindset for us was that we were not going to hit everything at an away gym and you have to attack the boards,” said Princeton guard Bella Alarie. “We tried to be as relentless as possible and go after everything.”
Alarie recorded her 38th career double-double getting 11 rebounds, 5 offensive, and 25 points. Forward Taylor Baur recorded her collegiate-best in scoring with 15 points and tied her career-mark with 13 rebounds.
Penn freshman guard Kayla Padilla was the leading scorer for Penn and she set a career-high in points scored with 27 points shooting 10 of 14 from the floor, 4 of 7 from beyond the arc. Padilla was ready for her Ivy debut.
“It was super exciting,” Padilla said. “To start Ivy play is one thing, but then to start Ivy play against our rival Princeton was another. That was all the talk this last week as a team. We really expressed how intense and competitive the atmosphere was and it lived up to the experience.”
Tori Crawford added 13 points, a career-best, and a team-high 8 rebounds. Phoebe Sterba reached double figures scoring 11 points.
The Quakers trailed 33 – 30 at halftime. The Tigers took control of the game in the third quarter with a 15 – 4 run in the first 5:47 of the quarter with all points coming from Alarie, Baur, and fellow team leader Carlie Littlefield. The Red and Blue could not make up the difference.
Princeton gets the first game of the series. They do not want to make too much of the win. These rivals will meet again.
“We talked about this being Penn – Princeton and the rivalry, but you also say that this is another game on our schedule,” said Princeton Coach Carla Berube. “If you make it too big, then your emotions can get the best of you.”
“This is the first game of the Ivy League season and we are happy to come out with a win.”
Abby Meyers scored 14 points for Old Nassau.
No time to dwell for Penn (10 – 2, 0 – 1) They will have a short break in the Ivy League part of the schedule, but Big Five rivals Villanova and Temple await the Red and Blue who strives for their first outright city series championship.
“We are playing good teams in Villanova and Temple and we are hoping to close that out and not let this loss define us and move on to those Big Five games,” said Padilla.
Written By: Glenn Papazian