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Will the women's team emerge victorious in the Ivy League Tournament? Will the men even make it there on their side? Penn basketball has plenty on the line these next few weeks. 

Photo: Ananya Chandra , Zach Sheldon / The Daily Pennsylvanian

With just a few weeks left before the inaugural Ivy League Tournament for both men’s and women’s basketball, both of Penn’s squads will have meaningful games to come. While the women’s side is essentially a lock for tournament, the men’s team will have to fight its way in over the next two weeks.

Men’s

Jonathan Pollack, Sports Editor:

Two weeks ago I pronounced Penn men’s basketball’s season over, and boy did they make me eat my words. The Quakers have caught fire, roaring back from their 0-6 Ivy start to tie Columbia for fourth with only four games remaining. Penn’s path to the tournament is clear: take down Columbia this coming weekend and win one of their three other games. At 6-8 and with the tiebreaker over Columbia, Penn would be the presumptive fourth seed, unless the Lions run the table in their other games. But given the fact that Columbia is mired in a four game losing streak and still has to play Princeton and Yale, Penn should feel confident in their tourney chances.

Tommy Rothman, Sports Editor:

Zombies! ZOMBIES! Boy, does Pollack sure look stupid. I thought Penn men’s basketball was dead as well, but at least I didn’t write a column. Anyway, the tables have indeed turned, and the Quakers now have a very good chance to sneak into the Ivy League Tournament, and possibly the NCAA Tournament.

Do I expect them to? Who knows. Probably not. It’s a lot closer to 50-50 than a few of my colleagues have spun it, and we’ve seen this team screw up many times. They have it in them to screw up against Columbia and the other teams.

But we’ve also seen now that they have it in them to win. The team has figured it out, if “it” is the concept that outscoring the other team usually nets good results. I’d say we’re in a pretty good place. Don’t be surprised either way, though. And yes, this is a 150-word hedge.

Women’s

Jonathan Pollack, Sports Editor:

To me, Penn women’s basketball has already proven they have what it takes to win the Ivy tournament. They romped their way through the first half of conference play, beating all the teams currently slated to make the tournament. The only major concern that could diminish the Quakers’ chances is the health of senior center Sydney Stipanovich. The co-captain hurt her ankle two weekends ago and has been less effective than usual in recent games. Given how much Penn’s offense runs through her, the Red and Blue need her to be at her best for them to win. However, there is still plenty of time for her to heal and rest up, and with one of the top spots essentially locked down, Penn is sitting pretty.

Tommy Rothman, Sports Editor:

While the men are hoping to sneak into the tournament, for the women the tournament is a massive inconvenience. The Quakers should win the regular season title outright, and if they do, the tournament just gives Princeton, Harvard and the other teams another chance to spoil the party. That being said, Penn is the best team, and the tournament is at the Palestra. It would be a surprise, and a huge disappointment for Penn Athletics, if the women’s hoops squad doesn’t secure that automatic NCAA Tournament bid.

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