In a thriller, senior guard Anna Ross dictated exactly how the script would end: with the ball in her hands. It was her last-second bucket that proved the difference as Penn eked past Villanova 79-77.
Though most programs would hesitate to refer to a two-season title hiatus as a drought, the mentality for Penn gymnastics is clear. It’s “championship-or-bust time” for the Red and Blue, and the 2018 squad is more than ready to do so.
Call them the "Swaggy Six," or the "Super Sophs", or the "Bars Bunch"; no matter the alias, Penn gymnastics will be tough to beat this year due to a record-breaking crop of sophomores on the bars.
The seasons of both the men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams have been defined by a series of ebbs and flows. The men sit at 4-4, the women at 4-5, and both teams have blown out and been blown out by their competitors.
Of course, braving the sub-zero temperatures and seemingly endless bus rides was not purely for fun. This “vacation” was actually a NCAA-sanctioned international tour, which is allowed once every four years. And, with this being the lucky year, coach Jack Wyant took his squad north for the training retreat.
After back injuries during her sophomore year forced senior Emily Shugan to end her career as a gymnast, she has since leaped into a new role on the team: student assistant coach.
It's not that Nwokedi's impact on each game has diminished. Rather, coach Mike McLaughlin and the team have needed her to play a new role this season. And, according to McLaughin, the changes in the past few weeks have been due to her growth in that new role.
It is clear that if the team is to reach its full potential and win the Ivy or ECAC Championship, a significant part of the credit should go to the two returning co-captains, and the attitude and togetherness they bring to the program.
After finishing last out of four teams in its first meet of the season, the Lindsey Ferris Invitational, with a relatively low score of 190.375, Penn gymnastics (1-2, 0-1 Ivy) hopes to bounce back this upcoming weekend as it travels to New Haven to take on Yale, both teams' first one-on-one Ivy League matchup in 2018.
A year after opening the 2017 season with an impressive second-place finish at the Lindsey Ferris Invitational, Penn gymnastics struggled to match that effort this time around, finishing in last place with a score of 190.375.
In this week's edition of Is Stat So?, we look at several individual and team records that were broken this weekend, as well as a few key numbers that allowed men's squash and women's basketball to emerge victorious.
Following the sweeps, two stars of the Penn men’s and women’s basketball programs, sophomore forward AJ Brodeur and freshman center Eleah Parker, were named Ivy League Player of the Week for their contributions.
Just a week after freshman Andrew Douglas’ comeback win to beat No. 6 Rochester, Penn needed another ninth game win to beat Yale 5-4. Meanwhile, Penn’s women fell to the Elis by the same score. Against Brown on Sunday, both teams eliminated any chance for a dramatic ending by sweeping the Bears 9-0.
Both Red and Blue squads struggled in their final Ivy League meet of the regular season. The Quakers’ men fell to Harvard, 181-108, while the women fell respectively to Brown and Harvard by scores of 178-119 and 197-100.
Penn fencing had an up and down weekend against some of the top fencing programs in the country.
The Quakers (11-4 for both men and women) had a busy weekend in State College, Pa. The men and women defeated North Carolina and Haverford but fell short to Columbia, Penn State, and Duke.
After Penn women’s basketball lost to arch-rival Princeton last Saturday, the team rebounded spectacularly this weekend, defeating Cornell and Columbia in consecutive weekends behind the stellar play of Eleah Parker.
The Quakers started off a little slow, but outplayed Columbia for the final 35 minutes of the game en route to a largely comfortable 70-51 win. The night before, The Red and Blue took down Cornell by a score of 68-48 to sweep the New York Ivies. Against the Lions, Penn (8-5, 2-1 Ivy) was led once again by another dominant performance from freshman Eleah Parker who set a new career high with 22 points.
Penn women’s basketball put the rest of the Ivy League on notice with Friday’s 68-48 home victory against Cornell. The Quakers, while not playing a perfect game, took a step in the right direction with their first Ivy victory of the young season.
From the opening tip — which Penn won and led to senior Lauren Whitlatch’s first three — the Quakers dominated Cornell physically all over the court on the way to a 68-48 win.
The absence of the Brown's men's swimming from the meet on Jan. 13 will change the approach that the Quakers plan to take in deciding this weekend’s lineups.