While the Quakers Ivy title chances are slim, they will have some say in who wins. With the Penn women's basketball team's record at 4-5 in the Ivy League, Quakers can pretty much count themselves out of the running for the league championship. With five games to go in the season, the Quakers (8-13, 4-5 Ivy League) can only hope to equal last year's overall mark of 13-13. However, with all five games against Ivy opponents, they can better last year's Ivy record of 8-6 by one game if they win out. Sophomore Diana Caramanico sees a slight chance of winning the league. "I give us a 10 to 20 percent chance," Caramanico said. "I'm not being pessimistic about how our team will play, but so much depends how the other teams fare. We need a small miracle." · Penn can play the role of spoiler starting this weekend when the team faces Harvard on Friday and Dartmouth on Saturday. Harvard (8-12, 5-4) also faces an uphill climb to win its fourth consecutive Ivy League title, but Dartmouth (14-7, 7-2) is currently in second place in the standings. The Big Green were tied for first in the Ivy League with Princeton until Columbia upset them last weekend 62-55. The Tigers are now in sole possession of first place. The Lions are 5-16 overall and 2-8 in the Ivies. Their win was only their fourth in the history of the Dartmouth-Columbia series. If Princeton wins the league, it will be the Tigers' first championship in 14 years -- Princeton shared the 1984-85 title with Brown. If Dartmouth takes the crown, the championship will be its first in four years and 11th overall. The two powerhouses face off on Friday at Princeton. · The Red and Blue lost to these same Ivy opponents two weeks ago in a pair of tight contests on the road. Against the Big Green, the Quakers played a close game through much of the contest and went into the half down by two. Penn did not score for the last 1:38 of the game, however, and lost to Dartmouth, 77-63. The game against the Crimson was even closer. The Quakers took a two-point lead into the half on a last second three-pointer by junior guard Mandy West. Penn held on to the lead until there were eight minutes left in the game. At that point, the Quakers turned the ball over twice and saw Harvard score six points in a row. The Quakers kept it close and were down by only one with 13 seconds to go, but sophomore Erin Ladley missed a last-second shot that would have sent the game to overtime. · Diana Caramanico is this week's Ivy League Player of the Week. She scored 33 points against both Brown and Yale and recorded her 500th career rebound against the Bears. She is also one point away from totaling 1,000 for her career and is on pace to become the first Quaker -- man or woman -- to score 2,000 career points. Caramanico received the player of the week award only two weeks after teammate West won the prize. Harvard and Dartmouth are the only other teams in the Ancient Eight to have two different players win the award this season. Caramanico leads the league in both scoring and rebounding. She averages 28.1 points in Ivy games and 22.6 overall. Her closest competitor, teammate Mandy West, scores 19.1 in Ivy action and 19.7 overall. She also brings down 12.4 boards a game, whereas Columbia's Shawnee Pickney, who is second in the league, only tallies eight per contest. Do these tremendous numbers make Caramanico the Ivy League Player of the Year? "A lot will be determined by how we finish in the standings," Penn coach Julie Soriero said. "The player of the year is many times the player who best leads her team down the stretch. If Diana finishes strong and the team finishes strong, and other players stumble, she could certainly win." · Saturday's game versus Dartmouth will be marked with emotion for the Quakers. First, it is senior night for co-captain Sue Van Stone, Penn's only fourth-year player. The game will also be Soriero's last home game at the Palestra. Soriero is resigning at the end of the season after coaching the Quakers for 10 years. "The game will be emotional for me at least, walking off the Palestra floor for the last time," Soriero said. "The team just has to stay focused on the game like we have been doing since I made the announcement."Comments powered by Disqus
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