Despite the snow, 2,409 people showed up to watch the Penn victory. Going into last night's game, the Penn men's basketball team was batting 0-for-Philadelphia on the season. But the Quakers snapped their intra-city slump with a 54-46 win over Drexel. The victory broke a four-game losing streak against Philadelphia opponents, which includes three Big 5 losses this season and dates back to Penn's February loss at Villanova last year. The Dragons came to the Palestra without their senior center and co-captain Joe Linderman, who will miss the remainder of the season with chronic back pain. Without Linderman, who averaged 17.2 points per game last year, Drexel's game plan was to control the game's tempo. "We tried to slow it down and make it a possession game," Drexel coach Steve Seymour said. "Our objective was to come in and keep them on the defensive end of the floor. That's where we needed the score to be -- in the mid 50s." And that's exactly where the score was -- for the Quakers. Drexel did a good job controlling the tempo, but shot only 36.7 percent from the floor and grabbed just five offensive rebounds. These problems resulted in the Dragons scoring a paltry 46 points. The Quakers opened the game on a 7-2 run, only to see the Dragons match that run to tie the score at 9-9 with slightly over 10 minutes remaining in the first half. The next five minutes and 10 seconds proved to be all the Quakers would need to bury their University City rivals. Penn went on a 12-0 run in that span, and Drexel never recovered. The Quakers led by at least six the rest of the way. That 12-0 run featured one three-pointer each by freshman David Klatsky and seniors Matt Langel and Michael Jordan. For the game, the three guards scored 10, 12 and 16 points, respectively, and they combined to shoot 13-for-21 from the floor. Impressively, the threesome shot 6-for-9 from behind the arc, highlighted by Klatsky's 3-for-3 sharpshooting. "David is a good shooter from the perimeter, as evidenced by his made shots this evening, but he's been doing that on a regular basis," Penn coach Fran Dunphy said. "David is going to have a terrific career here." Klatsky's double-digit performance was the first of his career. Previously, his highest scoring output was nine points against Lafayette. A surprise participant in Penn's 12-0 first-half run was sophomore forward Dan Solomito. Solomito, who usually plays during garbage time, has only seen the hardwood twice this season. Nevertheless, Dunphy put the team's lone sophomore into the game with 7:39 remaining before halftime. "As [the assistant coaches] go through practice, they have watched some things and have said that Danny deserves an opportunity," Dunphy said. "He took advantage of it. Hopefully down the line, he'll get more opportunities and he'll continue to play well." Playing five minutes, Solomito hit one free throw and also stole the ball once. Drexel answered Penn's 12-0 run with three-pointers from junior forward Mike Kouser and senior guard Bryant Coursey, but Penn freshman forward Ugonna Onyekwe scored to end the Drexel run at six consecutive points, as the Quakers entered halftime with a 27-19 lead. The highlight of the second half, in which both teams scored 27 points, came from Langel. With the Quakers leading 42-31, Langel made a backdoor cut on Drexel guard Tom Dearborn. Klatsky found Langel driving to the hoop, and Langel layed the ball in for his 1,000th and 1,001st career points. "Achieving goals like that isn't something I think about as a basketball player," Langel said. "I've had a great opportunity to play a lot of minutes here at the University of Pennsylvania. That's something that comes along with playing a lot." Langel is the 28th player in Penn basketball history to score 1,000 points in a career. Langel's historic basket put the Quakers up by 13 points. Minutes later, the Quakers still led by 13 when Drexel made a last ditch effort to get back in the ball game. Penn held a 48-35 lead, but Drexel scored six in a row to shave the Quakers' lead to seven. Drexel's comeback was fueled by junior guard Stephen Starks, who came off the bench to score 12 points in the game. "[Starks] has given us that bench production that we hadn't had a couple of weeks ago," Seymour said. "He's really picked us up at the offensive end, and he singlehandedly got us back in the mix." After an Onyekwe basket and a Geoff Owens free throw, Penn took a 51-41 lead, only to see the Dragons cut the lead back to seven after Coursey hit a three with 2:31 left in the game. However, Drexel could only muster two more points in the rest of the contest, giving Penn its first win against a Philadelphia local this season. News and Notes Koko Archibong took a blow to the head and was brought to the hospital after last night's game. Dunphy said that he suspects it is a concussion... It was a game-day decision for Dunphy to sit Frank Brown, who has seen only one minute of action since spraining his ankle in the Golden Bear Classic... Jordan continues to climb the list of most prolific scorers in Penn history. His 16 points against Drexel gave him enough points to pass Herb Lyon and puts him ninth on the all-time Penn career scoring list with 1,345 points... For the second consecutive season, a Quaker has reached the 1,000-point milestone against Drexel. Last season, Paul Romanczuk scored his 1,000th point against the Dragons. He finished his Penn career with 1,179.Comments powered by Disqus
Please note All comments are eligible for publication in The Daily Pennsylvanian.