As we hit the midpoint of the semester, all of Penn Athletics' fall teams now have their seasons well underway. Many players have stood out with strong starts to their campaigns, but who has been the MVP thus far? Our editors tackle the question below.
Brevin Fleischer, Sports Editor:
No discussion of Penn Athletics’ fall sports standouts could possibly be complete without the mention of Penn sprint football’s Eddie Jenkins. The sophomore quarterback is truly a jack of all trades for one of Penn’s most competitive teams.
Through four games, Jenkins has tossed for 875 yards and eight touchdowns, while only throwing one interception. However, when it comes to Jenkins, you can’t just focus on the passing, as the sophomore’s running exploits are equally notable. On the ground, Jenkins has added four more touchdowns to his talley. For those counting at home, that’s 12 total scores, out of the offense’s 19.
Importantly for an MVP candidate, Jenkins’s value transcends the counting stats, as his successes translate directly to victories. Sprint football is currently 3-1, with a second consecutive national championship in its sights. As has been proven in many an MVP race throughout the history of sports, winning matters, and Eddie Jenkins wins.
Jonathan Pollack, Sports Editor:
Penn women's soccer has played a bunch of tight, low-scoring games this year. In those types of contests, it's imperative to have a strong back end to keep you in those games.
And that's exactly what the Quakers have in sophomore goalkeeper Kitty Qu.
The Foster City, Calif. native has been a brick wall for the Red and Blue thus far; through 10 games this year, Qu already has 42 saves, just one fewer than her season total last year. She has posted an 0.875 save percentage and allowed 0.58 goals per game. She also already has four clean sheets this season.
Qu's latest game was perhaps the standout performance of the year: a career-best 11 saves in a 1-0 overtime loss to Columbia. The highlight came when Qu laid out to stop a bullet of a shot early on from 20 yards out. But even on nights where she doesn't put up career numbers, she is a consistent force leading one of the best defensive units in the Ivy League.
Tommy Rothman, Sports Editor:
Penn volleyball's Kendall Covington has been the MVP so far. The Houston native has already racked up 126 kills, second on the team, with a fantastic .358 hitting percentage. She's had some monster games and made several all-tournament teams, even winning a tournament MVP award in the preseason. Covington has also been a huge presence at the net on the defensive side with 49 blocks.
Covington's teammate, Parker Jones, could also make a case for this MVP title. Jones has racked up a ridiculous 186 kills in her rookie season, and that season is still young.
But "K-Cov," as she is called by her teammates, ultimately takes the honor due to her terrific efficiency, as well as her leadership--- she is one of the team's three captains.
Reina Kern, Associate Sports Editor:
Kevin Monogue is a force to be reckoned with. He is quick, and he is competitive.
Previously in his 2016 campaign, he earned the title of cross country Ivy League Heps Team champion beside his fellow Quakers.
In the 2017 season, Monogue earned an NCAA outdoor qualifying spot in the 10,000-meter and was also named USTFCCCA All-Academic. And his high level of performance has only carried on into the fall.
Recently at the Paul Short Run Invitational, Monogue led the way for Penn men’s cross country individually with a time of 23:56 in the 8K, helping the team to a fourth-place finish overall. This was the toughest competition for the team so far this season.
With his big finish, the Quakers finished above Navy who previously held the No. 2 spot in the Mid-Atlantic Region.
He also recently placed third at the Mainline Invitational in the four mile with a 19.34.8, followed by teammates Chris Luciano, Patrick Hally and Ryan Renken. Monogue has consistently stood out not only among his teammates, but also among Ivy League runners — only one runner across the league has posted a faster 8K time than Monogue this fall.
Because of Monogue’s great performances, the Quakers currently sit at a record-high second in the Mid-Atlantic region above schools such as Penn State, Rutgers and Villanova.
They could rise up even further if he continues.