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Many senior athletes had to make different plans due to COVID with some Penn athletes deciding to commit to other schools for their graduate year of eligibility. Credit: Son Nguyen , Eric Zeng, Alexa Cotler

Prior to the Ivy League's announcement granting senior student-athletes graduate eligibility, many Penn athletes solidified transfer plans, in hopes of finishing their careers in action rather than on a practice field. The Daily Pennsylvanian checked in with five former Quakers at their new schools. 

Ryan Betley —  University of California, Berkeley, men's basketball 

During his four years at Penn, Ryan Betley finished 10th all-time in career three-pointers made for the Red and Blue, despite missing an entire season due to injury. The former Quaker averaged 12.8 points and 5.1 rebounds while shooting 43.5 percent from the field during his career at Penn, scoring 944 career points and making 70 starts in 74 total appearances. During his freshman season, Betley was named to the Ivy League Tournament All-Tournament Team and followed that by earning All-Ivy Second Team and All-Big 5 Second Team his sophomore season. 

After transferring to Cal this past season, Betley started in 23 of the 29 games he played in, averaging 8.5 points per game. Betley was a part of a Golden Bears team that finished last in the Pac-12 standings with a 9-20 record. 

Christian Scafidi — Notre Dame, baseball

Christian Scafidi, the 2019 Ivy League Pitcher of the Year, originally planned on completing his baseball career at Penn. However, factors such as the COVID-19 pandemic and the Ivy League’s original ruling that athletes who lost a year of eligibility could not return following graduation altered the former Penn ace’s path. Scafidi drew the attention of Notre Dame, an Atlantic Coast Conference powerhouse. Through the Fighting Irish’s first nine games, Scafidi holds a 1.50 ERA in two starts. Scafidi has also held opponents to a .190 batting average.

Kyle Gallagher — Notre Dame, men's lacrosse

After transferring to Penn from Hofstra after his sophomore year, Kyle Gallagher made an instant impact during his limited time playing for the Red and Blue. During his only full season with the Quakers, the face-off specialist finished the 2019 season with 169 ground balls and won 270 of 432 face-offs, earning him spots on the All-Ivy Second Team, USILA All-American Third-Team, and Inside Lacrosse All-American Third-Team. As a result of his success, Gallagher entered the Penn record books ranked No. 1 in single-season face-offs taken, No. 1 in single-season face-offs won, and No. 2 in single-season ground balls. 

In two games with Notre Dame this season, the former Quaker has recorded two assists, 16 ground balls, and has won 22 of 26 face-offs. 

Kyle Thornton — Notre Dame, men's lacrosse

Kyle Thornton, who was one of the Red and Blue’s best defenders, totaled 59 ground balls and 37 forced turnovers in his Penn career. Thornton was even an All-Ivy Honorable Mention in 2019. Like others that transferred from Penn, Thornton’s original hope was to finish his career with the Quakers while working on his master’s at Penn. However, Thornton wasn’t alone in his ultimate decision to play for the Fighting Irish, as former Penn teammate Kyle Gallagher also made the transition. So far in the 2021 season, Notre Dame has played two games, winning both. Thornton has played a part in those victories with a total of five ground balls accrued already on the young season. 

Gabby Rosenzweig — Duke, women's lacrosse

Arguably the greatest women's lacrosse player in Penn history, Gabby Rosenzweig holds both the single-season and all-time records for points and assists. She accumulated 247 career points to pass former teammate and best friend Erin Barry, before her senior season was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Although Rosenzweig hoped to stay at Penn and play, she ultimately opted to play out her eligibility at Duke in the ACC. 

“That was the hardest choice, deciding to transfer,” Rosenzweig said. 

Down in Durham, N.C., Rosenzweig has notched 11 goals, 11 assists, and 22 points through seven games. Her new team currently sits at 5-2, good for fifth in the ACC. Duke will need to capture more conference victories to move up in the standings, as they are currently 0-2 in the conference. 

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