Penn women’s basketball is on the outside looking in.
Sitting at just under .500 in the Ivy League, Penn (10-13, Ivy 5-6) faces Cornell (9-13, 4-7) on Wednesday, Feb. 23. The Red and Blue will take the long bus ride to Ithaca, NY in the hopes of continuing their momentum, having beaten Brown on Saturday at the Palestra.
The Big Red currently sits at sixth in the League and could put the final dagger in Penn’s hopes of making Ivy Madness with a win tomorrow.
When the two teams met earlier this month at the Palestra, the Quakers came away with a 71-61 win. The difference-maker in Penn's victory was offensive rebounding and fouls that gave the Quakers extra opportunities to sink shots. Expect these factors to play into the outcome tomorrow with the Red and Blue in need of securing a win.
A key factor in the game will be junior guard Kayla Padilla and her ability to make the crucial plays for the Red and Blue. Most Penn fans have become accustomed to Padilla’s shot-making, but her ability to find the open player will be as important for the Quakers. Across the entire season so far, Padilla has over twice as many assists as any other player on the team with 77 through her 17 games played.
Additionally, sophomore Jordan Obi has been on a tear so far this season, recording her sixth double-double of the season and her third in the last four games on Saturday. For the Quakers to be successful, she will need to continue to knock down shots and grad boards for the Red and Blue.
On the defensive side of the ball, Penn will need to stop junior Shannon Mulroy. The last time these two teams faced off the Mt. Laurel, N.J. native was able to knock in 16 points in just 21 minutes of play.
The Quakers are currently fifth in the Ivy League, just out of a spot in Ivy Madness, which includes the top four teams in the conference. Penn's fate partially lies in the hand of rivals the Princeton Tigers. If Harvard loses to Princeton this Saturday, and Penn beats Cornell for a second time this season tomorrow, the two teams will have the same record going into Penn’s game against Dartmouth on Saturday.
Likewise, if the Quakers are able to come away with two wins this week, a Harvard loss that would catapult them into an Ivy Madness position with one game remaining on the schedule.