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Freshman guard Mataya Gayle, senior forward Jordan Obi, and junior guard Stan Almqvist won Ivy League honors for the 2023-2024 season.

Credit: Weining Ding

Before heading into Ivy Madness after clinching the fourth seed with a 69-67 win over Harvard, three Penn women’s basketball players received All-Ivy awards for their performances this season. Freshman guard Mataya Gayle was named Rookie of the Year, while senior forward Jordan Obi was named to the First Team All-Ivy squad and junior guard Stina Almqvist secured a spot on the Second Team All-Ivy.   

In what has been an up-and-down season for the Quakers, these three players certainly made their mark on the team and are chiefly responsible for the team's chances at a title. Almqvist leads the team in scoring with 15.5 points per game on 44% shooting from the field, followed closely by Obi, who notches an average of 14.7 points per game. Obi also notably became the 25th player to join the 1,000-point club and the seventh-fastest player to achieve the feat during a 77-56 win over Brown.   

However, Obi’s impact goes well beyond scoring. She serves as a team captain and is the heart and soul of the team. She has played a pivotal role in the team's successes, averaging 34 minutes a game this season and dominating on both ends of the floor. Obi’s last two seasons earned her Second Team All-Ivy honors, but this season she was finally able to make it over the hump and secure a spot on the first team.    

As for Gayle, she has willed her way to earning the title of Ivy League Rookie of the Year. Her constant improvement each game and earned trust of coach Mike McLaughlin has given her the opportunity to show what she can do on the court — Gayle has averaged 3.1 assists and 1.5 steals per game along with 14.1 points as the third-leading player in minutes played for the Red and Blue. Gayle's 26 three-pointers across 14 conference games lands her third in the league while also coming top-10 in assists with 3.1 per game. Throughout the course of this season, Gayle has also accumulated seven Ivy League Rookie of the Week honors. Gayle is the first Penn player to win this honor since Kayla Padilla in 2020.   

With the Quakers setting their sights on their semifinal matchup against top-seeded Princeton on Friday, they will need the very best from their All-Ivy players if they hope to defeat a team that they have yet to overcome in 11 games. The latest matchup was a 55-72 loss this past Saturday to close out regular season play. The odds may not be in their favor, but if these awards are any indication of the talent on this Quaker roster, anything is possible.