Three takeaways from Penn men’s strong performance in home win over Colgatete

Junior guard Clark Slajchert exploded for a career-high 33 points on 13-for-18 shooting Saturday at the Palestra, lifting Penn past Colgate. (Photo by Erica Denhoff)

Penn turned in its best performance of the season on Saturday, and it paid off in the form of its first win over an opponent in the KenPom top 100 since a February 2020 triumph over Yale.

The Quakers used elite scoring performances from guards Clark Slajchert and Jordan Dingle to earn an 81-69 win over Colgate at the Palestra. The contest marked an unhappy homecoming for Raiders head coach Matt Langel and assistant coaches Camryn Crocker and Trey Montgomery, all of whom had played or coached for Penn.

Colgate, which had beaten Syracuse on the road by 12 earlier in the season, entered Saturday ranked 98th in KenPom.

Now 4-4, the Quakers have won three straight contests.

What can Penn fans take away from a particularly satisfying win?

Read more

Sawyer’s emergence provides silver lining for Penn women in Golden State losses

The Penn women will head home from California dreaming of better days, having dropped two games during their Thanksgiving break but having demonstrated the standout talent of a star freshman.
The trip was a coming-out party for 5-foot-11 guard Simone Sawyer, who is fulfilling her promise as an electric offensive threat. At San Francisco on Monday, Sawyer came off the bench early and started hitting threes, going 6-for-9, to account for her team-leading 18 points in 33 minutes. So coach Mike McLaughlin started her at Southern California, gave her 30 minutes on the floor and got another team-leading 18 points: 6 of 10 from the floor this time, including 4-for-7 from deep, with three assists and four steals.
It’s also good news that the Quakers (1-5) were competitive against two good teams, USF (3-2) and especially USC (5-0). But they’ll have to be better still to reclaim a spot in the top half of the Ivies.

Read more

Three takeaways from Penn men’s overtime win at Lafayette

Penn junior guard Jordan Dingle gave his team a pivotal lift early in the extra frame of the Quakers’ 74-68 win in overtime at Lafayette Tuesday. (Photo by Erica Denhoff)

Penn needed to work overtime to pick up its second win of the season on Tuesday, downing Lafayette 74-68 after an extra five-minute frame.

The end result was probably far closer than the Quakers (2-4) would have liked. Penn had a 10-point lead with five minutes left to play but stalled out on offense at the worst possible time, letting Mike Jordan’s Leopards (1-5) back into the game as the former Penn Ivy Player of the Year sought his first home win as their new coach.

Once in overtime, Jordan Dingle took over for Penn. The junior guard swiped the ball from Lafayette’s CJ Fulton in the first possession of overtime for a breakaway layup, and the Quakers never looked back.

Read more

Takeaways after Penn men notch first win of season at Drexel

Senior swingman Lucas Monroe snared 11 rebounds at Drexel Tuesday night, 10 of them on the defensive end. Defensive boards and turnovers sprang a strong transition game for Penn in a 64-59 win over their 33rd Street neighbors. (Photo by Erica Denhoff)

After an 0-3 start, Penn is off the schneid.

The Quakers used a solid defensive performance to build a 15-point lead over Drexel early in the second half, and after wobbling a bit, made enough plays down the stretch to seal a 64-59 win over their next-door neighbors Tuesday night.

Read more

Penn women comeback falls short at Northwestern

The Penn women knew they weren’t traveling to Chicago in mid-November for the weather.
They were at Northwestern, not a national power but a legitimate Big Ten competitor, to test themselves. A win would be a bonus.
The Quakers didn’t get the win. In fact, they never came closer than the zero-zero tie at tipoff on the way to a 63-55 loss. But they made the game close in the fourth quarter — an 11-point run brought them to within three — and they learned some lessons as they try to improve on last year’s fifth-place finish in the Ivies and overall losing record, a rarity for any team that Mike McLaughlin has coached.’

Read more

What we learned about Penn men in 92-85 defeat at Missouri

Penn junior guard Clark Slajchert’s aggression paid off at Missouri Friday night, propelling him to a team-high 21 points on 7-for-13 shooting from the field and 55% of the Quakers’ free-throw points and attempts. (Photo by Erica Denhoff)

Playing on the road against an SEC opponent for the third consecutive season, Penn went toe-to-toe with Missouri on Friday night at Mizzou Arena in Columbia, but ultimately fell short, 92-85.

The game’s defining sequence came with 5:49 to go in the second half and the Tigers up one, 70-69. Missouri’s best forward, Kobe Brown, got the ball at the left of the free throw circle and unsuccessfully attempted to back down Penn center Max Lorca-Lloyd.

As three Quakers surrounded Brown, the Tigers senior stumbled backwards in the lane. Instead of calling Brown for a travel, the officials signaled for a held ball with the possession arrow favoring Missouri.

The Tigers took advantage of the break, as Nick Honor hit a killer pull-up three-pointer over George Smith in the dying seconds of the shot clock to extend the Missouri lead to four. Penn would get no closer than four points down for the rest of the night.

What did we learn about the Quakers in a solid showing against an opponent ranked 50th in KenPom heading into the game?

Read more

Padilla shines as Penn women outmatch Marist, 65-61, in season opener

The Penn women started their season very, very badly Thursday night at Marist, missing 10 of their first 11 shots.
Then Kayla Padilla reminded everyone why she’s the top scorer in the Ivies and a threat whenever the ball is in play. The senior guard sliced through the Marist defenders or shot over them for 31 points, and the Quakers held on to beat the Red Foxes, 65-61.

Read more

Questions for Penn men after season-opening blowout loss at Iona

Junior guard Jordan Dingle was an All-Ivy first-team unanimous selection and Big 5 scoring champion last season, so his scoring prowess isn’t in question. But Dingle and his teammates must improve significantly on their Monday night shooting performance and shooting struggles from last season’s Ivy slate if Penn is to make its Ivy Preseason Media Poll championship projection a reality. (Photo by Erica Denhoff)

Penn’s Monday night season opener at Iona, the preseason favorite to win the MAAC, was a generally miserable affair after the under-eight media timeout of the first half. The Gaels used a 36-4 run which spanned the end of the first half and beginning of the second half to put the Quakers away and turn the final 12-plus minutes of the game into garbage time.

Things won’t get easier this week for Penn. The Quakers will be double-digit (potentially 15-point-plus) underdogs when they travel to Columbia, Mo. to face Missouri on Friday. They’ll likely be underdogs at home on Sunday against Towson, the preseason favorite to win the CAA and a potential No. 12 seed when March rolls around.

Here are some questions Penn will need to answer as it navigates a difficult first week of the season (and beyond):

Read more