Penn women’s basketball falls flat at Temple in 61-47 defeat

Well, that was ugly.
Two days after the Penn women’s strong win at Merrimack, they had their weakest game of the season at Temple, losing 61-47.
Yes, the Owls threw a frustrating, fast-handed defense at them, but the Red and Blue had the larger role in the loss, shooting a meager 28% from the field (to the Owls’ 38%) and committing 28 turnovers (leading to 31 — just over half — of Temple’s points).

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Quakeaways from Penn men’s basketball’s 81-66 loss to No. 16 Kentucky

PHILADELPHIA — Clark Slajchert took a quick dribble as Kentucky’s Reed Sheppard flew by, freeing the senior up for a wide open three from the wing he routinely hits.

If it went down, it would have pushed Penn to a 49-47 lead over the Associated Press No. 16 Wildcats with 15 minutes to play, completing a comeback from 16 points down.

The shot looked good but came up a little short. It was a microcosm of the afternoon for the Quakers, who gave Kentucky fits for the better part of 30 minutes in what wound up being an 81-66 loss.

Despite having the ball with a chance to tie or go ahead three times in the second half, Penn (6-5) never could quite get over the hump against the Wildcats. A 9-0 Kentucky run around the under-eight media timeout, capped by an open Antonio Reeves three, pushed the Wildcats’ lead from four points to 13 and put the game out of reach.

What could Penn fans take away from a solid showing against one of the most decorated programs in college basketball?

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Jordan Obi shines as Penn women’s basketball beats Merrimack, 71-62

Senior forward Jordan Obi led Penn to a 71-62 win at Merrimack Friday night. (Penn Athletics)
At this point in her career, Penn forward Jordan Obi doesn’t have to open her mouth to trash-talk. Anywhere inside 15 feet, her body declares: The ball’s right here, the rim’s right there, and you can’t do a damn thing to stop me.
But is it trash talk if it’s true?

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Quakeaways heading into Penn men’s basketball’s showdown with No. 16 Kentucky

Senior guard Clark Slajchert enters Penn’s tilt versus Kentucky averaging 19.3 points on 50% shooting through 10 games this season. (Photo by Erica Denhoff)

After taking a gut-punch loss to La Salle on Saturday, Penn responded by easily brushing aside Division III Fairleigh Dickinson-Florham on Wednesday at the Palestra, 111-57.

As is expected in a game against a Division III team, Penn could give regulars like Nick Spinoso, Tyler Perkins and Clark Slajchert light workloads. Slajchert scored 17 points on eight shots in just 15 minutes of action; he got virtually the entire second half off.

By the end of the evening, 14 different Quakers had scored. Penn also hit a program-record 21 three-pointers.

There aren’t many meaningful Quakeaways one can take away from a Division III tune-up game. But there’s certainly much to mull over ahead of Penn’s big-time game on Saturday at the Wells Fargo Center against Associated Press No. 16 Kentucky.

Maybe these can be Palestra Ponderings on a possible path to victory instead.

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Penn women’s basketball’s comeback falls short at Villanova

You’re playing at Villanova, which has beaten you 45 out of 48 times. You’ve been behind all game, your top scorer is struggling, your hot-shooting freshman guard is on the bench in foul trouble, and a 9-0 Nova run puts you 16 points down in the third quarter.
Looks bleak. But the Penn women nearly pulled off the upset Tuesday night, ultimately falling to Villanova, 68-62.

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Penn women’s basketball trounced at No. 23 Marquette, 87-52

The clock on women’s college basketball games runs 40 minutes, and for the first 10 on Sunday, the Penn Quakers looked like they belonged on the same court as the No. 23 Marquette Golden Eagles. Penn even had the lead for a few ticks.
After 10 more minutes and a 10-2 run for Marquette, the differences were more clear. Marquette has a potent, balanced offense and a stingy defense, while Penn has some talent and some work to do.

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Quakeaways from Penn men’s basketball’s 93-92 loss to La Salle

For 45 minutes on Saturday, Penn played gorgeous and free-flowing basketball against La Salle.

Penn’s reward for its efforts? A spot on the wrong end of a SportsCenter Top 10 moment.

The Explorers’ Khalil Brantley banked in a three-pointer from nearly halfcourt as the overtime buzzer sounded, sending Penn to a brutal 93-92 loss in the third-place game of the Big 5 Classic at the Wells Fargo Center.

Clark Slajchert hit what should have been a game-winning layup with four seconds left in overtime, which counted as the final two points of his 33-point scoring effort, tying a career high. Penn (5-4, 1-2 Big 5) defended La Salle’s desperation scramble well, with George Smith getting an outstretched arm right in Brantley’s face.

Fate had other plans for Penn.

Zooming out, Quakers fans learned plenty about their team on Saturday. Such as how…

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Penn women’s basketball dominates paint to beat La Salle, 79-71

It makes sense that on the night of Floor Toonders’ return from the injury that kept her off the court for the season’s first six games, her Penn Quakers would control the inside.
But the 6-foot-4 senior forward came in for just four minutes and made no plays; it was her shorter teammates who made their inches and aggressiveness count in beating La Salle Wednesday at the Palestra, 79-71.

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Quakeaways from Penn men’s basketball’s 84-79 overtime loss to Belmont

Senior guard Clark Slajchert registered 21 points on 7-for-21 shooting and seven assists in 43 minutes in Penn’s 84-79 overtime loss to Belmont Saturday. (Photo by Erica Denhoff)

PHILADELPHIA — Penn has developed a knack for playing games down to the wire in less than ideal circumstances.

Winning those games? That’s been a different story.

The Quakers rallied from 12 points down in the second half to force overtime against Belmont on Saturday but never led in the extra session en route to a tough 84-79 loss in the Cathedral of College Basketball Classic.

Penn (4-3) had the ball down three points with about 17 seconds to go in overtime but couldn’t get a potential tying three-pointer up in the air after a broken play led to a backcourt violation; junior forward Nick Spinoso, who was mostly brilliant on Saturday, was charged with the turnover.

Close games like the ones Penn has played recently — at Maryland Eastern Shore, versus Lafayette, and now versus Belmont — have a ton of variance, and frankly, are often decided by luck. Penn wouldn’t have even gotten to overtime if not for Belmont’s Isaiah Walker bricking a pair of free throws with 3.3 seconds left to play in regulation in a tied game.

But there are some key signals Penn fans can identify through the noise, such as how …

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