PHILADELPHIA, Pa. – Friday night’s road game at Penn was a challenge for the Dartmouth women’s basketball team, falling to the home team 65-47.
“Penn is obviously a talented team and in top of the league in recent years, so we know walking on to the Palestra floor that we need to bring our best effort,” said The Gail Koziara Boudreaux ’82 and Family Head Coach Belle Koclanes. “I’m really happy with our first half defensive effort, the team collectively put the game plan into action. I thought we had some really good opportunities early on offensively, but to be able to beat a team like Penn the ball’s got to go in the basket.”
The Big Green entered the contest knowing that scoring points would be key to beating one of the top teams in the league, and took 30 shots but made only nine, a sluggish beginning to the game. Entering the second half, the Quakers led by 14, with 12 points from junior Ashley Russell. In the first four minutes of the third period, Penn went on a 6-0 run and took a 20-point advantage, leading 43-23.
As the road team tried to bridge the gap, the Quakers continued to remain ahead and hold off the Big Green, leading 51-32 at the end of the third quarter. With 3:43 left to play, McKenna drained a three to cut the lead to 58-39 and dropped another trey with 2:20 to go, to bring the score within 20 points.
“Overall, I thought the team played hard and we had great minutes off the bench,” Koclanes said. “Really its about us continuing to build our confidence and prove that we belong in the top of the league, and we have another opportunity to do that tomorrow.”
Two free throws from sophomore Grace Phillips brought the score to 65-47 in the final 30 seconds of play, where the score would remain at the end. Dartmouth had a slow shooting night, with 15-of-54 field goal range baskets made for a shooting percentage of 28, and 33 percent from three.
The Quakers were shooting fairly well with 39 percent from the floor and 31 percent from beyond the arc. Both teams had equal trips to the line and were close in turnovers with 13 for the Big Green and 12 for Penn, but the home team was able to stay ahead for the majority of the game as Dartmouth struggled to make baskets.
The Big Green return to action tomorrow night, taking on Princeton on the road at 5 p.m.