We're still two days out from the biggest Ivy League game of the season for Penn (every game is the biggest one, right, coach Allen?) but it's high time to take a look at who the Quakers will face Friday night when the Brown Bears (8-21, 2-10 Ivy) come to town:
(Megan Soisson/DP file photo)
Previously in Providence. Penn split it's weekend trip to Connecticut and Rhode Island, beating Brown 65-48 — the biggest win of the season for Penn — on Saturday, Feb. 4, after falling to Yale the previous night. Rob Belcore gets the player of the game award, scoring a team-high 17 points with 10 rebounds in 29 minutes. Zack Rosen had 11 points and five assists on the night. Brown's Andrew McCarthy, who averages 10 points per game this season, dropped 20 on the Quakes, cleaning up with 12 rebounds, as well. Reigning Ivy Rookie of the Year, Brown sophomore Sean McGonagill was held to three points in all 40 minutes, and coughed up seven turnovers. From the DP's recap:
“Talk about bouncing back — that’s the magic of the Ivy League,” Belcore said. “That’s what you have to do. That’s what good teams are supposed to do. We’re a senior-led team, [myself], Zack [Rosen], Tyler [Bernardini] and Mike [Howlett]. We’ve been through the ringer for a long time and we’re not going to let this team fold.”
Since then: While the Quakers have rattled off a five game winning-streak, Bruno has picked up five losses — totaling eight-straight Ls. But Brown's fate changed this weekend when it avenged a loss to Columbia in a 94-78 shellacking of the Lions that looked more like the NBA All-Star game than Ivy League basketball. Brown's star McGonagill scored 28 points with eight assists.
A question: Do they get free Clam Chowder when the Bears score 100 points at Pizzitola? Almost, guys. Almost.
Transfiguration: Watch out for McGonagill, who averages 14 points per game. He was banged up in the Quakers win earlier this season, but continued to play with limited effectiveness due to Brown's injury-depleted roster. He hit 5-of-7 threes in the big win over Columbia. In conference play, however, junior guard Matt Sullivan has emerged as Brown's leading scorer. He's shooting 51 percent from three in Ivy games.
Bear necessities: Here's how the two teams stack up, which in several categories is much closer than the records indicate:
- Scoring offense: Penn (2nd) 65.9 ppg, Brown (7th) 62.7 ppg
- Scoring defense: Penn (6th) 65.3 ppg, Brown (8th) 69.6 ppg
- FG%: Penn (3rd) .445, Brown (6th) .411
- FG defense %: Penn (7th) .433, Brown (8th) .451
- Rebounding margin: Penn (6th) -2.9, Brown (7th) -5.5
- Assists/Turnover: Brown (2nd) 1.1, Penn (3rd) 1.1
- Average home attendance: Penn (1st) 4,462, Brown (8th), 1,007
- Violent Crime: Penn (7th) 12.15 crimes per 1000 residents, Brown (4th) 6.84 crimes per 1000 residents.
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