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The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, February 23, 7 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Levien Gym (3,400) -- Manhattan, New York. Television: None. Home Record: Penn 4-5, Columbia 4-6. Away Record: Penn 3-10, Columbia 5-7. Neutral Record: Penn 0-3, Columbia 1-0. Conference Record: Penn 4-4, Columbia 2-7. Series Record: Penn leads, 137-85.
GAME NOTES: The Penn Quakers seek to extend their win streak to three in a row on Saturday night as they close out a four-game road trip against fellow Ivy League member Columbia at Levien Gym in Manhattan.
On Friday night, the Quakers were in Ithaca where they took down the Cornell Big Red in a 79-71 final, marking the first time this season that Penn has been able to put together back-to-back victories. The win also moved the Quakers to an even 4-4 in conference play, which means they are now fifth in the standings.
As for the Lions, they've fallen to just 2-7 against the rest of the Ancient Eight and that has them in a tie with Dartmouth for last place in the standings. Columbia hosted Princeton on Friday night and suffered a 65-40 setback, marking its third straight loss and the seventh in the last eight games overall.
Penn won the first meeting of the season at The Palestra earlier this month, 62-58, which means the all-time series now favors the Quakers by a count of 137-85.
Tony Hicks erupted for a career-high 29 points on Friday night, scoring 15 points within the first six minutes of the eventual eight-point win against Cornell at Newman Arena. Hicks finished the night shooting 5-of-6 behind the 3-point line and 11-of-18 from the floor overall, the team hitting on 10-of-19 beyond the arc overall. Miles Cartwright filled his stat line with 15 points, nine assists and six rebounds as the team hit on an impressive 54.9 percent from the floor overall.
Hicks, who is scoring just 8.5 ppg on the season overall as he shoots 36.3 percent from the floor, has boosted his league average to 13.1 ppg following last night's effort. Cartwright checks in with 13.3 ppg in league action as well, but they are the only active players in double figures at the moment for a team generating 64.2 ppg versus the rest of the conference through eight games.
Columbia held a brief three-point lead in the first half of the meeting against Princeton last night, but the hosts ended up making just eight field goals in the first half and another eight in the second, en route to the lopsided setback. The only player in double figures for the Lions was Maodo Lo with 15 points on 6-of-11 shooting from the floor, the only one to have made more than a pair of field goals as the team hit on just 34.0 percent from the field and 3-of-17 beyond the arc.
Part of the problem for the Lions last night was that leading scorer Brian Barbour (11.9 ppg) was held scoreless during his nine minutes of action, which means he has now been held to eight points or less in each of the last five outings. Steve Frankoski (10.4 ppg) also made very little impact for the program on Friday night, even though he is the top 3-point threat for Columbia with his 48.3 percent accuracy out on the perimeter.
Chances are the Quakers will not get another performance from Hicks like he had last night, but at the very least Columbia will now have to keep a closer eye on him which should open up avenues for others on the visiting team.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Penn 68, Columbia 62
02/23 11:08:31 ET