Penn showed Navy tonight why it is the defending Ivy League champion by sinking 62 percent of its shots in the second half en route to an 82-66 victory over the Mids at Halsey Gymnasium.
The Quakers pulled away from a four-point halftime lead and won going away for their second victory against no losses. Navy lost its first game of the season after two victories.
Senior forwards Tim Smith and Tony Price shared the task of guarding Navy's leading scorer, Kevin Sinnett. Sinnett, averaging 24.5 points coming into the game, got off only six shots, and finished with eight points.
But it was the offensive play of Quaker center Matt White that turned a close game into a rout. White, a Bethesda graduate of Choate prep school, was not recruited as a high schooler.
The 6-foot-9 senior did not take a shot in the first half, but made up for that by sinking all eight of his second-half attempts.
Smith scored 18 of his 24 points in the first half to guide the Quakers to a 38-34 lead. His layup tied the score at 22 with seven minutes remaining, then the Quakers reeled off the next six points to take a permanent lead at 28-22.
The visitors outhustled the Mids all evening and were rewarded with easy layups and unmolested jump shots.
Eight of Penn's first nine baskets in the second half were layups, two on offensive rebounds by White. The visitors constantly put up second and third shots.
Navy guard Chuck Greene (24 points on 12-of-16 shooting) took up the slack for Sinnett. Greene made four straight shots to match the Quaker layups and keep Navy just four points down.
But then things fell apart for the home team. Two air balls, three turnovers, an offensive foul and a Penn steal in eight Middie possessions limited them to two points over a five-minute span. Meanwhile, the Quakers ran off 14 points -- eight by White -- to assume a commanding 64-48 lead with 9:01 left in the game.