Nov. 12, 2012
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. - The Virginia women's basketball team plays its first road game of the season, playing at Penn on Monday, Nov. 12 at 7 p.m.
The Cavaliers are coming off a 78-57 victory over James Madison in the season opener. Virginia had four players in double figures including two 20-point performances. Sarah Imovbioh (So., Abuja, Nigeria) scored 21 points in her Cavalier debut. Ataira Franklin (Jr., Bowie, Md.) scored 20. Last season, the Cavaliers had one game in which two players scored 20 points with Franklin and Ariana Moorer each scoring 20 in the ACC Tournament game against Boston College. UVa had six games last year in which four players scored in double digits, including the opener against Appalachian State.
Imovbioh went 8-for-9 from the floor, with her 21 points helping the Cavaliers to outscore JMU 48-6 in the paint.
Imovbioh also pulled in 10 rebounds to start her Cavalier career with a double double. Kelsey Wolfe (Jr., Germantown, Md.) began her career with a double double, with a 12 point-10 rebound performance at Hofstra to open the 2010-11 season. Jazmin Pitts (Jr., Mosley, Va.) had 17 rebounds in that game, which was also her Virginia debut.
Imovbioh's 21 points ties the most by a rookie Cavalier in the season opener. Donna Holt also scored 21 points in her Virginia debut against Maine to open the 1984 season.
Sarah Beth Barnette (R-So., Lexington, Ky.) looked impressive in her debut, coming off the bench to score 10 points with three assists and a block.
Jaryn Graner (Fr., Sewell, N.J.) and Faith Randolph (Fr., Derwood, Md.) also made their collegiate debuts against JMU. The four newcomers combined to score 38 points in the game.
Virginia, who led the ACC in steals last season, had 16 in the game and forced 27 total turnovers. Franklin had five steals. Wolfe added four.
Center Simone Egwu (Sr., Odenton, Md.) was diagnosed last week with a stress reaction in her left shin and is expected to be sidelined for three weeks.
Virginia is making its first-ever visit to the Palestra to take on Penn. The teams have three previous meetings, all in Charlottesville, with UVa leading the series, 3-0.
The Palestra is often called the "Cathedral of College Basketball" having hosted more regular season or post-season NCAA men's basketball games, more visiting teams, and more NCAA tournaments than any other U.S. arena. At the time of its construction, the Palestra was one of the largest arenas in the world. It was one of the first modern steel-and-concrete arenas in the United States and also one of the first to be constructed without interior pillars blocking the view.
The Quakers will be looking for their first-ever win over an ACC opponent. Overall, Penn is 0-9 against the conference. In addition to the 0-3 mark against Virginia, Penn has losses to Duke and Wake Forest, and two losses apiece to Georgia Tech and Maryland.
The Cavaliers will be back at John Paul Jones Arena on Sunday, Nov. 18 when they host Providence at 2 p.m.