by Erik Hubbard

Friday night basketball games are one of the most highly anticipated events of the year for students of Inter-Ac schools, and this past Friday night was a big one.

The game, however, did not turn out the way the women of the Penn Charter basketball team planned. Dejected is probably one of the best words to describe their feeling after a 65-45 beating by the Patriots of Germantown Academy on their home court. GA on the other hand, left the Graham Athletics Center with nothing but confidence, as they are the leaders of the Inter-Ac.

Then again, what else is new? GA has won 12 straight titles, dating back to 1999, and two consecutive PA Independent School State titles.

While this may be the case, PC should not be written off just yet. This Inter-Ac season is still very young and the Lady Quakers are a seasoned, athletic, and all-around very talented team. They have an array of talent and are led by three Division 1 recruits.

6’ 0” senior guard Briana Butler is an extremely versatile player. Give her space beyond the arc, and you can count it. But don’t come too close, because she will use her athleticism to blow by you into the lane and finish at the rim.

Diana Thomas-Palmer, a 6’ 1” junior forward, is a dynamic post player with the ability to face up. Along with her offensive tools, she is able to draw multiple defenders, which allows the rest of the floor to open up.

Senior Aleesha Powell is a quick guard who can beat you off the dribble and from long range, as she has a quick release.

What makes this team so successful? Athleticism, according to Coach Diana Caramanico.

“They run the floor and use their athleticism very well,” says Caramanico, “They take advantage of their strengths and they give 100% effort in every game.”

Along with talent leading the way, the Quakers have a multitude of leaders on this squad. Tri-captains Aleesha, Briana, and Kendall Stokes, a senior forward, all have very different styles of leadership that allows the team to mesh. Not only are the seniors leading the way, but Thomas-Palmer and junior guard MaryKate O’Brien step up as leaders as well.

When asked about her two juniors, Coach Caramanico said, “We are blessed to have them, they may not be captains but they demonstrate excellent leadership on and off the court as well.”

This is a team that is built to win, and if you are a fan of the Lady Quakers, mark down Feb. 8 on your calendars. It’ll be a rematch at GA. With the chance to end GA’s 12 consecutive Inter-Ac titles streak on the line, the result of the match-up could be very different from last Friday’s.

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