By Matt Leon

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The biggest game of the Ivy League’s women’s basketball season is tonight at Jadwin Gym.

The University of Pennsylvania will visit Princeton University in the regular season finale for both teams. The winner claims the Ivy League title and earns an automatic berth into the NCAA Tournament.

“Our team is excited,” Penn head coach Mike McLaughlin tells KYW Newsradio. “They are embracing the challenge. Worked really hard to this point. You know we’re keeping it in a really small box, 40 more minutes to have an opportunity to win the championship is something they are really hoping for here.”

Listen to the entire interview with Penn’s Mike McLaughlin:

 

Truth be told, both these teams should get into the NCAA Tournament on merit, regardless of tonight’s outcome, given their similar, very impressive resumes. Penn and Princeton are both 23-4 overall and 12-1 in the Ivy League. Princeton has an RPI of 33, Penn’s is 36. But the Ivy League has never gotten two teams in the tourney, so the team that falls short tonight will have a lot of anxious moments waiting for the field to be unveiled next week.

These teams met for the first time this season back on January 9th at the Palestra. The Quakers winning that game, 50-48

“I thought we defended them (in the first match-up),” McLaughlin says. “I thought we had control of the tempo throughout the game. I think that’s important for our team. So that’s going to be something we’re going to have to really emphasize again tonight. They have the ability to really score the ball, so we’re going to have to hopefully keep them off rhythm. And I think we’re going to have to probably score the ball a little bit better than we did the first time, because we’re expecting them to be able to score the ball tonight. But tempo’s really important for us. I think that’s been our success all year. When we’ve controlled the tempo, we’ve had our most success.”

Tonight’s game will tip-off at 5:30. The Penn/Princeton men’s game will follow.