Coming off two close losses, Penn used a dominating first half on Wednesday night to make sure its third game had a much different outcome.
Shooting efficiently and defending even better, the Quakers defeated Navy, 66-45, in a nonleague game at the Palestra.
The Quakers (1-2) lost their opener, 80-72, at Fairfield, and were coming off Monday's 75-71 double-overtime loss to La Salle.
Navy started the season playing two Atlantic Coast Conference teams, beating Pitt before losing at No. 11 Miami.
Unlike its first two games, when Penn trailed at halftime, this one was all but over after the first 20 minutes. Penn led by as many as 28 points in the first half and held a 43-16 lead at the break.
The Quakers, who shot just 14 for 59 (23.7 percent) from three-point range in the first two games, were 6 of 12 in the first half (but just 1 for 10 in the second half).
Conversely, Navy shot 1 for 10 from beyond the arc in the first half. The Midshipmen also committed 11 first half turnovers, compared to five for Penn.
"We came out really hungry after those two losses — they were really tough on us, and our movement and quick cuts got us those open threes," said Penn senior guard Caleb Wood, who scored 13 points, sharing scoring honors with sophomore guard Ryan Betley.
Wood came off the bench and hit 3 of 4 three-pointers in the first half.
"Caleb Wood coming in and being a guy who is a sniper type, attracts attention, gives us more room," Penn coach Steve Donahue said.
Navy quickly set the tone in a negative way by hitting just 1 of its first 12 field-goal attempts, falling behind, 17-4. It didn't get much better the rest of the way. For the game, the Midshipmen shot 16 for 57 and 2 of 18 from three-point range. Junior point guard Hasan Abdullah had a team-high 8 points.
"Give Penn credit — they played well, and we played very, very poorly right from the start," Navy coach Ed DeChellis said. "We couldn't pass or catch the ball, couldn't dribble, couldn't shoot, and that is a bad recipe for college basketball."
Donahue said he thought that Penn took a step in the right direction against Navy.
"I think we have a chance to be a very good defensive team, a really good team that takes care of the ball, a team that spaces you out," Donahue said. "If we can consistently make shots, I think we are a hard team to play."