Just six minutes and change into the Golden Eagles' regular season opener against St. Bonaventure while we were still crossing Valley Fields to reach the game site, a roar went up from the crowd indicating that Marquette had scored. I feared that we had missed the only goal of the game, but my concern that Rachael Sloan's header would stand alone was soon alleviated as Taylor Madigan found the net at the 14:30 mark. Rachel Brown then notched an unassisted goal giving the Golden Eagles a comfortable 3-0 lead a scant half hour into the match.
It appeared that the Bonnies' goalkeeper took extra practice during the halftime intermission, but in fact starter Kathryn Kerkman was yanked and her backup was getting warmed up. Replacement Christina Sarokan stopped the hemorrhaging and made 4 saves, but the goal deficit was too much for Bonaventure to overcome. Their offense had a fire lit under it coming out of halftime, but was still over matched by the Marquette's defense which never allows the ball near the goal: Golden Eagle keeper Sophie Schunk only needed one save to continue her shutout minutes streak.
As the match wound down, the wind was clearly out of St. Bonaventure's sails. Mary Luba's goal scored with just under 2 minutes to play was icing on the cake.
Next up: Fourth ranked Florida State Seminoles at Valley Fields, Sunday at 1 pm.