10.18 Weekend Preview: Fall Break Edition

The only opportunity to cheer for MU over Fall Break is to join the striped bibs volleyball crowd in the McGuire Center. - Maggie Bean/MarquetteImages.com

Only one home match this weekend, so we'll go in chronological order to preview what's going on.

#25/#20 Men's Soccer (8-3-1, 4-0-0 Big East)

Boy, that looks awfully nice with those rankings from Soccer America and the NSCAA back in there. The Golden Eagles are 4-0-0 in league play and have won five out of their last six matches while only giving up three goals in the process. C. Nortey has installed himself as a candidate for Offensive Player of the Year in the Big East with all four league game winning goals for Marquette. As great as Nortey has been, MU will need other scorers to step up. In three of the Big East matches this season, Nortey's goal was the only goal of the match. Louis Bennett II is second on the team with three goals, but he hasn't found the net since September 21 against Loyola. Something to keep an eye on: Sebastian Jansson and Jake Taylor have missed each of the last two matches, and Adam Lysak was the only player to come off the bench against Creighton last Saturday, switching exclusively with Kelmend Islami.

Match 13: at Providence (8-2-2, 3-1-0 Big East)

When: Saturday, October 19, at noon Central time
Where: Ray Treacy Track's turf field, in Providence, Rhode Island
Audio/Visual: PC's website says the turf field at the track is new, so there's no streaming video for you. There are live stats, and those are over here.
Twitter Updates: @MarquetteSoccer

The Friars reeled off a seven match unbeaten streak to open their season and have only slipped up twice in their last five matches. One of those was to nationally ranked Georgetown, so you can't really blame them, unless you want to factor in that Providence was also ranked at the time. That loss to the Hoyas was last weekend, so they've slipped out of the national rankings for now. That 3-1-0 mark in league place has them tied for second place in the Big East, and they'd like nothing more than to take three points off the league leading Golden Eagles.

Freshman Julian Gressel leads PC in goals with four, which has him tied for eight most in the Big East. Fellow freshman Dominik Machado has three assists to lead the Friars and tie him for 10th most in the conference. Keasel Broome sounds like a James Bond villain's name, but he's actually the Providence keeper. He's got his goals-against average just under 1 per 90 minutes, but he's got the second worst save percentage in the Big East at .714. Part of that can be blamed on the Friars keeping balls away from him, as he has the second fewest saves as well.

Volleyball (11-5, 3-1 Big East)

Marquette's first loss of the conference schedule came at the hands of the Creighton Bluejays last time out. Now they sit in a tie for second place, half a game back of current league leader Xavier. Standout freshman Autumn Bailey struggled against Creighton, so her kills average has slid back to "just" 3.93 per set, which still leads Marquette. MU has two hitters in the top 10 in the league in hitting percentage: Lindsey Gosh (.314, 10th) and thanks to her .500 day against the Bluejays, Meghan Niemann (.331, 7th). Setter Elizabeth Koberstein is still the engine that makes things go for Marquette, averaging a Big East leading 11.56 assists per set.

Match 17: vs DePaul (15-3, 1-3 Big East)

When: Saturday, October 19, at 7pm Central
Where: Al McGuire Center
Audio/Visual: All home matches have LIVE FREE STREAMING VIDEO, and in this case, Patrick Reed will be doing the PBP while former MU standout Ciara Jones provides the analysis. Live stats will be here.
Twitter Updates: @MarquetteVB

This is the first return match in the 16 match round robin Big East schedule for the Golden Eagles. The first contest with DePaul went five sets, with two of those sets having to go to extra points for a decision. Marquette dropped both of the sets that went to extra points, so you can be sure that head coach Bond Shymansky is going to stress jumping on the Blue Demons early and often. Fun Fact: The first match with MU broke up DePaul's season opening 13 match winning streak and stopped DePaul from tying the longest winning streak in program history. I wonder if they're annoyed?

DePaul won their last match, a non-conference bout with UW-Green Bay, which gave them an undefeated record in non-conference play for the first time in program history. Unfortunately, that hasn't translated to wins in the Big East, as they currently sit a half game out of last place. Abbie Fleener and Vesela Zapryanova are the stars for the Blue Demons, with Fleener holding a Player of the Week award and a Weekly Honor Roll appearance, and Zapryanova being named to the Honor Roll twice. They're 1-2 in kills on the team, with Zapryanova leading the way at 3.71/set. Colleen Smith is the second best setter in the league with 10.57 assists/set, and Allison Rooks anchors the back line with 3.66 digs/set.

#10/#20 Women's Soccer (13-3-0, 6-0-0 Big East)

Marquette has allowed two goals in their last seven matches. I have nothing further here, as you just read a recap earlier today and a preview yesterday.

Actually, I'll add this: A win clinches a bye in the Big East quarterfinals. A Georgetown loss or tie in their match against Creighton in addition to a Marquette win means Marquette wins the regular season title for the fifth consecutive season. No pressure.

Match 17: at DePaul (10-2-2, 4-1-1 Big East)

When: Sunday, October 20, at 1pm Central
Where: Wish Field, in Chicago, Illinois
Audio/Visual: There's streaming video if you want to give DePaul money. Live stats will be here.
Twitter Updates: @MUWomensSoccer

DePaul sitting in a tie for second place is one of the reasons that Marquette can clinch a first round bye with a win. The Blue Demons already went to Georgetown and came away with a draw, so getting to play the other top contender in the league at home is a huge deal for them at this point.

The story of the match will be goalkeeping. Marquette's Amanda Engel comes in with a shutout streak running over 284 minutes and three straight Big East Goalkeeper of the Week awards, while DePaul's Alejandria Godinez has only allowed one goal in the last four matches. Godinez has the best goals-against average in the league (0.54) and the best save percentage (.907). More importantly for Marquette's chances, she's been tested, too. Godinez has 78 saves on the season, third most in the league.

Sophomore Elise Wyatt - no relation to Bray Wyatt, probably - leads the DePaul attack with six goals and four assists on the season, both team highs. Junior defender Rachel Pitman will anchor things in front of Godinez, and she has a Defensive Player of the Week award to prove it.

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