First up, the newest weekly rankings. Marquette ascends to the #7 spot on the Soccer America top 25, #14 in the NSCAA coaches' poll, and they're #18 in Top Drawer Soccer's top 25. More importantly than all of those rankings, they're currently sitting at #4 in the NCAA's calculation of the RPI. There's not a KenPom.com for college soccer, so the NCAA takes the RPI *very* seriously when it comes time to seed the 64 team .
Past that, the Big East thinks the 2013 regular season champion is super keen, too. Maegan Kelly was named the Offensive Player of the Week for her two goals in MU's title clinching game on Sunday against Providence. It's the second time this season that Kelly's earned that honor. She's currently tied for the third most goals and fourth most assists in the Big East, and only Butler's Sophia Maccagnone shares that distinction with her.
Ashley Handwork was named the Big East's Rookie of the Week, which is the first conference honor of her career. Handwork scored Marquette's second goal against Providence and assisted on Kelly's second goal of the match. Emily Jacobson was named to the Weekly Honor Roll after being the only Golden Eagle to go the full 90 minutes against Providence. Jacobson was crucial to Marquette only allowing five shots all game and had two big time clearances late in the match to preserve the shutout.
SURPRISE! Autumn Bailey was named Rookie of the Week again. It's her fifth award of the season, more than the rest of the Big East put together. Bailey averaged 4.78 kills and 4.11 digs for Marquette's 3-0 weekend. All three matches were sweeps, and Bailey posted double-doubles in all three of them. Bailey can't do it by herself, of course. Elizabeth Koberstein was named to the Weekly Honor Roll for her performance handing out assists to her fellow Golden Eagles, her second such honor this season. Koberstein averaged 12.56 assists per set over the weekend, which somehow is actually higher than her season average of 11.70, which is 9th best in the country. Yes, I said the entire country.
With the win on Friday over the just barely not ranked Creighton Bluejays, Marquette started getting attention from AVCA voters. Marquette picked up eight points in the most recent coaches' poll, which has them unofficially ranked 36th in the country. While that doesn't necessarily sound positive for Marquette's chances of qualifying for the 64 team NCAA tournament, there is positive news. 1) Marquette's only halfway through their conference schedule and their most recent loss to any of the teams remaining was in 2009, and 2) Marquette is 14th in the latest NCAA RPI calculation.
Ok, this one's a slight bit of a drag. As a result of their scoreless 0-1-1 week, Marquette didn't pick up any weekly awards from the conference. They also dropped out of the Soccer America Top 25. But they do rank #18 in the NSCAA coaches' poll, and they're #15 in the Top Drawer Soccer Top 25.
I could go on and on about Marquette's struggling offense here. But relative to the rest of the league, they're doing okay across the breadth of the season: Marquette has two players in the top 11 in the league in goals and two completely different players in the top 6 in assists. That's some incredible diversity in where goals are coming from, so it's just a matter of figuring out how to put the pieces together. After all, Marquette's woes are not as dire as the currently 2+ match scoreless streak hints at. Charlie Lyon is the clear choice as the second best goalie in the league this season, so it's going to take quite the effort to beat him and, possibly more importantly, the NCAA's RPI has Marquette as the 9th best team in the country.