11 different Golden Eagles found the back of the net as #13 Marquette won their seventh straight game to open the season, defeating Mercer 14-6 on Sunday afternoon. The seven wins are the most in the NCAA right now and also set a program record for wins in a season, as well as wins to open a season.
Mercer got things started less than 4 minutes into the game with a goal from Matt Quinn, and then, in order: Kyran Clarke, Pat Townsend, Ryan McNamara twice in a row, Jordan Greenfield, Blaine Fleming, Jacob Richard, Greenfield again, Clarke again, Henry Nelson, and Conor Gately scored for Marquette.
Now it was 11-1, and there was 10:48 left in the third quarter. Mercer wouldn't score again until Chris Rahill broke through against backup netminder Cole Blazer with 3:39 left in the third. That gave Marquette a streak of 37:56 without allowing a goal, and thus the game was over. Okay, yes, from Rahill's goal forward, the Bears would outscore Marquette 5-1 over the next 14-ish minutes. It was still 14-6 at that point. Oh well.
The final score was boosted by two goals when two Marquette sophomores scored their first career goals in the final two minutes. First it was Washington native Grant Priesler, and then, with time expiring, Ryan Sarazin tacked as well. Congrats to those guys for making the best use of their time on the field!
Greenfield and McNamara finished with three points each, with both men scoring two goals and an assist. Chris Rahill matched their output for the Bears to lead Mercer in scoring. Jimmy Danaher played just over 25 minutes and made four saves to pick up the win. Blazer made his second appearance of the season in net, while Matt Barone ended up relieving Blazer for the final 15 minutes. Marquette's backup netminders combined for 10 saves, while Mercer's Mike "Don't call me Ted" Nugent made nine in the losing effort.
Conor Gately Watch: Gately's third quarter goal gave him 86 career points, leaving him three shy of tying Tyler Melnyk's program record of 89.
Up Next: Time for a long layoff. Marquette won't play again until Saturday, March 21, when they'll open Big East play against Georgetown in Washington, D.C. The Hoyas are currently 3-2, but they'll play Vermont, Duke, and Loyola (MD) between now and then.