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Marquette Women's Basketball Falls Short In Rally Against Xavier

I'm not nearly smart enough to be a coach, but I've got a really solid solution here.

Erika Davenport ripped off 16 points in the second half against Xavier.
Erika Davenport ripped off 16 points in the second half against Xavier.

Despite outscoring Xavier 50-39 over the final 22 minutes on Friday night, Marquette women's basketball took their fifth loss in league play this season as they fell to the Musketeers, 71-66.

As you can kind of guess from that 50-39 number, Marquette trailed Xavier 32-16 after a Briana Glover layup with 2:22 left in the second quarter.  The 16 point margin was Xavier's biggest lead of the game and capped off a 14-3 run to open the period for the Musketeers.  That's pretty much your ball game right there when you take a long view of things, and it seems to be a general problem for Marquette this season.  They keep finding their way into gigantic holes and then, because there's a ton of talent on this squad, they furiously rally out of it.  In fact, Allazia Blockton actually tied the game for Marquette at 51 with just over eight minutes to play and then MU tied it again at 53 on their very next possession on a layup from Erika Davenport.  Even though they were down huge early, Marquette just kept coming at the Musketeers, but it ended up being too much for them to maintain the path to their second straight Big East win.

Following the Davenport bucket, Xavier scored on three of their next four possessions while holding MU scoreless for two and a half minutes.  That gave XU a six point lead and that margin was all they really needed to hang on for a win and a share of the Big East lead.  Marquette did have a fraction of a chance after Aliyah Zantt missed a pair of free throws with 23 seconds left and Natisha Hiedeman turned around and drained a triple on the other end.  That made it a three point game with 12 seconds left, and Davenport fouled Raeshaun Gaffney to send Xavier to the line so MU could get it back for that final chance.  Gaffney drained her throws under pressure, though, and that was that.

Allazia Blockton continues her amazing freshman campaign, recording her seventh double-double of the season with 22 points and 11 rebounds.  She also chipped in two steals to the Marquette effort.  You can easily make the argument that this might have been Blockton's least efficient outing of the season, as she went just 10-24 from the floor to get those 22 points.  Erika Davenport contributed a double-double of her own, scoring 16 points, all in the second half, as well as grabbing a career best 12 rebounds.  Nine of Davenport's caroms came on the offensive glass.

Briana Glover's 20 points led the way for Xavier, who also got near misses on double-doubles from Aliyah Zantt and Raeshaun Gaffney.

Up Next: It's just a quick drive up I-74 to Indianapolis for Sunday's contest.  Marquette will square off with Butler on Sunday at 1pm Central, and that one will be on the Big East Digital Network on Fox Sports Go.  The Bulldogs are 7-10 on the year and 2-4 in Big East play after losing 61-54 to DePaul on Friday night.