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Marquette Women’s Soccer Beats St. John’s, 2-0

That is an unexpected result, on a number of levels.

Marquette women's soccer
Caroline Fink’s 1st goal of the year gave MU a 2-0 lead vs St. John’s.

On a damp, cloudy Sunday in Milwaukee, Marquette women’s soccer provided a bit of sunshine courtesy of a 2-0 win over St. John’s. The win moves Marquette to 6-5-2 on the season and 2-1-0 in the Big East.

It was a surprising result for the Golden Eagles considering the opponent in front of them. St. John’s had only allowed two goals in a match once before in the 2016 season, and to balance that out, the Red Storm and keeper Diana Poulin had posted eight shutouts in their 11 matches. Since their other two goal allowance was their only other loss on the season, it’s pretty clear that Marquette was able to figure out the key to defeating SJU.

The other thing that indicated a struggle for Marquette in this match was how well St. John’s was possessing the ball this season. Coming into the match, the Johnnies were outshooting their opponents on an average of more than eight shots per game. With Marquette struggling to stay level in shots with their opponents in 2016, facing an opponent with that kind of differential seemed like it was going to be a problem. And yet, St. John’s only finished with a 12-10 shot advantage, in part because six of those shots came after the Golden Eagles were already up 2-0. When Caroline Fink turned and fired for the insurance goal, that evened the match at six shots a piece, and you can’t fault Marquette for going into a little bit of a defensive shell and allowing more shots than they took in the final 42 minutes. Getting one goal against Poulin and the Red Storm was a bit of an accomplishment, getting a second was damn near a miracle this season, and you have to start covering up to preserve that lead.

Morgan Proffitt got the scoring started in the 22nd minute with a perfectly placed shot from outside the box that Poulin had no chance of getting a mitt on as it sailed into the far upper 90.

Caroline Fink provided the double-up just 108 seconds into the second half, cashing in for her first goal of the season with some trash cleanup in front of the SJU net.

As great as the efforts on both of those goals are, the Play of the Day is almost assuredly Maddy Henry’s diving save, using all 5’8” of her body and her arms to get juuuuuuust enough of her glove on a Triple H-esque knee lift of a shot by SJU’s Samie Scaffidii.

That stop came in the 29th minute as one of three saves in the first half for Henry. She finished with six saves on the afternoon, preserving the shutout for her first clean sheet of her collegiate career.

Up Next: Big East play continues on Thursday when the Golden Eagles make the trip down to Kentucky. I’m sure you’re thinking “Hey, since when has there been a Kentucky team in the Big East,” and you’re 100% right. MU will be playing Xavier (6-6-1, 0-3-0 Big East) on the campus of Northern Kentucky University, as the Xavier soccer facility has been swamped by recent heavy rain in the area. I’m going to pretend that Xavier’s refusing to play the match at Cincinnati’s facility because imagining the dislike between XU & UC is funny.