Marquette shot less than 30% from the floor on Sunday afternoon, which turned into a 70-64 loss at the hands of the St. John’s Red Storm.
The Golden Eagles are now 12-4 on the season, but just 3-2 in Big East action. It’s still very early, of course, but MU sits in fourth place in the league standings, two games back of 4-0 DePaul.
Somewhat similar to the Green Bay game, Marquette struggled to get out of the gate in this contest, falling behind 8-0 in the first two minutes and change. It drifted out to a 10 point margin briefly on a triple from Aaliyah Lewis, before MU woke up and cut it to four points and turned this into a competitive game.
Marquette had their best shooting period of the game in the second quarter, shooting 40% from the floor and 4-of-9 from long range. That’s good! St. John’s led by 13 with 13 seconds left in the first half. That’s bad. Danielle King connected on a four-point-play as the half ended, cutting the lead to only nine at halftime. That’s good! A little bit more lucky than good, but good!
Things kept getting better as the second half got underway, as Marquette started getting to the line and dragged themselves within three on a pair of freebies by Allazia Blockton with 6:26 left in the period. Here we go, right? Wrong. Marquette wouldn’t score again until a Natisha Hiedeman layup with 47 seconds left, and that bucket cut the margin to just nine points. St. John’s didn’t run away with the game on that 8-0 run across nearly six minutes of game time, but burning that much clock to do it definitely put a crimp in MU’s effort.
A Hiedeman jumper broke the ice on the fourth quarter, and made it a 52-47 game..... and then Marquette just kind of fell apart. Jade Walker was great for SJU all game long, scoring 32 points on 15-of-22 shooting and dominating Marquette inside much like Brianna Rollerson did for Creighton. Walker was especially good in the final frame, making all five of her shots, and grabbing three of her game high nine rebounds to put nails in Marquette’s coffin. That helped the Red Storm shoot 78% in the period while MU shot just 32%, including an awful 1-for-8 effort from behind the three-point line as the Golden Eagles got desperate to claw their way back in as they trailed by double digits for most of the quarter.
Andrew Goldstein of the Marquette Wire reports that Marquette had travel difficulties on their trip to New York which probably did not help their case in this game. However, if you want to be in the NCAA tournament and compete for the Big East title, you have to overcome things like that and grab winnable games like this one. Marquette destroyed St. John’s on the glass, grabbing up 38% of their own misses and holding SJU to get just 22% of their own. The chances were there for MU to win this game, they just didn’t figure it out.
Up Next: The Golden Eagles are still out east, making the short trip to South Orange, New Jersey, for Tuesday night’s game against Seton Hall. The Pirates are 8-7 on the season and 1-3 in Big East play after falling to DePaul by a score of 96-65 on Sunday afternoon.