The Marquette Golden Eagles could not pull off the upset and fell 4-0 to the #19 ranked Georgetown Hoyas Thursday afternoon in the Big East women’s soccer semifinals. With the loss, MU is likely going to be left out of the NCAA tournament. They entered this game as the #49 ranked team in RPI and needed to at the very least perform well against the Hoyas to have hopes of an at-large bid. Georgetown simply had too much firepower and MU could not get their offense going against a very strong Hoya back line.
Georgetown’s Caitlin Farrell opened up the scoring for the Hoyas in the 10th minute of the game. Soon after, Rachel Corboz whipped a free kick over the Marquette wall and into the corner of the net in the 14th minute for her first goal of the game. The Golden Eagles were able to hold Georgetown scoreless the rest of the half, but were only able to register two shots in the opening frame. The second half was much like the first: Georgetown got going early, and Marquette could not find an answer. The Hoyas scored in the 50th minute when Kelly Livingstone got on the end of a Corboz corner kick. 14 minutes later Corboz struck again with her free kick expertise and beat Maddy Henry from the right side of the field.
The Hoyas out shot Marquette 21-3 in this game and held an 8-3 corner kick advantage. This tells the entire story. It was strikingly similar to their regular season game against Georgetown where they were out shot 22-3 with a 9-1 corner kick disadvantage and lost 3-0. The only difference in this game is that they gave up free kicks in dangerous areas and were left to watch Corboz score twice from them. It would have been nice if MU could have kept it close, because then we may be having a slightly different conversation. But with Georgetown’s convincing win they essentially solidify their spot in the top 25 regardless of how the Big East Finals turns out, while the Golden Eagles suffer their fifth loss against the Hoyas in their last six games and need a miracle to get an at-large bid.
Here are Markus Roeders’ thoughts after the tough loss:
Markus Roeders reacts to Marquette's loss at Georgetown in the BIG EAST semifinals. pic.twitter.com/FBXuWhrX5y— MARQUETTE Soccer (@MUWomensSoccer) November 2, 2017
It was always a tough ask for MU to beat a nationally ranked Hoya team that will face #20 Butler in the Big East Finals. This doesn’t diminish the great regular season that Marquette had. Carrie Madden had an incredible year finishing 5th in the Big East in points with 19 netting seven goals and tallying 5 assists. She made the All-Big East First Team with her great offensive production despite missing some games due to injury. Darian Powell also had a memorable season moving into 7th place on the Golden Eagles all-time scoring list with 23 goals. She had five goals and four assists this year and was second on the team in points to Madden. Kylie Sprecher emerged as Marquette’s best young talent with three goals and six assists. Her play was rewarded with a spot on the All-Big East Freshmen Team. Lasty, the Golden Eagles likely wouldn’t have made the Big East Tournament without the play of sophomore goalkeeper Maddy Henry. She finished second in the league in shutouts with 10. She made 99 saves this year which ranks third in the Big East. The scary thing is, Henry is only a sophomore and has two more years to get even better. Overall, this season may be a regression from last year’s team, but it doesn’t discount the amazing team effort and great individual performances that the Golden Eagles had this year.
The Golden Eagles finish the regular season 13-7-1 and 5-4 in the Big East. The NCAA selection show is next Monday November 6th. Be sure to tune in (time to be determined on NCAA.com) to that to see if the committee disagrees with me (boy I really hope they do). It’s just difficult to find a reason to give Marquette an at-large bid. Their record doesn’t stand out and their best win was at home against Drake who’s #60 in RPI. But, hey, you never know maybe they’ll look at Marquette’s strength of schedule and their seven game win streak and give them the nod.