If you manage to make your way down to the Al McGuire Center on Tuesday morning to watch Marquette women’s basketball, you may want to bring your earplugs.
We’re getting a mid-day matinee start for the Golden Eagles on Tuesday because Marquette is hosting their annual Milwaukee Public Schools Day for this one, and that means that the arena will be nearly packed with grade schoolers from all across the city, and they are traditionally one raucous group.
Marquette is likely to give them something to cheer about, as the Golden Eagles are ranked #23 in the country in the latest Associated Press top 25. That’s the best ranking that Marquette has had for the MPS game in some time, possibly in the history of the event. Aside from this being the best Marquette team in a while, MU also needs to take care of business here. The Golden Eagles are headed into a challenging section of their non-conference schedule following this game. On Saturday, they’ll be in Green Bay to take on a Phoenix team that’s on the verge of breaking into the top 25. Next Monday night, they’ll be back at home to take on a Wisconsin team, which probably won’t be a picnic, and then three days after that, MU will be in Ann Arbor to play a ranked Michigan team.
That’s a lot of quality basketball stacked into a very little amount of time, and that’s without mentioning that road tilt with Notre Dame looming right before Christmas. Marquette is 2-2 on the year so far and they need to stack wins in their winnable games. This is one of them, and the Golden Eagles need to get the W.
Game #5: vs Loyola-Chicago Ramblers (0-4)
Date: Tuesday, November 28, 2017
Time: 11:30am Central
Television: Spectrum Sports, only available to Spectrum customers
Streaming: MySpectrumSports.com, but only if you’re a Spectrum customer.
Live Stats: GameTracker
Twitter Updates: @MarquetteWBB
Marquette is 10-8 all time against Loyola-Chicago, and that is thanks to a quality run of wins lately. Of course, by “lately,” I actually mean “over the past 23 years” as Marquette has won all seven meetings since 1994. Most of those W’s have been pretty lopsided, but the most recent meeting was just a 15 point decision back in November of 2014.
This year’s incarnation of Loyola isn’t very good, guys.
You can see the 0-4 record. They have broken 50 points just once, in their opener on the road against Fort Wayne. Since then, 18 point loss at home to Western Michigan, 24 point home loss to Youngstown State, and finally, last Tuesday, a 22 point loss on the road against Milwaukee. This is coming off of a 2-28 season last year where they lost their final 16 games. One thing they do have going for them is that second year head coach Kate Achter was an assistant at Xavier for one season before taking the Loyola job, so she’s somewhat familiar with what Marquette does under the guidance of Carolyn Kieger.
Marquette is going to have to guard Kailyn Strawbridge. The 5’7” freshman is leading the Ramblers in scoring at 14.3 points per game, and she chips in with 3.8 rebounds and 2 assists, as well. She’s not much of a shooter, though. Strawbridge leads Loyola in long range attempts at 23, but only 26% of them have gone in so far this season. Fellow Ellie Rice has knocked down half of her long balls this season, but she’s only tried 10 of them.
Depending on what Kieger and her staff are seeing on film from Loyola, the Golden Eagles may be best served by jumping all over the Ramblers early. Loyola has struggled in the opening ten minutes, getting outscored 81-35 in the four first quarters that they’ve played this season.