Marquette is now 12-3 in Big East action, while fourth place Seton Hall sits at 9-6 and fifth place Villanova is 8-6. With just three matches remaining for the Golden Eagles, one more win will prevent them from being caught by those teams and lock up a spot in the four-team Big East tournament. That’s kind of a big deal for the league, as MU is hosting the tournament on Thanksgiving weekend.
The first set opened up with the two teams staying even at 6 each. MU’s sixth point kicked off a 6-1 run, though, putting the Golden Eagles up 11-7, and the lead bulged as high as six in the middle section of the frame. Providence never mounted a real challenge before Lauren Speckman threw down one of her four kills in the match to end the opener.
Things went heavily in MU’s favor early in the second set, as a 9-0 run turned a 3-3 game into a destruct-a-thon. PC woke up and snatched the next four points, but MU returned the favor with the next three. That had it at 15-7 in favor of the Golden Eagles, and Providence would score just three more times before Lindsey Schaible handed MU the winner on an error.
Competition grew fierce in the third, with seven ties and four lead changes before a kill by Barber put MU up for good at 18-17. What was a hard fought set turned into what would appear to be a relatively easy win for Marquette as MU scored the final four points — two on blocks, two on kills — and secured the win.
Jenna Rosenthal had one solo block and one assisted block in the match to bring her career mark for total blocks up to 396. With three regular season matches remaining and MU on the verge of clinching at least one Big East tournament match, it’s probably unlikely that Rosenthal catches Rabbecka Gonyo for third place all time in total blocks at 431. However, she’s also not that far away, especially for a junior.
Barber’s 14 kills moved her to 457 on the season, moving her past Ciara Jones (452) for 11th place all time for a single season. There’s five totals between Barber and 500 kills, so she’ll start passing people left and right over the next three weekends.
Up Next: The Marquette Revenge Tour spools up next weekend, as the Golden Eagles will host Villanova (15-10, 8-6 Big East) for Manon Geoffroy’s Senior Night on Saturday. The Wildcats beat the Golden Eagles in their barn back on October 14 in a five set thriller one week after MU had defeated Creighton. Before a crack at getting their win back, MU will host Georgetown (7-19, 1-13) on Friday evening.