The Marquette women’s basketball team lost 63-55 to Green Bay at the Kress Center Saturday afternoon and is now 3-3 this season. It’s not the start coach Carolyn Kieger and her Golden Eagles wanted I’m sure. Marquette was looking to build off of the record setting 62 point victory against Loyola Chicago Tuesday but Green Bay was not cooperative and had a great overall performance to take down the Golden Eagles.
There wasn’t much that went right for the Golden Eagles in this one. They got down 10-2 early and were never able to get back in the game. It doesn’t help when you enter halftime trailing by 16 points. They shot an abysmal 26% from the field and went 1-10 from 3-point range in the first half. That will kill ya. They actually put forth an impressive second half effort outscoring the Phoenix 36-28 and shooting 42% from the field. It wasn’t enough to make up for the terrible first half offensive performance however.
This is the first game that the Golden Eagles are held under 80 points. Not only that, but it’s also the first time Marquette fails to have at least four double-digit scorers in a game. Amani Wilborn (18), Danielle King (16) and Natisha Hiedeman (10) were the only players to post double figures in scoring. The Phoenix did a hell of a job on Allazia Blockton holding the preseason Big East Player of the Year to just six points on 3-of-10 shooting. She had been third in the Big East averaging just over 19 points per game entering the contest. That was a major blow for an MU squad that has heavily counted on Blockton to lead the way. Lauren Van Kleunen was another player that was stymied making just 1 of her seven shot attempts and missing all three of her shots from behind the arc.
Overall MU only connected on three of their 17 three point attempts. That’s just 18% and also just awful, especially when you’re down by a ton of points and trying to mount a comeback. Was it poor shooting or good guarding by Green Bay? Probably a little bit of both. The Phoenix also out-rebounded the Golden Eagles 43-30 and took advantage of MU’s terrible offense by shooting 46% from the field. They had four players in double-digits including Jessica Lindstrom who led the way with 15 points. All Green Bay had to do was coast to the finish in the second half after having a 16 point lead at halftime.
It was encouraging to see the Golden Eagles comeback effort because they did make the game competitive across the final quarter. A Lindstrom layup on the first possession of the fourth made the score 52-36 favoring the Phoenix, but the lead dipped to single digits on a King layup with four minutes left. A layup by Van Kleunen cut the lead to six with 68 seconds remaining, but Laken James returned the favor 16 seconds later and that was as close as MU could bring it. Other than that, Marquette will have to regroup quickly as they turn around and face another in-state rival in the Badgers.
Up Next: Marquette will come home to host the Badgers at the Al McGuire on Monday night. Wisconsin is 5-3 this season but are on a three game winning streak, with two of those victories coming away from the Kohl Center.