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Marquette Women’s Soccer Preview: vs DePaul Blue Demons

The Golden Eagles got their first league points on Sunday but still need a lot more.

DePaul v Connecticut
don’t mind me just gonna keep using this 14 year old picture for DePaul
Photo by Rick Stewart/Getty ImagesI

GOOD NEWS: Marquette women’s soccer picked up their first Big East win of the season on Saturday!

MEDIUM NEWS: The Golden Eagles still have six league contests ahead of them, including Thursday night against DePaul.

BAD NEWS: Marquette is in a five-way tie for fifth place right now with Providence, Xavier, St. John’s, and Creighton, and only the top six teams qualify for the Big East tournament.

GRODD NEWS: I dunno, I presume he’s still in Gorilla City.

As great as Maddy Henry has been for the Golden Eagles this season, MU is still second to last in terms of team goals-against average this season, which is generally not great. Also not great: Leading the Big East in saves. Compounding the problem is Marquette also sitting second to last in the league in goals scored. Only Seton Hall (5) has fewer than Marquette’s nine tallies on the season.

If Marquette wants to make a run to the Big East tournament over the next six matches — and it’s absolutely possible — they’re going to need to shore up both their offense and their defense. I feel like the defense is rounding into shape, so maybe that’s not as much of a concern as the offense, which is currently led by freshman Alyssa Bombacino’s three goals on the season. Less great: Two of Bombacino’s goals have come in the last two games. Now, maybe the freshman from Naperville, Illinois, is the breath of fresh air that the team needs to liven things up in the attacking third. It’s clear that Marquette does not have an established serious scoring threat on the roster. If Bombacino, or to be honest, literally anyone else, wants to step up and take the mantle, the job is there for them, and MU will be the better for it.

One thing at a time, though. Step #1 was beating St. John’s on Sunday. Step #2 is on Thursday, and that’s getting a positive result of some kind from a home date against the Blue Demons.

Big East Match #4: vs DePaul Blue Demons (6-4-2, 2-1-0 Big East)

Date: Thursday, October 4th, 2018
Time: 7pm Central
Location: Valley Fields
Special Promotion: The 1st 200 students get Marquette socks AND there’s German-themed concessions. Thus: Socctoberfest.
Video Streaming: GoMarquette.com
Live Stats: Sidearm Stats
Twitter Updates: @MarquetteWSOC

Marquette is 15-5-1 all time against DePaul. That’s actually a really impressive record when you consider the quality of teams that the Blue Demons have been throwing out there in the course of this decade. To that end, Marquette did have a three match winless streak in 2014 and 2015 against DePaul that included a scoreless draw in the Big East tournament that ended with the Blue Demons advancing on penalty kicks.

DePaul comes in fresh off of an overtime home win against Creighton on Sunday afternoon, and if we’re being honest, they were lucky to get it. The Jays scored first on a header in the 32nd, and it was a Creighton header that leveled the game in the 54th minute as well. DePaul caught a break when a Bluejays defender attempted to poke a free kick away from the net, but instead sent it towards the net and deflecting off their keeper’s hands. The referees ruled that the ball had crossed the line, and thus a tie game. Like I said: Luck, at least until Madeline Frick scored her third goal of the season in the 95th minute to give the Blue Demons the win.

The win ended what had been a shaky month of September for DePaul, as they finished the month with a record of 2-3-2 and they got shutout three times along the way. Thankfully for them, both wins came in the course of Big East play, and they come into Milwaukee tonight sitting in a tie for third place in the league with Villanova at six points. That has them three points Georgetown and Butler in a tie for first as well as three points ahead of the five-way car crash at three points.

It’s been nearly two weeks since I wrote the “Where Are We Now?” article, and DePaul still hasn’t fixed the fact that their draw against Bowling Green isn’t on their stat sheet. With that in mind, Franny Cerny has the team lead with six goals so far this season, and when you tack on her two assists, that also gives her the team lead in points. Morgan Turner has five goals and two assists as well, which is a pretty solid one-two punch. However, five of those 11 goals came in DePaul’s 7-0 win against UMass-Lowell, so maybe the Blue Demons are having more trouble scoring than you think.

Mollie Eriksson will be the netminder for Erin Chastain’s squad if everything continues along the same path as the rest of the season to this point. Her goals against average of 0.93 is perfectly fine, as it has her in the top four in the Big East. Eriksson stops 76% of shots on goal, which is only seventh best in the Big East. If the Golden Eagles can get off clean shots, they should be able to find a way to put one past her.