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Just Keep Winning: Marquette 16, Villanova 12

The Golden Eagles move into a three-way tie for first place in the Big East with the W.

Riley Hill
Riley Hill’s passing engineered Marquette’s second half explosion.

A week after tying the program record for assists in a game, Cate Soccodato took Marquette’s offense into her own hands. The junior from New York found the back of the net a career best five times on Saturday, four in the second half alone, as the Golden Eagles picked up a 16-12 road victory against Villanova. With the win, MU is now 6-4 overall, but more importantly, 2-0 in Big East action. That has Marquette in a three-way tie for first place in the league with #6 Florida and Temple.

That Soccodato powered second half was where the game changed. Villanova scored the first two goals of the game and MU never led before halftime. We saw five ties, but the lead never changed. Katie Comerford’s 19th goal of the season continued the trend of the first half and put the Wildcats up two at 9-7 with 26:59 left to play. That is when the run began.

Riley Hill got things started, and by the time we hit the 20 minute mark, Marquette was up 12-9. Two of those five straight goals came from Soccodato, and she scored the next one at 19:46, too. Allison Lane scored her third goal of the game at 17:41 to turn it into a 7-0 run and put MU up 14-9. That would turn out to be enough offense for Marquette, even though they would tack on two more goals. They held Villanova to just three goals in the final 17 minutes, which sounds impressive enough at face value. The Wildcats recorded 11 of their 15 shots in the second half after that goal by Lane as they furiously tried to fight their way back into the contest.

Didn’t happen though. Villanova committed five turnovers in that stretch, and MU goalie Julianna Horning made four of her 10 saves coming down the stretch to help preserve the Marquette lead.

Soccodato was the shooting star, popping in all five of her shots for goals on the day, but it was Hill who was the points juggernaut. She had a game high six assists, four coming on Soccodato goals, and tacked on two goals of her own as well. Grace Gabriel, who now sits just 16 goals away from MU’s single season record with seven game remaining, had one of the quieter hat tricks that you’ll ever see from such a dynamic scorer. Lane finished with a hat trick as well to highlight her superb all-around game, which included this caused turnover/assist two-for-one:

Up Next: Hey, remember when I said that MU was in a tie for first place? Well, that tie is going to get simplified one way or another next Saturday. Marquette will host Temple at Valley Fields, with the Owls (7-3) riding a four game winning streak. They beat #16 Denver and Cincinnati to open up Big East action, although both games were decided by one goal and the game against the Bearcats went to double overtime. This will be just the third time they play away from home this season and the first time they get further than 90 miles away from Philadelphia.