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Marquette Women’s Soccer Drops Tough Big East Opener Against Butler

Hotly contested match with 37 fouls between the two teams

Emily Hess
Emily Hess had some nice crosses late that just didn’t turn into goals for Marquette.

Marquette Women’s Soccer fought hard against Butler on Sunday afternoon, but ultimately could not overcome the one goal deficit from the first half. The 1-0 loss puts them at 2-7-1 on the season and 0-1 to start Big East play.

Honestly, not a terrible result for the Golden Eagles considering the circumstances. The Bulldogs are a stacked team that made the NCAA tournament a year ago. They will likely end up battling Georgetown for the Big East title at the end of the season. They’ve beaten good teams like #20 Notre Dame, tangled with #19 Kansas before falling 1-0, and most recently got throttled by TCU 6-1. The last one is significant because Butler was hungry for a big bounce back game after suffering the blowout loss.

Marquette, on the other hand, had been coming off the miraculous 1-0 victory against UWM. A lot of times you see a let down game after such an incredible feat. However, it wasn’t so at the Valley on Sunday afternoon. Judging how this season has gone thus far, a 1-0 defeat to a Bulldogs team that cruised by Marquette 3-0 last year isn’t all that bad.

Butler broke through in the 34th minute scoring the lone goal of the game from the boot of freshmen forward Anja Savich. She has had an immediate impact and is leading the Bulldogs in scoring with five goals this season. After the goal Marquette put the pressure on and outshot Butler 8-4 in the second half. Junior goalkeeper Maddy Henry made two back to back stops in the 56th minute to keep the came within reach.

MU was able to keep the ball for long periods of time but only tested goalkeeper Leone Doege twice in the second half. This was likely a direct result of Butler disrupting the flow of the game by fouling the Golden Eagles frequently. They racked up 24 fouls and were only punished twice with yellow cards in the 50th and 59th minute. It would have been nice to see more yellows handed out for consistent infringement but that’s just me.

Despite the loss, there are some positives Marquette can take away from this game. Most importantly that they controlled the game for long periods of time and nearly equaled Butler’s shot total for the match. Here’s assistant coach Nick Vorberg after the game:

This game could have gone either way and the Golden Eagles did a great job of maintaining their composure while Butler was clearly trying to knock them off their game. One thing is for certain: The Golden Eagles have been playing a much better brand of soccer the last two games. Let’s see if they can continue that when they travel to Villanova on Thursday.