For just the second time ever, the Marquette Golden Eagles fell to the Villanova Wildcats in women’s soccer on Thursday afternoon. It’s simply too difficult to win after giving up three straight goals. The 3-2 loss drops them to 2-8-1 this season, and yes, with one more loss this will be head coach Markus Roeders’ worst season ever with Marquette. Depressing.
Sometimes it’s just not your year. The Golden Eagles haven’t performed how we expected. Expectations were high after just missing out on making it to the NCAA tournament a year ago (no facts to back this up but if they would have kept it close against Georgetown in the Big East semifinals they would have had an outside shot at an at-large). The story of their season this year has been inconsistent play coupled with bad luck. It’s not much of a surprise that they have found themselves at the losing end of the majority of their games this year.
There was no bad luck in this one, however, as they were outplayed in the first half getting outshot 8-2 in the first half. That’s no way to start off the game, especially on the road against a team you’ve dominated in the past. The Golden Eagles were fortunate to only be down one heading into the break.
Marquette woke up from their afternoon nap in the second half and outshot the Wildcats 12-7 but it wasn’t enough. Before they were able to score, they conceded two goals at the feet of Bri Austin in the 59th minute and Ciara Terabasso with her second of the match in the 73rd minute.
Marquette quickly answered in the 75th when freshmen Alyssa Bombacino fired the ball into the bottom corner of the net to score her second goal of the year. This cracked open the door at the possibility of a comeback. By the time they tallied their second goal it was too little too late, however, when freshmen Katrina Wetherell found herself unmarked on an Emily Hess cross to head it home. The reason why she was probably unmarked? There was just 25 seconds left and Villanova had better things to do than to put themselves in position to give up a penalty kick.
The question now becomes can Marquette sneak into the Big East Tournament. They sit in dead last in the conference with eight of the other nine teams holding at least three points after two matches and need to do a quick 180 if they want to keep their conference tournament hopes alive. They finished in fourth last season and beat Xavier 3-0 in the Big East tourney before Georgetown knocked them out 4-0 in the semis. For reference, DePaul came in as the sixth seed with 13 points last year. There’s no guarantee it will be the same this year but he Golden Eagles can set that as their target score and go from there. They have seven games to get to that 13 point threshold. Buena suerte.