Grace Gabriel tallied four goals and an assist to roll past Claire Costanza on the Marquette women’s lacrosse all-time points chart as the Golden Eagles picked up the 16-12 victory over Niagara on Sunday afternoon. With the win, Marquette moves to 6-4 on the year, and they have now won three straight games.
I came into this one expecting to see a bunch of goals, and the first six minutes did not disappoint. We were averaging just about a goal a minute when the clock read 24:00 left in the first half as MU got out to a 2-0 lead to start and Niagara answered with three straight, including two 25 seconds apart from Caroline Crump.
Aside: When Crump scored goals in this game, the Niagara PA system played Roses by OutKast. Here’s the lyrics for that song, and here’s the video. Watch and follow along if you’re not familiar with it.
You tell me if that’s a good plan to play that for a woman named Caroline scoring a goal in a lacrosse game.
Things slowed down for a bit from there, but Marquette would eventually seize control. Over the final 20 minutes of the half, the Golden Eagles ripped through a 7-2 run, which only got to two for Niagara because of a goal with five seconds left before halftime. Add on the first 10 minutes of the second half, and that run blows out to 10-2 favoring the Golden Eagles. That left them up 13-6 with 19:15 to go after Caroline Steller’s 10th goal of the season.
Gabriel came in needing two points to tie and three points to break Claire Costanza’s all-time record of 169 points in her Marquette career. She nabbed all three points during Marquette’s 10-2 run. First was an assist on a Cate Soccodato goal with 17:09 left in the first, goal #2 of the string. The last two points came on MU’s first two goals of the second half. Gabriel tied the record on a feed from Madison Kane while a woman up at the 24:56 mark and then again at 20:22 remaining unassisted. That left things at 12-6 Marquette, and Gabriel’s fourth goal of the game to just keep on chugging past Costanza was pretty important, too. That one snapped a 2-0 burst for the home team and put MU back up by six with 8:34 to go. With that said, it was kind of a big deal that Marquette had already held Niagara for nearly six minutes without adding a third goal to the streak, so Gabriel’s marker was more a punctuation mark to the finale of the game than an actual stemming of the tide.
Lindsey Willcocks tacked on two more goals in the final seven minutes to provide some insurance for Marquette, as well as some entertainment for the viewer. See, Sunday was Willcocks’ birthday, and those final two goals were her fourth and fifth of the game. As it was her birthday and she was running wild against Niagara, the Marquette bench broke out into song after each of her goals: “GO LINDSEY, IT’S YOUR BIRTHDAY, GO LINDSEY, IT’S YOUR BIRTHDAY!” This was collectively loud enough to be picked up by the ambient noise microphone on the streaming camera on the other side of the field, and that was fantastic.
As you’ve probably gathered, Willcocks and Gabriel were the goals and points leaders on the day, tying with five points each. Soccodato’s passing earns her a gold star for the day, as she tossed out three assists to go with a goal for a four point day. Jules Horning made seven saves in 45 minutes before giving way to Sophia Leva while up 13-7.
Up Next: It’s time for one more road game for the Golden Eagles to close out this seven game road trip. Marquette will be in Mount Pleasant, Michigan on Thursday afternoon for an afternoon start against Central Michigan. The Chippewas are 2-5 on the year after (I swear this is real) a 24-18 loss on the road against Duquesne on Friday afternoon.