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Marquette Women’s Lacrosse Preview: vs Cincinnati

The Golden Eagles return home to the Valley in search of their first win of the season.

COLLEGE BASKETBALL: JAN 19 East Carolina at Cincinnati Photo by Ian Johnson/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

I don’t really have much to say as far as big takeaways for Marquette women’s lacrosse in 2020 after their first game of the season. They got smashed by a very good Notre Dame team that has three preseason All-Americans on it. Okay. That seems like a reasonable result, honestly. I’m not going to say it was good, obviously, but it seems wildly inappropriate to really say that it was bad, either.

It was 60 minutes of lacrosse, and quite honestly, the Golden Eagles are probably better as a team if they just ignore it. Attack Friday’s home opener as the first game of the season and try to grow as a team from there.

The most notable thing to come out of the Notre Dame game is the fact that Emma Soccodato started at attack for head coach Meredith Black. Soccodato is the only freshman who found her way into the starting lineup, so it’s clear that at least this point in the season, she’s clearly deserving of the playing time. Given the nature of the final score, I don’t think there’s anything big to be taken away from that other than her mere presence in the starting lineup, but hey: Soccodato did account for one of Marquette’s 11 shots on goal in the game. That’s something. Maybe. Probably. We’ll see?

Game #2: vs Cincinnati Bearcats (0-1)

Date: Friday, February 14, 2020
Time: 1pm Central
Location: Andy Glockner Memorial Bubble, Valley Fields, Milwaukee, WI
Streaming: GoMarquette.com
Live Stats: Sidearm Stats
Twitter Updates: @MarquetteWLax

Marquette is 5-2 against Cincinnati. Last year’s 22-18 road loss to the Bearcats snapped a five game winning streak by the Golden Eagles.

The Bearcats come to Milwaukee with one weather postponement and one loss on the season already. They were supposed to start their season on the road against Kent State, but the inclement conditions forced a postponement to March 8th. Instead, Cincinnati hosted Louisville on Sunday afternoon to start their season, and that ended in a 16-11 loss for UC. The Cardinals, who will host Marquette on Monday, opened up a 4-1 lead early and were able to keep the Bearcats at arm’s length the rest of the way.

It’s kind of a bummer of a start for Cincinnati, as 2019 was the best season in program history according to their own preview for their opening weekend. They finished the year 12-7 with a 4-1 record in AAC play, and come into 2020 picked to finish second in the American behind preseason favorite Florida.

Three Bearcats earned a spot on the preseason all-AAC team: Morgan Dukes, Monica Borzillo, and Kylie Nause. Dukes, a 5’4” junior defender from Maryland, was a unanimous choice for the all-league squad. Borzillo is a 5’5” senior attacker out of Devon, Pennsylvania, while Nause is a 5’11” sophomore midfielder from Maryland. Had you looked at UC’s box score to determine who their three preseason all-AAC players were, I’m not sure you would have figured it out. Nause and Borzillo combined for two goals and an assist. Dukes had just two ground balls in the game, although her three caused turnovers are pretty impressive.

Three Bearcats scored two goals in their opener, so while Borzillo and Nause deserve a spot at the top of the scouting report, the other three can’t be ignored. Taylor Gysin (22G, 8A) and Gianna Napoletano (21G, 2A) were reliable contributors for Cincinnati a year ago, so they should still be familiar to Marquette’s coaching staff. Amanda Fess was not, tallying just one goal and one assist while appearing in 18 games.

Gianna Pope started in net against Louisville, while Kate Brocato took over at halftime. Both women allowed eight goals during their 30 minutes of action. Brocato made three saves on 11 shots on goal, while Pope made just two. I don’t know if head coach Gina Thomas is going to stick with the split duties for this one, or if she’ll hand over the whole show to one goalie or the other.