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Marquette Women’s Lacrosse Splits A Weekend At Villanova

Friday’s game was not as close as the score indicates, while Sunday’s contest was tight down to the wire.

Madison Kane
Madison Kane had two goals, two assists, and five ground balls to help Marquette beat Villanova this past Sunday.
Facebook.com/MarquetteWLax

Well, the good news from this past weekend is that Marquette women’s lacrosse has a Big East win. The medium news, I guess, is that it took until Game #4 of the league schedule for the Golden Eagles to acquire said win.

On Friday afternoon, Marquette squared off with Villanova on the road out in eastern Pennsylvania, and it did not go MU’s way as they lost 19-15 in a game that wasn’t as close as the score indicates. Sunday afternoon was a different story as neither team had an easy time finding the net, but Hannah Greving found it last with just 4:54 left to go to give the Golden Eagles an 8-7 victory. With that win, Marquette is now 4-6 on the year and 1-3 in Big East play with six games left to go.

As I said, Friday’s game wasn’t as close as the final score looks. The first 21 minutes or so were, as MU’s Leigh Steiner scored with 9:09 left in the first half to make it a 6-5 ballgame favoring the home team. Marquette did not score again for the rest of the half, though. Five straight goals for the Wildcats made it 11-5 at the break, and Katie Comerford made it two in a row for her when she broke the ice on the second half to put Villanova up 12-5.

Bad.

Marquette and Villanova started trading pairs of goals, ultimately leading to Madison Kane scoring with an extra woman advantage for the Golden Eagles... but that only made it a 16-11 game with 10:38 to play. The Wildcats scored three of the next four goals to take their biggest lead of the contest at 19-12 with only six minutes and change to go. MU tacked on three more down the stretch, two with an EWO, but they never had a chance to really rally here.

How about some highlights, courtesy of GoMarquette.com and Villanova.com?


34 goals scored in 60 minutes on Friday.... not so much on Sunday as the two sides only combined for 15 goals. It appears that Marquette made the biggest adjustment, as they gave up just 18 shots to the Wildcats on Sunday after letting VU fire off 39 attempts on Friday. That’s a huge difference, especially when you consider that MU’s shots only went from 35 to 30. This wasn’t a game that was played at an entirely different pace as MU’s shots prove. The Golden Eagles just made things incredibly tough on the Wildcats. Part of the reason for the low number of shots from VU is Marquette’s transition defense. The Golden Eagles forced the Wildcats into seven failed clears (19-26) across the length of the game, four in the first half and three in the second.

After being tied 3-3 at the half, the game tilted in the first 10 minutes of the second half. Villanova scored first, getting a goal from — oh look — Katie Comerford to put them up 4-3. The next three goals, though, came from Marquette sticks. Caroline Steller’s 27th goal of the year tied the game back up, and goals from Lindsey Hill and Hannah Greving made it a 6-4 game with 20:31 to go.

But, as you could expect from an 8-7 ballgame, Marquette’s offense struggled from there. MU would score just one time in the next 14 minutes as the Wildcats slowly but surely pulled themselves even at seven. That game-tying goal came from, of course, Comerford with 7:13 to play.

Lots of time left, of course, but neither team had gotten into the net much, so it very much seemed like the next goal would likely win the game. That next goal came from Greving with 4:54 to go, coming straight down the middle.

From there, though, Marquette had to hold on.

The Golden Eagles won the ensuing draw control, but didn’t even burn 50 seconds off the clock before Caroline Steller had a shot blocked which led to Villanova scooping the ground ball and going the other way. Whether it was MU’s defense stifling the Wildcats or the Wildcats just trying to eliminate time remaining, Villanova chewed nearly 75 seconds off the clock before Libby McKenna had a shot saved by MU’s Sophia Leva.

2:40 to go, and Marquette successfully cleared the ball and just started using the shot clock to their advantage. Head coach Meredith Black called a timeout late in the clock to draw up one good look at the net, but VU’s Hanna Driscoll forced Leigh Steiner into a turnover, and things went the other direction with Villanova looking to tie.

NOT SO FAST, MY FRIEND!

Steiner forced a turnover from Kelsey Mentzer to make up for her own miscue seconds earlier, thus triggering one final failed clear of the game for the Wildcats and giving Marquette the ball with 64 seconds to play. No more shot clock, no rough stuff from Villanova, and boom, MU wins.

Greving’s game-winner was her second of the game, tying her with Madison Kane for team high honors on the day. Kane ended up topping the points column for MU thanks to two assists on the day, which was tied with Lindsey Hill for the team lead there. Kane was huge all around as she grabbed up five ground balls in the game to tie with Megan Menzuber there, and she had a caused turnover, too.

How about some highlights, courtesy of GoMarquette.com and Villanova.com?

Up Next: More road games are in Marquette’s future, but not after some time off. After taking this coming weekend off, the Golden Eagles will be out in Washington, D.C., for a pair of contests against Georgetown on Friday, April 9th and Sunday, April 11th. The Friday game will start at 3pm Central time, while Sunday’s game against the Hoyas will start at noon Central. The Hoyas are 3-5 on the season and 2-2 in the Big East after taking two losses on the road against #25 Denver this past weekend. Georgetown will host Syracuse on Tuesday, April 6th, before Marquette comes to town.