At some point between when this Instagram video was shot in Milwaukee and the start of Friday evening’s volleyball match against Butler in Indianapolis, something happened to the appendix of Yadhira Anchante, Marquette volleyball’s setter. Best wishes to her on her recovery of course, but you have to figure that this left the Golden Eagles a little bit flustered as to how they were going to approach their two road contests against Butler and Xavier. Anchante contributes a lot to the squad, not just setting, and moving Ella Foti from her mostly hitter/sometimes-ish setter spot on the floor to full time setter is going to cause reverberations elsewhere in the rotation. As head coach Ryan Theis explained after Saturday’s match, the news that Anchante would not make the trip landed on them right as they were getting ready to leave for the weekend, so they had just one practice to get a handle on what they could do without her.
But it’s not like you could tell that this was a problem for the Golden Eagles.
Match 1, Friday night, against Butler: 3-0 sweep on scores of 25-15, 25-9, and 25-17, and Marquette outhit the Bulldogs .447 to .063.
Match 2, Saturday night, 24 hours later, against Xavier, who stood just one game behind Marquette in the Big East standings when the weekend started: 3-0 sweep on scores of 25-23, 25-22, 25-16
Ella Foti, across both matches combined: 9.17 assists per set, eight kills on 13 error free attacks for a hitting percentage of .615, 2.33 digs per set
I dare you to tell me that any of that is any different than it would have been with Anchante in the lineup, swapping Anchante’s name in for Foti in that stat line, of course. Marquette should have ripped through a Butler team that is now 10-11 on the year and 4-6 in the Big East. Marquette should have handled Xavier, even with the Musketeers coming in at 13-7 overall and 6-3 in Big East action.
Marquette is now 13-8 on the year and 9-1 in Big East play as they made the turn from the front half of the 18 match conference schedule to the back half over the weekend. FUN FACT: MU is now alone in first place at 9-1. This is not only because they beat Xavier, but also because Xavier lost to DePaul on Friday which means that they were already two losses behind MU when the match started. It is also because St. John’s decided get edged out, 3-1, against Villanova in front of 91 people at Nevin Fieldhouse.
That means that Marquette is one game in front of, yep, you guessed it, 8-2 Creighton along with 8-2 St. John’s.
But we’ll have to wait a minute before trying to resolve that.
Up Next: The Golden Eagles will be back at home next weekend for their only two home matches in a 10 match stretch. They will host Providence on Friday at 7pm Central, and then Connecticut on Saturday at 6pm. Both of those teams are 2-8 in Big East play after this past weekend’s activities.