It was a bad night for basketball at the McGuire Center, and I don’t just mean the ice storm falling on southeastern Wisconsin limiting the crowd to well short of the announced 1,232 people in attendance. Neither Marquette nor Creighton managed to crack 41% shooting across the entire game and only once — Marquette in the final frame — did either team manage to shoot even 50% for a quarter.
At the end of it all, it was Creighton leaving the building — not going home right away because of the ice storm, mind you — with a 55-44 victory over Marquette. The loss snaps a four game winning streak for the Golden Eagles, drops them to 18-9 overall and 11-7 in league action, and locks them out of a top three finish in the Big East this season.
We can skip the first half, which was a slightly ugly but tightly contested affair. A bucket from Rose Nkumu with 69 seconds left in the second quarter made it a one point game, 26-25 favoring Creighton, at the half. Marquette scored first in the third quarter by way of a free throw from Chloe Marotta to make it a 5-0 MU run across halftime.
Marquette didn’t score for more than six minutes.
The streak was broken by what ended up being their only field goal of the quarter.
The only other points they scored in the period were two free throws from Marotta with 98 seconds to go.
18-5 Bluejays in the third. Creighton shot just 46.7% in the period. They didn’t light the world on fire, although they did hit two of their three long range attempts, but we can file that as “Creighton likes shooting threes.” Marquette just stopped functioning as an offense, shooting just 1-for-11 and committing half of their 10 second half turnovers.
It was 44-30 at the end of the third period, thanks to Morgan Maly scoring at the horn.
Marquette came out for the fourth quarter with their hair on fire and immediately cut the margin to eight. That’s good, a little late, but good. They didn’t get closer than that until there was 90 seconds left, on a bucket by Kenzie Hare to make it 50-44 after the Bluejays went up 11 with 3:33 to go, and the Bluejays grabbed two offensive rebounds — they only had six in the entire game — on the ensuing possession to burn off the clock that was already tilting against Marquette.
Chloe Marotta was Marquette’s leading scorer on the night, hitting more free throws than field goals to finish with 13 points, while Liza Karlen had 10 points to stand as the only other Golden Eagle with double digits. Jordan King’s shot never came together on the night as she went 3-for-16 from the field to finish with six points.
A big thing that happened that allowed the Bluejays to snuff out Marquette’s already kind of shaky offense? The Golden Eagles shot just 1-for-10 from long range and they attempted just three long range shot in the second half. When you just straight up tell the other team that you’re not even going to try to spread the floor, they don’t have to worry about defending it. It’s not a new problem for Marquette, it was a known problem coming into the season, and it cost them a game here.
How about some highlights, such as they are, courtesy of GoMarquette.com and FloSports?
Up Next: Marquette has two more regular season games to go, and as a team buzzing around the NCAA tournament cutline, they need two wins. The first one is on Saturday, as they head out on the road to visit Xavier. The Musketeers are not a good basketball team and currently sit at 0-18 in Big East play after taking a 60-43 loss at Butler on Tuesday night. Tipoff in Cincinnati is set for 1pm Central and FloSports will have the broadcast for the final time this season for Marquette.