Ninth-seeded Golden Eagles finish season with 13-6-2 overall mark
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Golden Eagles add first BIG EAST tournament trophy to 2013 regular-season title
Marquette men's soccer gathered to learn their draw for 2013 NCAA College Cup on Monday, Nov. 18, 2013.
Highlights and post-match comments from coach Louis Bennett and freshman Louis Bennett II following Marquette's 4-1 win over Drake on Sept. 8, 2013 at Valley Fields.
Head Coach Louis Bennett enters his eighth season as head men's soccer coach at Marquette University in 2013, following four consecutive appearances in the BIG EAST men's soccer postseason tournament and a berth in the NCAA Division I Men's Soccer Championship in 2012.
Under Bennett's direction, Marquette climbed as high as No. 2 (Soccer America) -- the highest ranking in program history -- in the national polls after the squad reeled off 12 consecutive victories to open the 2012 campaign, including a thrilling 3-2 win over then No. 2-ranked Connecticut at Valley Fields on Oct. 6.
MU finished the 2012 season with a 16-4-1 overall mark, tying single-season school records for wins and shutouts (10). Following a disappointing defeat to national runner-up Georgetown in the BIG EAST Conference semifinals, the Golden Eagles were rewarded with the No. 7 overall seed in the NCAA tournament, but fell to Northwestern at home in the Round of 32 following a first-round bye.
Bennett and his staff earned BIG EAST Coaching Staff of the Year accolades after guiding Marquette to its first BIG EAST Conference regular season title in 2011. MU posted a 7-2 mark in league play to finish ahead of perennial national powerhouses Connecticut and Notre Dame in the Blue Division standings.
Following the remarkable 2011 season, captain Calum Mallace garnered BIG EAST Midfielder of the Year honors and freshman C. Nortey was a unanimous selection to the BIG EAST All-Rookie Team. Mallace went on to become the first Marquette player ever drafted into Major League Soccer when he was the second-round pick of expansion team the Montreal Impact in the 2012 MLS SuperDraft.
In 2010, Bennett's squad captured its first postseason win during his tenure at Marquette, rolling to a 3-1 victory at defending BIG EAST champion St. John's in the first round of the BIG EAST Men's Soccer Championship.
A lifelong ambassador of the "beautiful game" and beloved in the Milwaukee soccer community, Bennett has boasted a 162-127-35 career record in nearly two decades as a collegiate head coach.
Since the mid-1990s, Bennett has helped develop 32 players who have gone on to play in the professional ranks. He has also coached six all-America selections and 63 all-conference performers.
Bennett's squads have improved every year since he took over at Marquette in 2006, including the team's first-ever appearance in the BIG EAST Men's Soccer Championship in 2009. It's a testament to the drive that Bennett instills in his young players and the leadership he helps to foster among his team captains, coupled with the sound technical and tactical training MU players receive.
Bennett brought a wealth of previous success to Marquette after 10 illustrious seasons at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Widely regarded as one of the top head coaches in college soccer, Bennett is a five-time winner of the Horizon League's Coach of the Year Award and twice was named NSCAA Great Lakes Region Coach of the Year.
At Milwaukee, Bennett led the Panthers to five straight NCAA Tournament berths, including four consecutive appearances in the second round of the tournament. The most successful coach in the history of UWM men's soccer, Bennett compiled a 136-63-17 record in 10 seasons.
Milwaukee had dominated the Horizon League, posting a 41-4-2 record in conference play with five league titles between 2001 and 2005. Over the same period, Milwaukee was 14-1 in conference tournament matches, reached five conference championship games and won a total of four tournament titles. Bennett also guided his squad to a 25-game league unbeaten streak (23-0-2) that stretched into the 2004 season.
In 2005, Bennett led the Panthers to their fifth straight NCAA tournament appearance, winning the regular-season crown for the fifth consecutive year and the conference tournament for fourth straight time. Bennett had Milwaukee poised to upset top-seeded New Mexico in the second round of the 2005 NCAA Men's Soccer Championship before eventually falling in penalty kicks.