Marquette Loses First League Game to Villanova, 63-61

Katherine Plouffe had 14 points in her return to action.

Dec. 31, 2013

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MILWAUKEE - The Marquette University women's basketball team dropped its first BIG EAST Conference game on Tuesday afternoon to Villanova, 63-61, at the Al McGuire Center.

Senior forward Katherine Plouffe led the way for the Golden Eagles (10-3, 1-1 BIG EAST) in a losing effort with 14 points, while Katie Young (11 points), Apiew Ojulu (10) and Brooklyn Pumroy (10) each reached double digits.

Sophomore guard Caroline Coyer scored 17 of her game-high 20 points in the second half as the Wildcats responded from a seven-point deficit for their first BIG EAST win of 2013-14. Villanova (10-2, 1-1 BIG EAST) also received 14 points from Lauren Burford, who tallied VU's final two baskets of the first half and the first two of the second on 3-pointers.

Villanova fought back with a 9-0 run for its first lead at 43-41 since 11-9 with 8:53 left in regulation. The Golden Eagles would regain a five-point edge before Coyer notched the Wildcats' next 13 points for a 60-56 lead.

Plouffe nailed a 3-pointer from the left wing to cut VU's lead to 60-59 with just under 15 seconds remaining, but the Wildcats held on for the win.

The Golden Eagles shot just 25.7 percent in the second half, while Villanova erased its early deficit by shooting at a 50 percent clip over the final 20 minutes of play (14-of-28).

Pumroy and Ojulu paced Marquette to a 30-24 halftime lead with seven points apiece. The Golden Eagles shot 35.7 percent in the opening stanza but connected on eight of 10 attempts from the charity stripe. Villanova was helped by five 3-pointers in the first half on 16 shots from deep.

Trailing 8-4 with just under 15 minutes remaining in the first half, the Golden Eagles used a 14-3 run, including seven points from Pumroy, to take 18-11 lead.

Marquette's leading scorer, Plouffe, returned to the starting lineup after missing the previous three games due to family matters.

The Golden Eagles return to action on Saturday, Jan. 4 at Georgetown.




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