Marquette Drops Home Opener to No. 5 Northwestern
Feb. 21, 2015
"Disappointed with the loss," head coach Meredith Black said. "I thought we played a really nice first half and really strong defensively. We allowed them to make a run to start the second half and that hurt us. It took the wind out of our sails and we weren't able to come back from that."
Selena Lasota had a hat trick before 10 minutes had gone by on the way to finishing the day with six goals for the Wildcats, which brought her season total to 17 through just four games. Marquette was led by Riley Hill, who scored her first two goals of the season - both coming in the second half.
Coming off a loss to No. 8 Duke on Thursday, the Golden Eagles looked to catch the Wildcats while they were down, but Northwestern cracked the scoreboard first. Kaleigh Craig found the net just 1:33 into the game to give the visitors a 1-0 advantage.
However, Nicole Gleason, who tallied two goals in Marquette's loss at Colorado a week prior, answered for the Golden Eagles with a game-tying score at the 25:39 mark.
From there, the Wildcats would score four straight times, thanks to three goals from Lasota, to take a 5-1 lead with 22:10 remaining in the first half.
A lot of credit goes to the Marquette defense as it held Northwestern scoreless for the remainder of the first half. Emily Donovan made it 5-2 before halftime in what resulted in a well-played, free-flowing first half.
NU's Blake McHugh and Christina Esposito combined for two goals in the first 1:03 of the second half to make it 7-2. Two more Lasota goals and the Wildcats had built an insurmountable, 10-2, advantage with more than 23 minutes to go.
Taylor Smith broke the Wildcat scoring binge with a tally at the 22:08 mark. That followed two more Northwestern goals before Riley Hill reached the scoring column for the first time on the day with 11:03 remaining. Claire Costanza registered her fourth of the season 4 minutes later and Hill tacked on her second of the day with just 17 seconds remaining in the game.
Despite the loss, Marquette showed improvement from last year's 20-5 setback to Northwestern early in the year. Yet the Wildcats proved why they are one of the top programs in the nation, holding the advantage in shots, 26-12, ground balls, 23-15, and draw controls, 12-9.
The Golden Eagles will begin a four-game road trip when it heads to Pittsburgh to take on Duquesne next Saturday, Feb. 28. First draw is set for 10:30 a.m. Central time.
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