MU Ties Illinois, Shuts Out Northwestern
April 2, 2012
MILWAUKEE - The Marquette University women's soccer team finished another road weekend of spring action with two games in Illinois on Saturday. The Golden Eagles played to a 2-2 draw at Illinois and earned a 2-0 shutout at Northwestern.
Scoring goals for the Golden Eagles were Mary Luba, Maegan Kelly, Jacie Jermier and Cara Jacobson. Sofie Schunk recorded her first clean sheet of the spring against Northwestern, and played all 180 minutes in net totaling eight saves in the two contests.
"Overall, a huge improvement over our first weekend and at times some superb soccer played by our squad," said head coach Markus Roeders. "If we can sustain some of those exceptional spells that we had in each game, we will be a very, very tough team to beat in the fall. It was fun and we definitely enjoyed ourselves on the day."
The Golden Eagles began the day with a 2-2 draw over 90 minutes at Illinois. The reigning Big Ten Champion went ahead 1-0 after a goal in the 29th minute. Marquette responded and scored two goals within six minutes during the second half.
Bollinger scored the equalizer for the Golden Eagles in the 68th minute when she buried the rebound after Illinois' goalkeeper couldn't control Mary Luba's initial shot. Kelly put MU up 2-1 in the 74th minute. She ran on to a ball played behind the Illini backline by Ally Miller, went one-on-one with the keeper and finished her shot to the far post.
"We surely elevated our game throughout the 90 minutes. It was impressive how much we improved from the weekend prior. Although it took us a while to get a great flow to the match, the second half was absolutely outstanding. Going down 0-1 before halftime, we had some miscommunication on a throw-in and a subsequent corner that Illinois played short which lead to the goal. In the second 45 minutes, we played some great possession soccer, scored some goals, showed creativity in our attacked and easily could have scored four or five goals. Mary Luba did a nice job setting up the tying goal that Elizabeth finished on the rebound and we know how deadly Maegan is with her finishing, she wasn't going to be denied," said Roeders.
Illinois tied the game, 2-2, four minutes later when Shayla Mutz got her head on a service and nocked it in past Schunk.
"The goal that Illinois got back was a tad unfortunate since we turned the ball over inside our own eighteen yard box," said Roeders. "But it was a good reminder that we have to learn to finish out games when we are ahead. Probably the only thing we could hang our heads on for this game is that we didn't finish our chances better."
Marquette kept on the attack and finished the game with a 20-8 shots advantage. Following the game versus the Illini, Marquette traveled to Evanston for another 90-minute contest against the Wildcats.
Jermier and Jacobson accounted for the Golden Eagles' goals and both strikes came in the second half. Marquette exuded a solid defensive presence, and continued to create opportunities to outshoot Northwestern, 15-4.
"Again, we learned from the challenge we had faced last weekend playing back to back except this time we had more rest between matches. As much as we had to focus on playing, the mental part of physically rising up to play a rested team and still playing our game is taxing. We weren't as fluid to start the game but throughout the match we contained their attack. Defensively, our focus was very good and the team wanted to earn the first shutout for the spring season," said Roeders.
Jermier struck first in the 59th minute when she finished a cross from Mady Vicker and headed it in to the near post. Jacobson netted the second goal in the 80th minute. She ran onto a cross from Rachel Brown and finished with a hard shot under NU's goalie.
"We had some good chances throughout the match and surely could have scored more. At halftime, we told ourselves to win the second half and earn the shutout. Jacie did a nice job finishing her goal considering she had a similar header about five minutes prior to her goal that ended up going over the bar. Cara's goal was the finishing touch on an excellent day for our team. Sofie got her first shutout and that will help her moving forward," Roeders said.
The Golden Eagles will continue their spring slate on Saturday, April 21 when they host Iowa at Valley Fields at 11 a.m. Marquette will play UW-Milwaukee later that day at 1:15 p.m. at Engelmann Field.