Marquette and Wisconsin meet Friday in NCAA First Round
Nov. 9, 2016
MILWAUKEE - The Marquette University women's soccer team heads to Madison for a matchup with Wisconsin in the first round of the NCAA Championship at 7 p.m. on Friday at the McClimon Soccer Complex.
The Golden Eagles (12-7-2) earned an at-large berth to the NCAAs after claiming the BIG EAST Conference regular season championship and a runner-up finish in the conference tournament. Redshirt sophomore forward Carrie Madden leads Marquette with six goals and 17 points, while BIG EAST Defensive Player of the Year Morgan Proffitt and Molly Pfeiffer have each recorded 13 points.
The last time the Golden Eagles and the Badgers met was in exhibition action on Aug. 11 when Marquette fell 2-0. UW's Dani Rhodes scored in the third minute, followed by Rose Lavelle in the 29th to give the Badgers a 2-0 lead and the final margin.
Marquette, which has received bids in 1999-02, 2005-06, 2008-13, and 2016, is competing in the NCAA tournament for the 13th time in program history. The Golden Eagles hold a NCAA tournament record of 9-9-4 and are 7-4-1 in first round games. The team has advanced to the second round six times and has reached the NCAA Sweet 16 in 2005, 2010, and 2012.
Wisconsin has reached the NCAA tournament, where it is 14-17-2, for the 19th time in program history. In their last outing, the Badgers fell to Michigan in the first round of the Big Ten tournament on penalty kicks. Wisconsin is led offensively by senior midfielders Rose Lavelle (five goals, four assists) and Micaela Powers (four goals, six assists) who each have 14 points this season.
Marquette is 5-6-2 all-time against the Badgers and is 1-1-1 against them in the NCAA tournament. All three NCAA Championship contests have come at Valley Fields, where MU has advanced to the Sweet 16 in 2014 on penalty kicks and topped UW, 1-0, in 2005 in the first round. Marquette dropped the first NCAA meeting, 3-2, to Wisconsin in 2002.
Should the Golden Eagles advance, they would face the winner of No. 1-seeded Florida and FGCU in the second round next weekend.
KEY MARQUETTE STORYLINES:
• The Marquette coaching staff was honored as the BIG EAST Coaching Staff of the Year, marking the fifth such honor from the BIG EAST for Markus Roeders and MU. Roeders also earned the honor twice in Conference USA.
• Four MU players were honored with BIG EAST postseason honors, including BIG EAST Defensive Player of the Year Morgan Proffitt. Proffitt earned a spot on the all-league first team, while Liz Bartels was on the second team and Maddy Henry and Emily Hess earned all-freshman team honors.
• Proffitt was named to the All-BIG EAST Championship Team along with Henry and Carrie Madden.
• Marquette's 12 victories surpass last season's win total of eight and give MU double-digit triumphs for the 20th time in program history. It is MU's highest win total since it went 18-4-0 in 2013.
• The Golden Eagles earned a share of their sixth BIG EAST regular season championship and their 10th conference title overall (including Conference USA).
• Marquette has reached the quarterfinals of the BIG EAST Tournament all 12 years it has been a conference member and earned a spot in the semifinals for the ninth time in 12 years. It also made its fourth title match appearance.
• Freshman Maddy Henry has started every game in net for MU and recorded the first three shutouts of her career in consecutive wins over St. John's, Xavier and Providence. She added a fourth on Oct. 20 at Villanova and is a two-time BIG EAST Freshman of the Week.
• Carrie Madden, in her third year at Marquette, leads MU with six goals and five assists for 17 points.
• MU's Markus Roeders captured his 300th career head coaching victory on Oct. 23 against Butler. He is fourth all-time at Marquette in terms of overall victories behind former women's coaches Tat Shiely (basketball/volleyball) and Terri Mitchell (basketball) as well as current coach Jody Bronson (tennis).
• MU, which has played three overtime matches in a row on six occasions in program history, won three consecutive OT matches for the first time ever from Oct. 23-Nov. 4.
• Marquette's non-conference schedule included six RPI top-50 teams. MU sits 25th in RPI as of Nov. 7.
• Golden Eagles are making their 13th appearance in the NCAA Championship and their first since 2013.
SCOUTING THE BADGERS:
• Wisconsin was eliminated in the first round of the Big Ten tournament after falling to Michigan in penalty kicks, 4-2, on Oct. 30. Sophomore Emily Borgmann netted the equalizer for UW to tie the match 1-1, but after an even score in regulation and two overtime periods, the Wolverines would go on to clinch the victory after scoring four consecutive penalty kicks. UW sits at No. 35 in the RPI rankings and are led offensively by senior Rose Lavelle, who leads the team in shots with 69, points at 14 and goals with five on the year. Before the tournament, Wisconsin had not lost since Sept. 25 against Indiana and had alternated between wins and ties, most notably notching a 1-0 shutout win against then-No. 8 Minnesota on Oct. 1.
BARRINGTON HIGH'S PFEIFFER AND MADDEN BREAKING THROUGH
• Through her first two years at Marquette, forward Carrie Madden played in a total of one match and did not record a point. That lack of playing experience hasn't hindered her ability to contribute offensively in 2016 as Madden has proven to be Marquette's most potent finisher, especially as of late. The redshirt sophomore leads MU with six goals and 17 points on the year and has four match winners, including a pair of OT daggers in two of the last three matches. Madden scored against Butler on Oct. 23 in the 93rd minute to keep Marquette in the hunt for the BIG EAST regular season title and scored on a phenomenal finish behind her against St. John's in OT of the league tournament semifinals. She was named to the All-BIG EAST Championship Team for her play against the Red Storm.
• Madden's Barrington High teammate Molly Pfeiffer is playing a key role up top for Marquette. Pfeiffer scored the match-tying goal in the 89th minute against Milwaukee on Sept. 9 and the match winner against Michigan on Aug. 28. She now has a career-best four goals in 2016 after tallying three in each of the last two campaigns.
MU CAPTURES SIXTH BIG EAST REGULAR SEASON TITLE WITH WIN OVER DEPAUL
• Eli Beard scored her first goal of 2016 just 57 seconds into overtime against DePaul on Oct. 28 to lift Marquette to the No. 1 seed in the BIG EAST tournament and a share of their sixth regular season title with a 3-2 win over the Blue Demons. Senior midfielder Morgan Proffitt scored a pair of goals to help MU rebound from 1-0 and 2-1 deficits for the win. The regular season title is MU's 10th all-time, counting MU's decade-long stay in Conference USA.
PROFFITT RECOGNIZED AMONG NATION'S ELITE
• Senior Morgan Proffitt has continued to rake in accolades following an All-BIG EAST First Team campaign as a junior, placing her among the top players in NCAA Division I. The Columbus, Indiana native began the summer with an invitation to U.S. Women's National Team Under-23 training camp in Charlottesville, Virginia and ended up making the 20-person squad for a tournament featuring Nordic countries in England during June. After a gold medal performance with the U.S. U-23 WNT, Proffitt was named to the watch list for the MAC Hermann Trophy, a candidate for the Senior CLASS Award and selected as the BIG EAST Conference Preseason Defensive Player of the Year. Proffitt, the third MU player to ever be named to the MAC Hermann Watch List, has started 82-of-84 matches in her career and has recorded 10 goals, including four game winners.
• She was named a 2016 All-BIG EAST First Team selection and the BIG EAST Defensive Player of the Year while leading Marquette to the league's regular season crown. Proffitt has recorded a five goals as a senior and tied a career best with two in the regular season finale against DePaul. She was also named to the All-BIG EAST Championship Team for her play in the league tournament.
GOLDEN EAGLES AMONG MOST SUCCESSFUL CURRENT BIG EAST TEAMS SINCE 2005
• Since entering the BIG EAST Conference in 2005, Marquette has proven to be among the conference's elite women's soccer programs. The Golden Eagles have accumulated an overall record of 171-64-31 since that time and a mark of 92-22-10 in league action, which includes six regular season conference titles and a pair of tournament championships in 2012 and 2013. MU, which has missed the NCAA tournament just three times since its addition to the league, went a remarkable 39-1-1 in BIG EAST play in the four seasons from 2010-13.
NCAA RPI RANKINGS RECOGNIZE MU'S STRENGTH OF SCHEDULE
• The NCAA's eighth RPI rankings of 2016 were released on Nov. 7 and showed the Golden Eagles second among all BIG EAST members with an RPI of 25. Georgetown paces its league counterparts in seventh place nationally, while Providence (No. 62), DePaul (No. 54), and St. John's (No. 73) also join MU in the top 100. Despite a .500 record (4-4-2) through non-conference action, Marquette's RPI ranking is boosted by pre-conference matchups with No. 1 Stanford, No. 20 Nebraska, No. 23 Kansas, No. 26 Northwestern, No. 37 Santa Clara and No. 49 Michigan.
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