Seven and counting

Seniors are given the difficult task of being team leaders, both on the field and off it.

This past weekend, seniors Ashley Bares and Julia Victor each scored game-winning goals against Connecticut and Providence, respectively.

Talk about leading by example.

Bares scored the only goal in Marquette’s (10-3-2 overall, 7-0-0 Big East) 1-0 victory at Connecticut Friday night for the program’s first ever road victory at Connecticut.

Bares’ goal came in the 71st minute on a pass from sophomore midfielder Lisa Philbin.

“’Philly’ (Philbin) laid out a perfect pass and I went upper-90,” Bares said. “The goal ended up being the winner.”

It was Bares’ first game-winning goal of the season and 10th of her career, moving her into third on Marquette’s all-time game-winning goals list.

Junior goalkeeper Natalie Kulla recorded her fifth shutout of the season and 27th of her career, which puts her just three shutouts shy of breaking the program’s all-time record.

“It’s always a team effort,” Kulla said. “The Connecticut game had two balls off the crossbar, and Victor knocked a ball right off the goal line, so I didn’t really do a whole lot, but it’s still awesome.”

Victor’s game-winner came in a match where Marquette was caught a bit off guard in the first half by a talented Providence team.

The Golden Eagles found themselves trailing 1-0 as late as the 70th minute, when freshman forward Maegan Kelly scored her team-leading fifth goal of the season on a cross from senior defender Lauren Thut.

Both teams had chances to score game-winning goals in regulation and the first overtime period but were unable to do so.

That’s when Victor scored what might be the biggest goal of her career.

“The Friday game took a lot out of us, and we hadn’t beaten Providence in two years,” Victor said. “The goal was huge, but we’ve noticed as the season has gone on that teams are treating(us) as their biggest game.”

Marquette’s 10 wins marks the 15th consecutive season the Golden Eagles have won double-digit games.

“I think it says a lot about the program, we’ve even switched conferences over that stretch,” Victor said. “We realize that we’ve won 10 games so soon, and we want to be able to do that earlier and earlier every year.”

The team also owns a 10-game road win streak in Big East play dating back to the 2009 season.

Marquette finally returns to Valley Fields this weekend with home matches against Cincinnati Friday and Louisville on Sunday.