Women’s lacrosse falls in season finale

Courtesy of Marquette Athletics
Courtesy of Marquette Athletics

In the final game of its inaugural season, the women’s lacrosse team was unable to overcome coach Meredith’s Black’s alma mater, No. 10 Notre Dame, falling to the Fighting Irish 14-5 Saturday.

The Golden Eagles concluded the season with a 2-15 record and finished on a 13-game losing streak after starting the season 2-2.

Marquette took the lead right off the bat, as freshman midfielder Hayley Baas ran the crease to beat the Notre Dame keeper 48 seconds into the game. It was one of the rare times that Marquette struck first and one of the fastest goals the team has scored all season.

Despite Marquette’s early lead, the Fighting Irish would tally multiple quick goals, starting a 6-0 run for the home team. Baas finally answered when she found the top left corner, but again Notre Dame would answer with two goals, including a buzzer-beater with less than a second left in the half.

The Golden Eagles trailed 8-2 at the intermission.

Possession was again an issue for the Golden Eagles, and it stemmed from their inability to clear the ball. The defense did well in causing turnovers but failed in the clearing game and consistently turned the ball over in the process.

“We struggled with our transition, but I think playing such a well-known team that is very successful is good for us because it’s going to help us,” captain and freshman attacker Emily Donovan said. “Everything we’re doing now is going to make us better for next year.”

The tempo did not slow down in the second half, as the Irish continued to control possession. Clearing was a huge problem for Marquette, as it gave up three goals to start the half. There was a little bit of momentum for the Golden Eagles toward the middle of the half as freshman midfielder Kenzie Brown scored back-to-back goals to make it 11-4, but it quickly faded.

An upside to Saturday’s game was the increase in draw controls. In their past four games, the Golden Eagles have averaged 7.75 draws per game. They won the draw battle 11-9 on Saturday.

Baas would tally the final goal of the game, giving her three on the day, but the season would end in defeat for the Golden Eagles.

The hat trick is Baas’ fourth of the season, and she finishes as Marquette’s second-leading goal scorer with 21 goals on the season behind Brown’s 24. The two were Marquette’s only goal scorers against the Fighting Irish.

Despite issues with possession and turnovers, Black said the team finished the season strong.

“We definitely didn’t control the possession well,” Black said. “We had a lot of turnovers, which hurt us on the scoreboard, but we did fight the whole 60 minutes, really hustled, and I thought we played well.”

Black said she is proud how her team has performed this season despite its struggles.

“I couldn’t have asked for 33 better players to start this program at Marquette,” Black said. “They work so hard day in and day out. They hustle, they want it, they’re enthusiastic, and I’m just so proud to be their coach and so proud of the effort they’ve given. I think we’re going to move up toward the top very quickly.”