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Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

BECKER: BIG EAST women’s soccer off to slow start

Photo by Maggie Bean
Marquette will host DePaul on October 28th at Valley Fields to close out conference play.

When the 2016 women’s soccer season kicked off, there were three BIG EAST teams favored to make the NCAA tournament. Now, as we enter week four of the season, only one BIG EAST team can feel confident about their non-conference results.

Georgetown was selected as the unanimous favorite to win the BIG EAST and they’ve backed it up with results. The Hoyas are 4—1 this season with an overtime win over No. 12/7 Rutgers. Their only loss was at the hands of No. 2/1 Stanford.

DePaul and Marquette were picked to finish second and third in the conference, respectively. Both teams started the season with mixed results, but the Blue Demons have seriously missed the mark.

DePaul was expected to challenge for a BIG EAST title and a fourth consecutive national tournament appearance, but the Blue Demons earned their first and only win of the season Sunday against a winless Army side.

You can excuse DePaul’s loss to undefeated and No. 24 Northwestern and their draw to Hofstra, who is receiving votes in the poll, but a loss to William & Mary and a draw against Fordham are huge missed opportunities to earn wins on a short non-conference slate.

Marquette owns a less than stellar 2-3-1 record, but their schedule has been brutal. After opening the season with a pair of road losses to Kansas and Nebraska, the Golden Eagles bounced back with a pair of wins on the road at Illinois State and at home against Michigan.

While those four games were plenty difficult to open the season with, things got even trickier. Marquette went to California last week for back-to-back games against nationally ranked opponents in No. 22/20 Santa Clara and No. 2/1 Stanford.

The Golden Eagles did manage to earn a draw at Santa Clara, but despite solid play throughout the non-conference slate, they still have a losing record.

Marquette and DePaul each have an opportunity to improve their resume with away games at No. 24 Northwestern and LBSU, who received votes in the NCAA poll this past week.

Outside the top three, only St. John’s has managed to surprise. The Red Storm are 4-0-2 and have given up just two goals this season. They have their first litmus test when they take on Washington Friday night.

There’s still time for the BIG EAST to turn things around before conference play starts later this month, but the margin for error is slim.

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