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The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

Floor slaps: Reinhardt, Wilson, MU Defense earn win over No. 1 Nova

Photo by Wire Stock Photo
Duane Wilson hit two clutch free throws in last year’s upset against Jalen Brunson No. 1 Villanova.

Katin Reinhardt-est

“Oh my gosh I can’t even… I don’t know what to say,” Katin Reinhardt said after Marquette’s incredible win over No. 1 Villanova.

The graduate transfer has been on a tear for Marquette lately, making him the obvious go-to guy for the Golden Eagles down the stretch. He hit a pivotal 3-point shot to tie the game with 1:04 to play, then drove to the hoop and drew a foul that set up the game-winning free throws with 11 seconds left on the clock. He finished with 19 points and four assists in a game Marquette fans will remember forever.

“Katin was terrific,” head coach Steve Wojciechowski said.

“Growing up as a little kid you dream of these moments,” Reinhardt said.



This was Marquette’s first win against Villanova since 2012. They snapped a nine-game losing streak against the Wildcats. When the Golden Eagles went to Philly earlier in the season to take on the reigning national champions, the final score of 93-81 hid how thoroughly Villanova dominated the game. Things were different this time.

“The first time I ever played the number one team was in Philadelphia, among a lot of other guys on our team,” Reinhardt said. “We didn’t play that hard that time, and this time around we wanted to fight. It wasn’t the way we wanted it to go in the first half and part of the second half. We just kept fighting and found a way, just found a way to win and we believed as a team. Man, it feels great. It feels awesome.”


Duane Wilson, Closer

Redshirt junior Duane Wilson is averaging just 16.4 minutes per game this season. He played just 18 minutes tonight, but he made every single one of them count.

“He was great,” Wojciechowski said. “He was incredibly competitive. He’s been rewarded. He’s got a different role, I wouldn’t say it’s lesser. He’s got a different role and he’s embraced it with the maturity of an upperclassmen whose primary focus is winning. It’s nice to see him rewarded for that. We don’t win the game without him.”

Wilson provided defensive tenacity, chipping in a block and a steal. He came up big when Marquette needed him most, grabbing a key defensive rebound with 47 seconds remaining and drawing a foul in the process. He knocked down both free throws to give his team their first lead of the night.

“I just wanted to bring energy,” Wilson said. “My role is to come off the bench and play defense, make the right play, and plays just started opening up.”


Defense saves the day

“I felt like it started off on the defense end,” Wilson said.

Marquette entered the game ranked in the top 10 in the country in adjusted offensive efficiency by KenPom. However, it was their defense, ranked 131st in the country, that earned them the win.

“We won the game primarily because of our defense,” Wojciechowski said. “We had unusual lineups out there because we had foul trouble. Our guys found a way to win and our defense was a huge part of the victory.”

Villanova head coach Jay Wright also cited Marquette’s defense as the reason for their triumph.

“We settled for threes, but usually when that happens you give their defense credit,” Wright said.


Different schemes

Steve Wojciechowski was quick to adjust defensively, throwing a number of different schemes at the Wildcats. The first switch took Marquette from their traditional man-to-man ball pressure to a 1-3-1 zone. Then they quickly pivoted to a 2-3 zone, then back to man-to-man. Wojciechowski found success with the constant switching, finally landing on the 1-3-1 as his solution.

“You’ve got to give their defense credit,” Wright said. “Their 1-3-1 was really effective.”

“We felt coming into this game that Villanova, efficient as they are offensively, that you couldn’t give them just one look,” Wojciechowski said. “We had planned to use some man, some switching man, 2-3 zone, 1-3-1, and the 1-3-1 was really good for us, and I thought our guys really believed in it. And to be fair, we caught Villanova on a poor shooting night. But those are the type of things that happen when you’re going to beat a team like that.”


Hartless first half

National Player of the Year candidate Josh Hart played just four minutes in the first half after picking up two quick fouls. Villanova didn’t look like a team playing without its star player and top defender, as they held Marquette’s high-powered offense to a measly 24 points. Wildcat guards Jalen Brunson and forward Mikal Bridges stepped up and took care of the offense in Hart’s absence, outscoring Marquette on their own with 25 points combined.


Best stat line

Katin Reinhardt: 19 points on 4 for 7 from 3-point range and 5 for 6 from the free throw line, two rebounds, one block, one steal.


Stat of the night

Marquette led for just 22 seconds.


Up next

The Golden Eagles (14-6, 5-3) will look to extend their winning streak to three games when the struggling Providence Friars (13-8, 3-5) pay a visit to the Bradley Center this Saturday.

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