Hockey loses twice in tough series against Vanderbilt

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Hockey loses twice in tough series against Vanderbilt

Photo by Austin Anderson

Photo by Austin Anderson

Photo by Austin Anderson

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Marquette hockey continued to struggle this past weekend against Vanderbilt, losing both their games against the Commodores.

The losses dropped Marquette to 16-4 overall and the club is on a three-game skid, their first losing streak of the season.

Friday’s game was senior night for Vanderbilt’s eight seniors. They jumped on Marquette early and finished strong with three goals in the third period, ending the game 5-1. After the Golden Eagles’ loss Friday, head coach Will Jurgensen acknowledged his team is in a funk.

“It was a rough game, we had a couple of breakdowns here and there and we didn’t have our A game by any means,” Jurgensen said.

Saturday’s game was more positive for the Golden Eagles. Vanderbilt scored two early goals in the first, but Marquette kept them in check the rest of the game. It was the team’s offense that struggled for the first time all season. Sophomore Conor Coyne added the team’s lone goal, making it 2-1, but the Golden Eagles were unable to tie the game and were held scoreless the remainder of the game. Marquette only scored two goals all weekend, an unusual statistic considering the club’s usual high-octane offense.

“We only scored two goals all weekend,” Jurgensen said. “I can’t even remember when the last time that happened.”

One challenge the team faced against Vanderbilt was the unfamiliarity of the opponent. Neither Jurgensen or any player had ever seen the Commodores play before. Jurgensen said he believes the team struggled because of that factor, but said it should not be an excuse.

“If we go out and play Marquette hockey, our game, it shouldn’t matter who we play,” Jurgensen said.

During these next couple weeks, the team hopes it will bounce back in time for their conference championship that begins Feb. 10. The Golden Eagles are currently ranked second in their region and would receive an automatic bid to nationals. Closing out their season strong is something Marquette must do if it wants to reach their goal.

“We have to put these losses behind us, we need to remember what makes us successful and just keep going,” Jurgensen said.

Marquette’s next shot at redemption will be at home against Michigan. The Wolverines are a D2 team and should provide a tough test for the Golden Eagles. Wins this weekend would be a big boost to the club’s record and their ranking.

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