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The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

Marquette secures a top five finish in BIG EAST with win over Providence

Photo by Sarah Kuhn
Junior guard Jordan King (23) goes up for a layup in Marquette women’s basketball’s loss to UConn Feb. 13.

Behind a career-high 24 point performance from sophomore forward Liza Karlen, Marquette women’s basketball ended off is four-game road trip in winning fashion defeating the Providence Friars 57-51 Friday night at Alumni Hall.

“For a lot of the game we weren’t the tougher team, give Providence a lot of credit,” Marquette head coach Megan Duffy said to BIG EAST Digital Network’s Ashley Liotus. “We were one step slow and finally by the last 15 minutes I thought I saw my team making those hustle plays. At this point in the season, anytime you can get a win no matter how pretty or ugly it is we’re extremely happy.”

With the win, Marquette cannot now finish lower than the 5-seed in the next weekend’s BIG EAST Tournament. The Golden Eagles can clinch a first-round bye with a win Sunday against St. John’s.

It was a defensive battle in the first quarter with both sides shooting a combined 10-for-28 (35.7%) from the field.

Karlen had a strong quarter scoring the ball, putting down nine points and grabbing nine rebounds. With those efforts, Marquette was able to take the lead heading into the second quarter up 16-12.

Providence began the second quarter on a 5-0 run to bring Marquette’s lead within one, 18-17. Then the Friars took the lead at 20-18 at the 5:29 mark.

Marquette was able to get some offensive momentum back late in the quarter. As seconds winded down in the half, junior guard Jordan King beat the shot clock buzzer with layup to tie the game at 24-24 after the first 20 minutes.

Despite shooting 10-for-30 from the field in the half, the Golden Eagles forced 13 turnovers defensively.

Marquette started the third quarter on a 10-2 run off of 3-pointers from Karlen and graduate student guard Karissa McLaughlin.

After Providence responded with four points of their own, the two sides went on a nearly three-minute scoring drought before the Friars brought it within two. Marquette edged out a 40-36 lead heading into the final stanza after three quarters.

It was a tightly contested fourth quarter, with both teams trading blows. After Marquette took a 45-40 lead with 6:15 to go, Providence would go on a 9-2 run to take a 49-47 lead with just 3:41 left in the quarter.

The Golden Eagles would respond with one final extended run, going on an 8-0 run, including four from Karlen.

Marquette’s defense held its ground down the stretch as Providence scored just two points in the final 3:27.

In addition to her career-high 24 points, Karlen chipped in seven rebounds and an assist.

“Liza Karlen was huge down the stretch, making big shots and big stops on the defensive end,” Duffy told Liotus.

McLaughlin finished with 12 points, six of which came from beyond the arc.

Senior forward Chole Marotta had an all-around game while just scoring three points. The Mequon, Wisconsin, native, grabbed a game high 13 rebounds and dished out five assists.

Graduate student forward Lauren Van Kleunen was held to just two points on two free throws after only playing 24 minutes due to foul trouble.

Marquette (19-9, 12-7 BIG EAST) will return to the Al McGuire Center Sunday to host St. John’s on Senior Day at 2 p.m. CST.

“We’re so happy to get back to Milwaukee now and have a day to collect ourselves hopefully,” Duffy said to Liotus. “We are going to  celebrate Lauren Van Kleunen, Mari (Antwainette) Walker and Karissa McLaughlin on Senior Day. They’ve done so much for our program, so I look forward to having their families in the building, hopefully finishing out in a very positive way.”

This article was written by Jackson Gross. He can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter @JacksonGrossMU. 

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