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Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

Women’s soccer earns first point in Big East play in nearly three weeks with draw

Photo by Alex DeBuhr
Sophomore forward Kate Gibson (10) scored one of two goals in Marquette women’s soccer’s 2-2 draw against Providence Oct. 13 at Valley Fields.

The Marquette women’s soccer team is in the midst of an important four-game stretch in October.

If victories, or even points, are in their grasp during this final stretch of the regular season, the Golden Eagles are going to have to find ways of earning either of those in order to break their five-year playoff drought.

Marquette did that Thursday night, pulling out a come from behind 2-2 draw against Providence at Valley Field in a game that easily looked like the Golden Eagles were on the cusps of their fourth straight loss.

“I wanted a win (tonight) and we weren’t ready to come out and win in the first half,” Marquette head coach Frank Pelaez said. “(But) we got to point out of it and I’m excited about that.”

Marquette suffered through an especially frigid first half performance, falling into its sixth straight deficit early on.

While on the breakaway, Providence first-year forward Ella McBride dribbled right around Marquette senior defender Hailey Block right in front of the 18-yard box.

After making the move on Block, McBride fired a shot into the upper left corner of the net to hand the Friars the early 1-0 lead in the ninth minute. It was McBride’s first collegiate career goal.

Things would continue to get worse for the Golden Eagles in the half when Providence scored on an own goal in the 26th minute to move the needle to 2-0.

Pelaez said one reason his team saw itself a 2-0 deficit at halftime was, they weren’t proactive enough in the first 45 minutes.

“We talked about being proactive before the game started. We talked about it all week long and they didn’t come up proactive,” Pelaez said. “Sometimes you just got to light a fire in someone’s **** at halftime in order for them to get going.

“I don’t like to do it, because they’re harder on themselves than anyone else, but sometimes you go to remind them why the hell they play the game. Everybody likes to play very sexy out of the back, we’re not a sexy team. We’re going to hit and we’re going to go at people.”

The Golden Eagles second half was a different tale, as Marquette came out with aggression on the offensive attack.

Sophomore Kate Gibson gave Marquette the spark it desperately needed in the 54th minute. Gibson cleaned up senior midfielder Katrina Wetherell’s deflection off the crossbar by placing it in the back of the net for her fourth goal of the season.

“They were running downhill in the second half and we need to start doing that from the very beginning,” Pelaez said. “Kate didn’t hesitate. She was proactive and hopefully I’m gonna show it on film them and say, ‘this is what we’re gonna keep doing.'”

First-year midfielder Aislinn Boyle headed home the equalizer in the 74th minute as she put a touch on junior forward Elsi Twombly’s cross from the right side of the pitch.

“A lot of people think they see that goal and they’re like, ‘Oh, she got lucky, right place right ime’ but she busted her butt down the field and she got there,” senior midfielder Elizabeth Bueckers said. “She really deserved that one.”

The Golden Eagles had several chances in the final 16 minutes to take the lead but were unable to capitalize on any of them.

With the draw, Marquette earns one point in the Big East standings which keeps the Golden Eagles in the hunt for one of the six spots in the conference tournament.

“I was really proud of our second half,” Bueckers said. “They had us on our heels in the first half and we were able to get on our front foot, control possession and I think we deserved a third goal, but am happy with the tie.”

During halftime, the team honored former players in celebration for the program’s 30th anniversary. Pelaez called having former players back this weekend, “the most satisfying thing” he has had in a while.

“It is about family,” Pelaez said. “And when you have a lot of these players that I coach and their kids, that are about the same age as my kids and there was one that ran out the tunnel just before the game started and you just see her little face, I just think of her mom’s right. It’s a really cool situation to be in. I just want to soak it up and enjoy it as much as I can.”

Marquette (6-6-2, 2-3-1 Big East) will finish its two-game home stand Sunday against the Villanova Wildcats (3-7-3, 2-4 Big East) at 1 p.m. CST at Valley Fields.

Pelaez said in order for his team to give itself a chance to earn three points against the Wildcats, the Golden Eagles will have to replicate their second half performance.

“It’s the second half,” Pelaez said. “Can we can we just keep going from what we just did in the second half. We will remind them tomorrow, the next day and we’ll show film on it. Villanova, they got a new coach and they believe in something. No game is easy in the Big East, you’re going to have to fight and that’s what we’re about.”

This article was written by John Leuzzi. He can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter @JohnLeuzziMU.

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