Women’s basketball uses big second half to take down Holy Cross

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Photo by Keifer Russell

Marquette women’s basketball defeated Holy Cross 75-55 Nov. 11 inside the Al McGuire Center behind 18 points from junior forward Liza Karlen.

A strong second half powered by first-year guard Mackenzie Hare’s four 3-pointers, the Marquette women’s basketball team defeated Holy Cross 75-55 Friday night at home.

“My teammates did a great job of giving me confidence,”Hare said. “Liza (Karlen) had some great down screen. Some flare screens just gave me more opportunities. And our point guards did a great job of distributing the ball.”

Marquette jumped out to an early 12-4 lead behind six points from junior forward Liza Karlen in the first two minutes of the game. Holy Cross worked its way back into the game ending the quarter on a 10-3 run to close the deficit to 15-14 heading into the second quarter.

“Give Holy Cross a ton of credit,” head coach Megan Duffy said. “Thought we were back on our heels a little bit at different moments in the game, but I thought we had great contributions by people off the bench.”

In the second quarter, Marquette worked the lead back up to 19-14 behind a layup and two free-throws from Karlen to open up.

Over the next minute, junior forward Janelle Allen scored four straight points to bring the Crusaders within one at 19-14. Allen finished with 20 points on the night.

Both teams exchanged runs of their own, as it was 24-23 in favor of the Golden Eagles at the 2:58 mark of the quarter. Marquette closed out the half on a 5-2 run to head into the locker room leading 29-25.

Karlen finished the first half with 12 points, four rebounds and two assists.

Marquette started the third quarter with two more Karlen baskets along with a couple of baskets from senior guard Nia Clark to take the score to 42-33 at the under-five media timeout. The Golden Eagles closed the quarter on a 10-6 run to head into the final frame up 52-39.

Senior forwards Chloe Marotta and Kennedi Myles and sophomore forward Makiyah Williams all contributed points on that run.

“When your number’s called go in and bring energy and production,” said Duffy. “There’s so many ways you can produce, we’re starting to get a feel of different lineups we can use.”

The fourth quarter was the Hare show as she hit four 3-pointers across the 10-minute stanza allowing the Golden Eagles to cruise to a 75-55 victory.

“I’ve been playing with Kenzie since June, so I knew she could do it,” said Karlen. “I was just waiting for her to show it in the game. We’re all really proud of her right now. And I think we’re gonna see a lot more of that this year.”

Karlen and Hare tied for a team-high 18 points. Karlen added five rebounds and three assists on the night as well.

Marotta filled the stat sheet with 10 points, eight rebounds, two assists, two blocks and two steals.

After missing all of last season with an injury, senior guard Claire Kaifes scored her first basket in nearly 600 days with 22 seconds left in the game.

As a team, Marquette shot 50% from the field and 37.5% from beyond the arc, meanwhile Holy Cross shot 44.2% and 28.6% respectively.

Marquette (2-0) will return to action Sunday afternoon when it plays host to crosstown rival University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee at 2 p.m. CST. The game will be streamed on Marquette University Television.

This article was written by John Gunville. He can be reached at j[email protected] and on Twitter @GunvilleJohn.