Women’s basketball bounces back in final road game of season

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Photo by Katie Craig

Senior guard Jordan King in Marquette’s loss Feb. 22 to Creighton at the Al McGuire Center.

The number of wheaties eaten by junior forward Liza Karlen between the first and second quarter is unknown.

But whatever the number was, the Minnesota native picked up the pace for the Marquette women’s basketball team and went on a personal nine-point scoring run in the second quarter for the Golden Eagles.

The run solidified a 58-46 win for Marquette (19-9, 12-7 Big East) over the Xavier Musketeers (7-21, 0-19 Big East) Saturday afternoon at the Cintas Center.

Blackford Injury

With 49 seconds remaining in the opening half, Xavier senior forward Nila Blackford hit the court hard and was slow to get up.

After a minute of being on the ground, she got up and walked to the locker room under her own steam. She finished with four points as she did not return in the second half.

Statistical Leaders

After a shaky performance Wednesday against Creighton, Karlen swept off the cobwebs with a bounce back performance as she finished with 15 points, eight rebounds, three steals and two blocks.

Senior guard Jordan King earned a game-high 19 points, six rebounds, four assists and three steals. It is number 23’s 23rd double-digit scoring performance of the season.

For Xavier, junior guard Mackayla Scarlett ended the game with eight points, two rebounds and six assists.

A Game-sealing second quarter

The Golden Eagles ended a gritty and slow first quarter only up by four points.

But after Marquette head coach Megan Duffy spoke to her team, it flipped the switch.

Karlen opened the second quarter with a jumper from just in front of the charity stripe, but she wasn’t done there. The next possession, the Saint Paul, Minnesota native got the and-one on a jumper and extended Marquette’s lead to 17-8.

She would go on to score another set of back-to-back buckets to solidify a nine-point scoring run for Marquette and force Xavier to call a timeout.

Then, the other Golden Eagles got to work.

First-year guard Emily La Chapell, King and senior forward Chloe Marotta all scored and in the blink of an eye, the Musketeers were down 27-14.

Marquette outscored Xavier 17-10 in the frame and went into halftime leading 29-18.

In the frame, the Golden Eagles shot 8-for-13 (61.5%) from the field and the Musketeers shot 5-for-16 (31.3%).

Poor from far

Neither team scored a 3-pointer until the 7:42 mark of the fourth quarter.

Yes, that is correct.

Marquette went 0-for-8 before hitting one and Xavier went 0-for-7 on the day.

La Chapell ended the scoring drought from deep after hitting a three from the corner.

Because neither team shot well from deep, the scoring was secluded to mainly within the paint.

The Golden Eagles scored 28 of their 58 points in the paint while the Musketeers scored 30 points in the paint.

Next Up

Marquette travels back to Milwaukee as it hosts DePaul (15-15, 8-10 Big East) Monday night in the Big East regular season finale. Tip-off is set for 8 p.m. CST.

This article was written by Jack Albright. He can be reached [email protected] or on Twitter @JackAlbrightMU.