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The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

Steiner’s historic game leads Marquette past Butler in 20-12 win

Marquette in its loss to Michigan March 24. (Photo courtesy of Marquette Athletics.)

The Marquette women’s lacrosse team (5-8) had never lost against Butler (2-9) in the two programs’ seven meetings before Wednesday.

When the Golden Eagles faced the Bulldogs at home in their eighth scrap, senior midfielder Leigh Steiner made sure they would keep their undefeated record with a history-book performance: a program single-game-high-tying eight goals.

“It was definitely exciting,” Steiner said. “It’s just cool to see how far program has come in the time that I’ve been here. Obviously last season was historic, but I just think every season we keep pushing our limits and keep pushing what we can do.”

Marquette would take the win over the Bulldogs with a final score of 20-12.

“We started really strong and came out firing,” Marquette head coach Meredith Black said. “We were able to make adjustments and limit runs. They had one three-goal run, but besides that, they didn’t have many which is great because that can get defeating for us in the moment.”

Steiner’s hat trick treats Marquette well

Marquette came out the gate fast scoring their first two goals within 92 seconds of the opening face-off. Though Butler would have a response when they went on a 3-1 scoring run for the next four and a half minutes.

During that time, junior goalie Brynna Nixon couldn’t stop one shot on goal.

The Golden Eagles would complete two 80+ second defensive stops back to back with about six minutes left in the first quarter.

When they gained possession after they stopped Butler a second time, senior midfielder Leigh Steiner became impatient and shot a bouncing heater from about thirty feet outside the net. She would make it 4-3 Marquette and like a magician, Steiner would go on to tally the team’s next two goals for a hat trick.

“My goal when I’m pushing the ball is to move quick and force my teammates to move with me,” Steiner said. “That forced our whole team to really start playing together and play faster. When we play fast and connected no one can stop us.”

Out of the next seven goals stretching into the 2nd half, six would come with a Marquette logo stamped on. This was helped by 10 caused turnovers in the first half by the Golden Eagles, handily beating their season average of 7.3 per game.

They finished with season-highs in both caused turnovers (13) and ground balls (26).

“We talked about pressure all week in the ride and in transition. That was the goal,” Black said. “I think we really stuck with applying pressure, kept it as a high priority in the game and luckily it paid off.”

After the third quarter, Marquette would find themselves up 17-7. Yet, for the first six minutes of the fourth, Butler would go on a 3-0 scoring run: their biggest of the game.

This effort was in vain, though, as the Golden Eagles’ third frame advantage was too much for the Bulldogs to claw back from.

Goalie decisions

In Marquette’s previous game, first-year goalie Mikayla Yang started in net. This was the first start of her career and the first game this season Nixon didn’t start.

“She was making more saves at practice, so we decided to make that switch and reward her for her hard work,” Black said. “I definitely have a lot of trust in her and she did a great job.

“Timing is hard for this late in the season to make that [goalie] switch, so we’ve sort of been back and forth. I think we’re gonna take it day-by-day with the goalie.”

Up next

The Golden Eagles will travel to Denver, Colorado to face the No. 13 Denver Pioneers (7-3) Saturday at 2 p.m. CST.

This article was written by Ben Hanson. He can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter/X @benhansonMU.

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About the Contributor
Benjamin Hanson
Benjamin Hanson, Sports Reporter
Ben Hanson is a sophomore from Minneapolis, Minnesota studying journalism, digital media and advertising. He is a sports reporter and the assistant social media producer for the Marquette Wire for the 2023-2024 school year. When he's not in the newsroom, he likes creative writing, being with friends and going to sporting events. He is excited to be able to spread the word of the Marquette Wire because it has done so much for him while also refining his sports writing.

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